Old 05-26-2008, 05:01 PM   #1
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Default C&O Clifton Forge Shops

Over the weekend of May 16-18, The C&O Historical Society held a "See & Know" seminar in Clifton Forge, Virginia. This seminar was a detailed history of the C&O Railroad and included a tour of the abandoned shops at Clifton Forge. Although these shops have been closed for only about 15 years, they are really showing their age, especially since most of these buildings date back to 1889.

A view of the shops, from the rear, can be seen here . . . .

Image © Rob Kitchen
PhotoID: 236914
Photograph © Rob Kitchen

That turntable once spun gigantic C&O H8 2-6-6-6 locomotives. Inside, you can feel the ghosts of 120 years of hard working railroaders who built, rebuilt, and repaired steam locomotives ranging from the diminutive 4-4-0 to the gigantic 2-6-6-6, and modern diesels ranging from F-Units to U-Boats.

Image © Rob Kitchen
PhotoID: 236915
Photograph © Rob Kitchen


Even in 2008, reminders of those steam days can still be found . . . .

Image © Rob Kitchen
PhotoID: 236929
Photograph © Rob Kitchen

A portion of the old steam locomotive shops was converted to service those newfangled diesels in the 1950s . . . .

Image © Rob Kitchen
PhotoID: 236916
Photograph © Rob Kitchen

In some places, it appears that these old facilities are patiently waiting for the morning shift to file in and begin work . . . .


Image © Rob Kitchen
PhotoID: 236917
Photograph © Rob Kitchen

At the other end of town, the C&O Historical Society recently opened their Heritage Center in the old Smith Creek freight station. Outside, they have a pair of C&O cabooses . . . .



As you can see, they are running on a shoestring, and donít have a switch engine at the Heritage Center, so, like any hard working, mostly volunteer, historical society, they make do. Please visit their web site, and, if you're in Clifton Forge, drop by the Heritage Center . . . .


Although this is not a C&O item, it comes from the same family that now makes up CSX. A quick stop at the Hagerstown Roundhouse Museum on my way home found these beautiful pieces . . . .

Rob Kitchen
Harrisburg, PA

You know you are old when the first car you owned is now considered a "Classic".

Last edited by TonytheTiger; 05-26-2008 at 05:21 PM.
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Old 05-27-2008, 02:49 AM   #2
Mark Rosnick
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Nice series Rob. Interesting to see the history of the old shops.
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