Locales In The Railroad Man

Like I said in my previous post, I’m going to give you a picture tour of some of the locales on the Midland Railroad in my novel.  ALL of the locales in my story either exist or did exist at one time, except for Greenfield Yard, which is entirely fictional, but based on the Black Tom area of Jersey City.  There’s a story about that place as well that kind of has a linkage to my novel.  More on that later.

As we know, Ferry Yard is located on the edge of the Meadowlands in Ridgefield, New Jersey.  It is with some small exception, a near clone of NYSW’s Little Ferry Yard, also actually located in Ridgefield.  Ferry Yard is reached by crossing a drawbridge over the Overpeck Creek.  This point sees a lot of action in the novel, and it actually exists as the entrance to Little Ferry Yard.  Here’s a photo of the real Drawbridge, taken from the Bergen Turnpike crossing:


It does kind of look like a gateway, doesn’t it?  Here’s a picture taken from the creek:


Once across the bridge, the next area of interest was about a half mile down the track.  It’s the roundhouse at Ferry Yard, and the yard office called The Cottage.  These also did exist on the Susie-Q and again, with small exception, are the basis for the locales in the novel.  Here’s a photo of The Cottage.  It’s not the best, but it’s all I have right now:

The Cottage

Here’s a view of its backside taken from the turntable area behind the roundhouse:


It’s the little gray building to the lower left of the photo.  Next is the turntable and the roundhouse itself:

Little Ferry Roundhouse

The shed to the right is Track 11, the “New” Stall, built in the 1940’s.  Here’s a few more photos of the roundhouse area:


Here’s a very bad overview of the entire facility taken from the Turnpike.  If you click on it, it will blow up nicely for you:


The next area of interest is the fuel facility, with the sand tower dominating the scene:NYSW1804LittleFerryNJ10-1974

That shed in the foreground plays a minute but memorable role in Chapter 6.

The sad thing is that the roundhouse, fuel facilities and The Cottage have all been destroyed, torn down in 1992 to make way for an expanded intermodal yard.  Only the turntable remains.  The sand tower was also salvaged and moved to a new engine servicing facility located just to the north of the famed Route 46 bridge, which is eluded to several times in the story.  Sorry, no picture of that bridge here, but you can see it on Google maps satellite feed.

The next big scene is at the old Edgewater tunnel.  Here’s the west “portal”:


Does kind of look like the Gateway to Hell, doesn’t it?  Here’s more pictures of the tunnel interior.  I must say, even I was impressed when I found these:


This last one gives real credence to an important scene in my novel.

Out of space.  Part 2 to follow.


Like This Post? Share It

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *