|Grand Rapids, Ohio
|Lucas / Wood counties, Ohio, US
|Dates of operation
|4 ft 8+1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
The Toledo, Lake Erie and Western Railway is a non-profit 501(c)(3), and heritage railroad operating on 10 miles (16 km) of railway, ex- Norfolk and Western Railroad, née-Toledo, St. Louis and Western Railroad (later acquired by the Nickel Plate Road) and crosses the Maumee River on a 901 ft (275 m) bridge, which was constructed in 1916. This bridge is the largest owned by a tourist railroad east of the Mississippi River. The TLEW owns from MP 15 in Waterville to MP 25 in Grand Rapids, Ohio, acquired when NW was filing abandonment on the line south of MP 15. In addition to the purchase of the 10 miles of mainline track, the TLEW had leased from MP 13.2 to MP 15 through Waterville from the Norfolk Western, which later became Norfolk Southern in 1982.
The Toledo, Lake Erie and Western operates the Bluebird passenger train, however operations were temporarily shut down due to track improvements needing to be completed in 2009, but due to vandalism, the railroad failed to reopen for the 2010 season. In 2013, the Museum's ALCO S4, #5109, was painted back into its original Chesapeake and Ohio colors in September 2013; another theft occurred soon after the 5109's repaint, the rare Nathan M5 horn that was planned to be used on 5109, was stolen off site and has yet to be found. An additional setback following the vandalism, was a failed attempt at creating a for-profit freight/non-profit passenger partnership in 2011. Following the premature termination of the for-profit's lease on December 31, 2014, Museum members returned on the rails, working on the passenger equipment, locomotives, and track in order to restore it all back into running order.
On February 14, 2014, the TLEW acquired the Waterfront Electric Railway Museum at 17475 Saylor Lane in Grand Rapids, Ohio. A car barn, shop and a 256 square foot brick building that will be used as a gift shop and to present photographs and historic displays. Also included in this acquisition, was a former CTA Elevated Car and a PTC Snow Sweeper. Due to the for-profit's control of the mainline, TLEW volunteers focused almost all of their effort in rehabilitating the new acquisition in order to make it a feasible work space and revenue generator. By May 10, 2014, the Museum had their first open house on property, which proved to be a success. In addition to the Museum, the TLEW has a static "Museum Train" located closer to Downtown Grand Rapids with Locomotives #1 and #202, a tool car, a caboose and passenger coach. Due to the acquisition of the property, this train is now mostly reserved for special events and meetings.
Ever since shutting down in 2009, the Bluebird Passenger Train has not made any revenue runs. However, volunteers have been working hard and made attempts for a return of their passenger train. Donations to help fund the restoration are currently being accepted at TLEW.ORG. In addition to the fund raising, motorcar runs over the Maumee River are being operated out of Grand Rapids every weekend during summer months to showcase the scenic Maumee River and surrounding area.
|Stored, awaiting restoration
|American Locomotive Company
|American Locomotive Company
|Display, awaiting cosmetic restoration
|Baldwin Locomotive Works
|Display, awaiting possible restoration
|American Locomotive Company
|H.K. Porter, Inc.
The Maumee River is a river running in the United States Midwest from northeastern Indiana into northwestern Ohio and Lake Erie. It is formed at the confluence of the St. Joseph and St. Marys rivers, where Fort Wayne, Indiana has developed, and meanders northeastwardly for 137 miles (220 km) through an agricultural region of glacial moraines before flowing into the Maumee Bay of Lake Erie. The city of Toledo is located at the mouth of the Maumee. The Maumee was designated an Ohio State Scenic River on July 18, 1974. The Maumee watershed is Ohio's breadbasket; it is two-thirds farmland, mostly corn and soybeans. It is the largest watershed of any of the rivers feeding the Great Lakes, and supplies five percent of Lake Erie's water.
The Wabash and Erie Canal was a shipping canal that linked the Great Lakes to the Ohio River via an artificial waterway. The canal provided traders with access from the Great Lakes all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. Over 460 miles long, it was the longest canal ever built in North America.
The Erie Lackawanna Railway, known as the Erie Lackawanna Railroad until 1968, was formed from the 1960 merger of the Erie Railroad and the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad. The official motto of the line was "The Friendly Service Route".
The New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad, abbreviated NYC&St.L, was a railroad that operated in the mid-central United States. Commonly referred to as the "Nickel Plate Road", the railroad served parts of the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri. Its primary connections occurred in Buffalo, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Indianapolis, St. Louis, and Toledo.
The Miami and Erie Canal was a 274-mile (441 km) canal that ran from Cincinnati to Toledo, Ohio, creating a water route between the Ohio River and Lake Erie. Construction on the canal began in 1825 and was completed in 1845 at a cost to the state government of $8,062,680.07. At its peak, it included 19 aqueducts, three guard locks, 103 canal locks, multiple feeder canals, and a few man-made water reservoirs. The canal climbed 395 feet (120 m) above Lake Erie and 513 feet (156 m) above the Ohio River to reach a topographical peak called the Loramie Summit, which extended 19 miles (31 km) between New Bremen, Ohio to lock 1-S in Lockington, north of Piqua, Ohio. Boats up to 80 feet long were towed along the canal by mules, horses, or oxen walking on a prepared towpath along the bank, at a rate of four to five miles per hour.
The Cincinnati and Lake Erie Railroad (C&LE) was a short-lived electric interurban railway that operated in 1930–1939 Depression-era Ohio and ran between the major cities of Cincinnati, Dayton, Springfield, Columbus, and Toledo. It had a substantial freight business and interchanged with other interurbans to serve Detroit and Cleveland. Its twenty high-speed "Red Devil" interurban passenger cars operated daily between Cincinnati and Cleveland via Toledo, the longest same equipment run by an interurban in the United States. The C&LE failed because of the weak economy and the loss of essential freight interchange partners. It ceased operating in 1939.
The Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railway, established in 1833 and sometimes referred to as the Lake Shore, was a major part of the New York Central Railroad's Water Level Route from Buffalo, New York, to Chicago, Illinois, primarily along the south shore of Lake Erie and across northern Indiana. The line's trackage remains a major rail transportation corridor used by Amtrak passenger trains and several freight lines; in 1998, its ownership was split at Cleveland between CSX Transportation to the east and Norfolk Southern Railway in the west.
The Grand Trunk Western Railroad Company was an American subsidiary of the Grand Trunk Railway, later of the Canadian National Railway operating in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. Since a corporate restructuring in 1971, the railroad has been under CN's subsidiary holding company, the Grand Trunk Corporation. Grand Trunk Western's routes are part of CN's Michigan Division. Its primary mainline between Chicago and Port Huron, Michigan serves as a connection between railroad interchanges in Chicago and rail lines in eastern Canada and the Northeastern United States. The railroad's extensive trackage in Detroit and across southern Michigan has made it an essential link for the automotive industry as a hauler of parts and automobiles from manufacturing plants.
The Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway is a Class II regional railroad that provides freight service, mainly in the areas of Northern Ohio and Western Pennsylvania. It took its name from the former Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway, most of which it bought from the Norfolk and Western Railway in 1990.
Nickel Plate Road 765 is a class "S-2" 2-8-4 "Berkshire" type steam locomotive built for the New York, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad, commonly referred to as the "Nickel Plate Road". In 1963, No. 765, renumbered as 767, was donated to the city of Fort Wayne, Indiana, where it sat on display at the Lawton Park, while the real No. 767 was scrapped in Chicago in 1964.
Cleveland has been and continues to be deeply rooted in railroad history.
The Interurban Bridge, also known as the Ohio Electric Railroad Bridge. is a historic interurban railway reinforced concrete multiple arch bridge built in 1908 to span the Maumee River joining Lucas and Wood counties near Waterville, Ohio. The span was once the world's largest earth-filled reinforced concrete bridge. One of the bridge's supports rests on the Roche de Boeuf, a historic Indian council rock, which was partially destroyed by the bridge's construction. The bridge, which is no longer in use, is a popular subject for photographers and painters, who view it from Farnsworth Metropark.
The Hocking Valley Railway was a railroad in the U.S. state of Ohio, with a main line from Toledo to Athens and Pomeroy via Columbus. It also had several branches to the coal mines of the Hocking Valley near Athens. The company became part of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway system in 1910, and the line between Toledo and Columbus continues to see trains as CSX Transportation's Columbus Subdivision. Portions of the main line south of Columbus are now operated by the Indiana and Ohio Railway and Hocking Valley Scenic Railway.
The Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway was a Class I railroad mostly within the U.S. state of Ohio. It was leased to the New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad in 1949, and merged into the Norfolk and Western Railway in 1988. A new regional railroad reused the Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway name in 1990 when it acquired most of the former W&LE from the N&W.
Toledo Terminal Railroad was a railway company in the U.S. state of Ohio. Primarily a switching railroad, it made a complete loop around the city of Toledo, crossing the Maumee River twice.
The Wabash Railroad was a Class I railroad that operated in the mid-central United States. It served a large area, including track in the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, and Missouri and the province of Ontario. Its primary connections included Chicago, Illinois; Kansas City, Missouri; Detroit, Michigan; Buffalo, New York; St. Louis, Missouri; and Toledo, Ohio.
The Plymouth Subdivision is a freight railroad line in the U.S. state of Michigan. It is owned by CSX. It connects the Plymouth Diamond at milepost CH 24.5 to Grand Rapids at CH 148.1, passing through the Lansing metropolitan area en route. Other towns served include South Lyon, Brighton, Howell, Fowlerville, Williamston, Grand Ledge, Lake Odessa, Clarksville, and Alto. Operationally, it is part of the CSX Chicago Division, dispatched from Jacksonville, Florida.
The Lake Erie and Northern Railway was an interurban electric railway which operated in the Grand River Valley in Ontario, Canada. The railway owned and operated a north–south mainline which ran from Galt in the north to Port Dover on the shore of Lake Erie in the south. Along the way, it ran through rural areas of Waterloo County, Brant County, and Norfolk County, as well as the city of Brantford, where it had an interchange with the Brantford and Hamilton Electric Railway. Construction on the mainline began in 1913. The railway began operations in 1916 as a subsidiary of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR), which had purchased the line before construction had finished. In 1931, it was consolidated with the Grand River Railway under a single CPR subsidiary, the Canadian Pacific Electric Lines (CPEL), which managed both interurban railways, though they continued to exist as legally separate entities. Passenger service was discontinued in 1955 but electric freight operations continued until 1961, when the LE&N's electric locomotives were replaced by diesel CPR locomotives and the line was de-electrified. In the same year, service on the mainline from Simcoe to Port Dover was discontinued, but the remainder continued to operate as a branchline which as early as 1975 was known as the CP Simcoe Subdivision. The remainder of the line was officially abandoned in the early 1990s, ending almost seventy-five years of operation.