This book is a station-by-station tour of the West Shore with historical photographs and extensive captions, some maps and diagrams. Black and White photographs are the majority of the selection here since this is an historical title. A color section with some NYC steam and diesel power is found in the back pages but most photos are of CSX equipment.
This is the only book ever published about the entirety of the New York Central's West Shore Railroad, a 450 mile line that ran along the western banks of the Hudson River and west along the Erie Canal to Buffalo on Lake Erie. The book covers over 100 stations and the West Shore's branch line to Earlville with hundreds of steam locomotive action shots and dozens of color diesel era images.
Readers will discover that the West Shore was NOT a branch line. It was a well engineered, double track, signaled main line railroad! NYC used the route to move freight unimpeded from Buffalo to the Albany area, and then down the Hudson's 'West Shore' to Jersey's ports and the New York region's manufacturers. While the four track main line hosted premier passenger trains, this route labored unpretentiously in the shadows. Now, John Ham shines deserved light upon a route dripping with history, and still a vital CSX link.
Dedication, Preface, Contents, pp. 3-8;
New York, West Shore & Buffalo, pp. 9-18;
The Vanderbilt Interests, pp. 19-20;
The West Shore Railroad, pp. 21-34;
West Shore Commuter Trains, pp. 35-106;
Catskill Mountain Branch, pp. 107-110;
Wallkill Valley Branch, pp. 111-132;
White Elephant Railroad, pp. 133-140;
The Albany Branch, pp. 141-146;
Selkirk Yard, pp. 147-152;
Mohawk & Syracuse Divisions, pp. 153-206;
West Shore Electric Operation, pp. 207-234;
Chenango Branch, pp. 235-279;
New York to Buffalo Station List, pg. 280;
From Steam to Diesel (color photograph section), pp. 281-309;
Acknowledgments, pp. 310-311.
Stony Clove and Catskill Mountain Press, 312 pages, hardcover, 600 photographs; a color section; high grade glossy paper. Limited quantity produced.