The arrival of new Consolidations and Ten-wheelers also marked perhaps the greatest period of prosperity for the Rutland, sans World War II. At that time the railroad was under control of the mighty New York Central (owning slightly more than half its capital stock outstanding), which infused the road with financial backing and increased traffic by sending significant tonnage through the interchange at Chatham, New York. From there the freight moved across the entire Rutland system, going north to Alburgh, Vermont and then west to Ogdensburg where ships of the Rutland Transit Company (a Rutland subsidiary) continued on towards Chicago. This practice was likewise repeated for eastbound shipments.
(The below information on Rutland's Consolidations is dated effective following its 1913 renumbering.)
According to Jim Shaughnessy's book, "The Rutland Road: Second Edition," by 1906 the company was showing accounts in excess of $1 million, allowing it to pay off newly purchased rolling stock and locomotives as well as additional equipment bought a few years later, including the 2-8-0s and 4-6-0s. Times were so good and profits so high that the Rutland even began paying dividends in 1909. That same year an express, milk train was inaugurated, running the length of the system where it picked up shipments along the way. At Rutland the consist normally included more than 40 cars, some of which went east towards Boston via the Boston & Maine interchange at Bellows Falls while most traversed southward over the Corkscrew and on to New York City over the NYC.
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Unfortunately, the prosperous years were short-lived. The Rutland was simply one of many subsidiaries then owned by the NYC. Its involvement, and financial support, was slowly withdrawn after selling half its interest to the New Haven in early 1911. A few years later in 1915 the Panama Canal Act made it illegal for a railroad to essentially compete against itself using water transportation. In this case it was the Rutland Transit Company and since NYC had a stake in the entire affair this was deemed illegal. The result was that Rutland lost a substantial amount of through traffic and the docks at Ogdensburg virtually dried up. The Consolidations plied on, however, and continued hauling freight throughout the steam era. The last unit was not retired from the roster until September of 1952.
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