Ohio Central Railroad System

The Ohio Central Railroad System (reporting marks OHCR), now a part of the Genesee & Wyoming family of short lines, once based out of Coshocton, Ohio was actually a combination of small systems under one banner, deliberately set up in this manner to allow the communities in which it served to feel more like they have a railroad to call their own. The railroad dated back to 1988 when a former owner, the late Jerry Jacobson, acquired a single segment of track in central Ohio and grew into one of the largest Class II, regionals in the country.  The OC, operated almost exclusively in Ohio (they also have a presence in western Pennsylvania), was broken down into three divisions, which include the Southern Lines, Youngstown Division and Pittsburgh Division.

Much of its trackage was former Pennsylvania lines (including the PRR's "Panhandle Route" main line from Gould, Ohio [Mingo Junction] to Columbus) but also includes ex-Erie Lackawanna/Erie, Wheeling & Lake Erie/Nickel Plate Road, and Youngstown & Southern (a jointly-owned PRR/Pittsburgh & Lake Erie [NYC] property).  Since the sale to Genesee & Wyoming the individual Ohio Central properties have lost much of their identity but remain on paper. 

Ohio Central 4-6-2 #1293 steams through Jewett, Ohio with a chartered excursion on October 7, 2006. This locomotive was built for the Canadian Pacific by the Canadian Locomotive Company in 1948. It saw just ten years of service before its retirement in 1959. It was subsequently sold to Steamtown USA in 1964 and acquired by Jerry Jacobson in 1996. Today, it resides at the Age of Steam Roundhouse in Sugarcreek, Ohio. Wade Massie photo.

Within Ohio Central's three divisions were no less than ten individual short lines. While these small railroads operated mostly as paper companies many carried its very own livery giving them a local feel to the communities they serve.  The Ohio Central's most famous corridor is the ex-Pennsylvania Railroad's "Panhandle" main line across central Ohio.  This once-important PRR route was largely double-tracked connecting New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Columbus, Indianapolis, and St. Louis.  Under Conrail, large segments west of Pittsburgh were pulled up.  In 2008 Mr. Jacobson decided to sell off his major asset to the shortline conglomerate Genesee & Wyoming, in the process becoming a multimillionaire.  It was reported at that time the Ohio Central boasted 70,000 carloads annually, contained 10 railroads, maintained 550 route miles, and had 200 employees.  It was sold for $234 million.  While the OC is no longer independently operated, the former owner gave the railroad historical movement one of its greatest assets when he completed his multi-million dollar "Age Of Steam Roundhouse" complex in 2012.  

Ohio Central RS18 #1800 (built as International Nickel Company of Canada/INCO #208-2 in 1958 by the Montreal Locomotive Works) is on one end of the "Akron Chapter Special" at Panhandle, Ohio on October 7, 2006. Wade Massie photo.

It is a meticulous replica of an original 18-stall roundhouse and for now will house his vast collection of steam locomotives.  Upon selling his railroad to the G&W, Mr. Jacobson set about constructing his new roundhouse in 2010 which featured an impressive 18 stalls and a 115-foot turntable.  The fleet continues to grow and currently includes 22 locomotives, a few of which remain operational.  The most recent acquisition before his passing came in December of 2015 when Woodward Iron Company 2-10-0 #41 was sent to Sugar Creek.  The Decapod was originally built in 1928 by the Baldwin Locomotive Works for the Alabama, Tennessee & Northern Railroad and sold to Woodward in 1948.   The facility also maintains 12 historic diesel locomotives.  

Clad in the OC's maroon, yellow, and grey three Geeps led by GP40 #3217 roll through Jewett, Ohio with their freight on October 17, 1995. Wade Massie photo.

Two other acquisitions occurred during late 2015 including McCloud River Railroad 2-6-2 #9 built in 1901 by Baldwin and remains operational, as well as U.S. Army 2-8-0 #612, a 1943 product of Baldwin.  In addition to the steamers others are under restoration.  Following Jerry's passing, the roundhouse opened its doors to the public in 2018, offering a rare glimpse inside an active roundhouse, a facility which has almost entirely disappeared within the industry.  Its very latest acquisition was Bessemer & Lake Erie 2-10-4 #643, added in August, 2019.  The big locomotive has sat forlorn on an isolated siding near Pittsburgh (McKees Rocks) for years.  Below is a list of the railroad’s former divisions and short lines operating within them:

Southern Lines

Ohio Central Railroad (OHCR):  The Ohio Central began in 1988 when Mr. Jacobson acquired the former Wheeling & Lake Erie/Nickel Plate between Harmon (trackage rights were obtained north of Beach City) and Zanesville.  At this time the railroad handled coal, steel, brick, plastic, clay, and lumber.  The properties he controlled at that time (Ohio Southern, Youngstown & Austintown, and Ohio Central) were collectively referred to as the Ohio Central Railroad System.

Ohio Southern Railroad (OSRR):  This was Mr. Jacobson's original short line, launched in 1985 over the former Pennsylvania between Zanesville and New Lexington, acquired from Conrail.  It also included a former New York Central branch between Glass Rock and FS Junction (located south of Zanesville).  Most of the latter is now out-of-service with the right-of-way owned by the state of Ohio.

Columbus & Ohio River Railroad (CUOH):  The largest individual part of the Ohio Central Railroad System, the Columbus & Ohio River was formed in 1992 when Jacobson picked up the old Panhandle Route from Mingo Junction (where a connection was established with the Wheeling & Lake Erie) to Columbus.  The sale also included a former New York Central branch between Hebron and Heath, as well as an ex-PRR branch from Cadiz Junction to Georgetown.  In all, it totaled 162 miles.  At that time, the railroad's headquarters was transferred from Sugar Creek to Coshocton in the heart of Ohio's Amish Country.   The CUOH grew larger in 1996 when it picked up Conrail's 3-mile Neilston Industrial Track (ex-PRR) in Columbus, providing additional customers.  Then, 2001 it acquired more industrial trackage around Columbus from Norfolk Southern.

Ohio Central 4-6-2 #1293 leads a chartered special through Jewett, Ohio under a rusting ex-Pennsylvania Railroad signal tower on October 7, 2006. The structure paints a sad picture of the line's former glory. This was the PRR's "Panhandle Route" to St. Louis, once double-tracked and featured dozens of trains everyday. It was downgraded and abandoned in segments by successor Conrail during the 1980's. Wade Massie photo.

Youngstown Division

Mahoning Valley Railway (MVRY):  The Mahoning Valley was acquired from LTV Steel in 2001 and resurrects the property (Youngstown-Struthers, which was previously the Lake Erie & Eastern Railroad).  Most of the MV is a disconnected former component of New York Central from Bayard (NS interchange) and Minerva Junction (W&LE interchange) to Hopedale where another W&LE interchange is found.   Altogether, the track totals 53 miles.

Ohio & Pennsylvania Railroad (OHPA):  Created in 1995, the Ohio & Pennsylvania Railroad began operation of the former Youngstown & Southern Railway (once controlled by the PRR and Pittsburgh & Lake Erie) between Youngstown and Darlington, Pennsylvania (via Negley).  It also included Conrail's short Canfield Branch, a former Erie/Erie-Lackawanna property.  The old Y&S was owned by Columbiana County Port Authority and Ohio Central's involvement ended in 2006.  Today, it is operated by the Youngstown & Southeastern Railroad, an Indiana Boxcar subsidiary.

The original Ohio Central Railroad System logo. Author's work.

Warren & Trumbull Railroad (WTRM): This was yet another project launched by the Mahoning Valley in 1994 when it purchased 5 miles of an old Baltimore & Ohio branch between Warren and DeForest Junction from CSX Transportation.  Once again, Mr Jacobson is named operator and forms the Warren & Trumbull Railroad.

Youngstown & Austintown Railroad (YARR):  Formed in 1986 when the Mahoning Valley Economic Development Corporation acquired a 4-mile segment of a former industrial branch from Conrail, originally owned by Erie/Erie-Lackawanna.  Mr. Jacobson was asked to operate the trackage, thus creating the Youngstown & Austintown Railroad.

Youngstown Belt Railroad Company (YB):  The Youngstown Belt began service in 1996 when it acquired 45 miles of the former Erie/Erie-Lackawanna main line between Ravenna and Warren.  This included trackage rights south of Warren to Girard and Youngstown, enabling through service to what is now its former Ohio & Pennsylvania Railroad.  It also tied in the system's other small properties in the region, the Warren & Trumbull, Youngstown & Austintown, and Mahoning Valley.

Pittsburgh Division

Pittsburgh & Ohio Central Railroad (POHC):  This addition came in 2000 when the Ohio Central picked up the former RailAmerica's Chartiers & Youghiogheny, a 42-mile section running between Neville Island and Arden with service to Walkers Mill.  It is another section of the old PRR Conrail no longer wanted long ago.

Aliquippa & Ohio River Railroad (AOR):  This very short section of track was formerly part of LTV Steel's Aliquippa & Southern Railway, running 9 miles north of the Pittsburgh area.  Acquired in 2002 with traffic based in chemicals, plastics, metals, minerals and stone it was renamed as the Aliquippa & Ohio River.

After a photo run-by Ohio Central 4-6-2 #1293 steams westbound along the former PRR "Panhandle" main line at Cadiz Junction, Ohio on October 7, 2006. Wade Massie photo.

While the freight trains paid the bills perhaps what the OC was best known and recognized for among railfans and the public was its large and continually growing steam fleet. The railroad just recently acquired former Nickel Plate Berkshire #763 (sister to famous #765) from the Virginia Museum of Transportation and plans are to still in place to one day return it to operation, which will certainly be a sight to see!  Aside from the big Berk, the OC’s collection of steam locomotives included 2-8-0 #33, 4-8-4 #6325, 4-6-2 #1293, 4-6-0 #1551 (this Canadian National steamer first hosted trips between Baltic and Sugar Creek in 1989), 2-8-0 #13, 0-4-0 #3, 4-6-2 #1278, and 2-6-0 #96.

Ohio Central Railroad System Diesel Locomotive Roster (All-Time)

Road Number Model Type Builder Year Built Notes
12S-1Alco5/1950Built as Timken Company #5912. Sold.
14S-2Alco5/1941Transferred to the Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Youngstown & Austintown #14 < nee-Newburgh & South Shore #8.
4545-TonGE-Sold.
52SW9EMD4/1953Sold. ex-Southern Pacific #2302 < nee-Texas & New Orleans (SP) #109
71SW7EMD11/1950Sold. ex-Little Beaver Creek Valley Railroad #71 < exx-Ohio & Pennsylvania Railroad #71 < exxx-Youngstown & Southern #71 < nee-Montour Railroad #71
8280-TonGE11/1945Sold to Byesville Scenic as #386. ex-Logansport & Eel River Short-Line #101 < exx-Eli Lilly Pharmaceutical #82 < nee-Genesee & Wyoming #22.
84S-2Alco8/1945Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Bay Colony Railroad #1052 < nee-Portland Terminal #1052.
91GP9EMD4/1957Sold. ex-Burlington Northern #1761 < nee-Great Northern #688 (Upgraded with dynamic brakes in 1959). Traded-in to GE in 1985 and acquired by Ohio Central in September, 1989.
226F40PHEMD4/1976Sold. Built as Amtrak #226.
233F40PHEMD7/1977Sold. Built as Amtrak #233.
271F40PHEMD12/1977Sold to Quebec's Metropolitan Regional Transportation Authority. Built as Amtrak #271.
280F40PHEMD4/1978Sold. Built as Amtrak #280.
288F40PHEMD6/1978Sold. Built as Amtrak #288.
301F40PHEMD4/1979Sold to Quebec's Metropolitan Regional Transportation Authority. Built as Amtrak #301.
400T-6Alco7/1968Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Copperweld Steel Company #400 < nee-Monongahela Connecting Railroad #400.
452F40M-2CEMD11/1980Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Canadian American #452 < nee Amtrak F40PH #348.
460F40M-2CEMD12/1977Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Canadian American #460 < nee Amtrak F40PH #269.
467SW-1EMD8/1949Sold. ex-Mahoning Valley Railway #467 < nee-Union Railroad #467.
476C30-7GE1/1980Sold to MRS Logistica. ex-Union Pacific #476 < nee-Union Pacific #2480.
531C30-7GE10/1980Sold. ex-New Hope & Ivyland #531 < exx-Union Pacific #531 < nee-Union Pacific #2538.
700GP10EMD3/1955Sold to ADM Transportation Company. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #700 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1028 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8107 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9107
702GP10EMD12/1955Sold to Missouri North Central Railroad. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #702 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1033 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8128 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9128
703GP10EMD1/1956Sold. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #703 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1003 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8142 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9142
704GP10EMD1/1957Sold to Bloomer Shippers Connecting Railroad. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #704 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1083 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8222 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9222.
705GP10EMD1/1955Sold to Conrad Yelvington Distributors, Inc. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #705 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1044 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8071 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9071.
706GP10EMD1/1957Sold to Pacific Wilderness Railway. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #706 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1071 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8228 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9228.
707GP10EMD1/1956Sold to Everett Railroad. ex-Qwest Communications Corporation #707 < exx-Midsouth Rail Corporation #1065 < exxx-Gulf & Mississippi #8148 < exxx-Illinois Central GP10 #8148 (Paducah rebuild) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9148.
722SD40-2EMD3/1980ex-New England Central #722 < exx-Florida East Coast #722 < exxx-Progress Rail Service #3756 < nee-Union Pacific #3756.
736SW-1EMD12/1941Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Amtrak #736 < exx-Amtrak #249 < exxx-Penn Central #8497 < exxxx-New York Central #8497 < nee-New York Central #651.
770GP9EMD3/1957Sold To Cargill. ex-Amtrak #770 < nee-Chicago & North Western #1726.
771GP7EMD2/1953Sold To Indiana Boxcar Co. ex-Amtrak #771 < nee-Louisville & Nashville #432.
773GP7GMD7/1951
1000F7AEMD12/1950Sold to Aberdeen, Carolina & Western. ex-Gettysburg Railway #81-A < exx-Dakota Rail #81-A < exxx-Milwaukee Road #81-A < exxxx-Milwaukee Road #47-A < nee-Milwaukee Road #48-C.
1001F7AEMD1/1949Sold to Aberdeen, Carolina & Western. ex-Gettysburg Railway #81-C < exx-Dakota Rail #81-C < exxx-Milwaukee Road #81-C < exxxx-Milwaukee Road #47-C < nee-Milwaukee Road #116-C.
1002MT-4 (Slug)Alco11/1957Sold. ex-Conrail MT-4 #1002 (Rebuilt as Slug.) < exx-Conrail RS-11 #7638 < exxx-Penn Central RS-11 #7638 < nee-Pennsylvania RS-11 #8638.
1003MT-4 (Slug)Alco5/1957Sold. ex-Ohio Central #1000 < exx-Conrail MT-4 #1000 (Rebuilt as Slug.) < exxx-Conrail RS-11 #7634 < exxxx-Penn Central RS-11 #7634 < nee-Pennsylvania RS-11 #8634.
1004F9BEMD3/1956Sold to Aberdeen, Carolina & Western. ex-Burlington Northern #971 < exx-Burlington Northern #9815 < exxx-Northern Pacific #6707-B < nee-Northern Pacific #7014-C.
1005MT-4 (Slug)Alco7/1957Sold to Georgia Central. ex-Conrail MT-4 #1005 (Rebuilt as Slug.) < exx-Conrail RS-11 #7607 < exxx-Penn Central RS-11 #7607 < nee-New York Central RS-11 #8007.
1006MT-4 (Slug)Alco8/1956Sold to Georgia Central. ex-Ohio Central #1001 < exx-Conrail MT-4 #1001 (Rebuilt as Slug.) < exxx-Conrail RS-11 #7625 < exxxx-Penn Central RS-11 #7625 < nee-Pennsylvania RS-11 #8625.
1007S-2Alco7/1948Sold. ex-City Services Company #1007 < nee-Monongahela Connecting #1007.
1077RS-3Alco9/1955Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Detroit & Mackinac #1077 < nee-Long Island Rail Road #1553.
1202SW1200EMD6/1954Owned by Age of Steam Roundhouse. Built as Aliquippa & Southern #1202.
1203SW1200EMD1/1954Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Akron & Barberton Belt Railroad #1203 < exx-Norfolk & Western #3375 < nee-Wabash #375.
1205SW1200EMD7/1955Owned by Age of Steam Roundhouse. Built as Aliquippa & Southern #1205.
1402GS1400Brookville--
1501GP7EMD4/1953Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Pittsburgh & Lake Erie #1501 < nee-Pittsburgh & Lake Erie #5736.
1545SW1500EMD2/1971ex-Reading & Northern #1545 < exx-Conrail #9502 < nee-Penn Central #9502.
1547SW1500EMD5/1969ex-Reading & Northern #1547 < exx-Conrail #9612 < nee-Reading #2762.
1663S-2Alco8/1948Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Steelton & Highspire #63 < nee-Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac #63.
1711GP10EMD--
1768SD45EMD2/1970Sold. ex-Montana Rail Link #342 < exx-EMD Leasing #1768 < exxx-Norfolk Southern #1768 < nee-Norfolk & Western #1768
1800RS18MLW4/1958Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-Erie Mining #1800 < nee-International Nickel Company (INCO) #208-2
1802H12-44FM5/1956Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. ex-North Carolina Ports Railway #1802 < nee-Yankeetown Dock Corporation #2.
1852H12-44FM1/1953Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. Built as U.S. Army #1852.
2072GP38-2EMD--
2075GP35mEMD1/1964ex-MP GP35m #2611 < nee Texas & Pacific (Missouri Pacific) GP35 #613. (Rebuilt by MP as a GP35m.)
2159GP38-2EMD10/1973ex-Norfolk Southern #5096 < nee Southern #5096.
2160GP38-2EMD10/1973ex-Norfolk Southern #5102 < nee Southern #5102.
2161GP38-2EMD8/1973ex-Norfolk Southern #5060 < nee Southern #5060.
2162GP38-2EMD10/1973ex-Norfolk Southern #5100 < nee Southern #5100.
2175GP38ACEMD6/1971ex-CSX #2175 < exx-Seaboard System #6266 < nee Louisville & Nashville #4045.
2187GP30EMD6/1962Scrapped. ex-Conrail #2187 < exx-Reading #3619 < nee-Reading #5519.
2257GP35EMD5/1964Sold to National Railway Equipment. ex-Conrail #2257 < exx-Penn Central #2257 < nee-Pennsylvania #2257.
2393GP35EMD1/1965Sold to Progress Rail Services. ex-Conrail #2393 < exx-Penn Central #2393 < nee-New York Central #6149.
2401SD20-2EMD7/1964Sold to Pacific Harbor Lines. ex-B&O/Chessie System SD20-2 #7701 < nee-Baltimore & Ohio SD35 #7405.
2421C30-7GE7/1978Sold to America Latina Logistica. Built as Union Pacific #2421.
2477C30-7GE1/1980Sold to MRS Logistica. Built as Union Pacific #2477.
2505GP35mEMD1/1964ex-Kiamichi #3802 < exx-MP GP35m #2604 < nee Texas & Pacific (Missouri Pacific) GP35 #606. (Rebuilt by MP as a GP35m.)
2912GP35EMD4/1964Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-Transdynamic Leasing #2912 < exx-Central Railroad of Indiana #2912 < exxx-Norfolk & Western #2912 < nee-Wabash #541.
2913GP35EMD4/1964Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-Transdynamic Leasing #2913 < exx-Central Railroad of Indiana #2913 < exxx-Norfolk & Western #2913 < nee-Wabash #542.
3000B30-7GE12/1977ex-Savage Alberta Railway #1012 < exx-Alberta Railnet #1012 < exxx-Burlington Northern #5485 < nee-St. Louis San Francisco #863.
3001B30-7GE5/1978ex-Savage Alberta Railway #1016 < exx-Alberta Railnet #1016 < exxx-CSX #5521 < nee Chesapeake & Ohio #8239.
3216GP40EMD11/1968Sold to Buckingham Branch Railroad. ex-Conrail #3216 < nee-Penn Central #3216.
3217GP40EMD11/1968Sold to Buckingham Branch Railroad. ex-Conrail #3217 < nee-Penn Central #3217.
3247GP40EMD12/1971Sold to Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority. ex-CSX #6847 < nee-Chesapeake & Ohio #4092.
3253GP40EMD1/1966Sold to VMV Enterprises (National Railway Equipment) < ex-Conrail Leasing #253 < exx-Wiregrass Central Railroad #3023 < exxx-Illinois Central Gulf #3023 < nee-Illinois Central #3023.
3254GP40EMD1/1966Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric < ex-Illinois Central Gulf #3025 < nee-Illinois Central #3025.
3262GP40EMD1/1966Sold to Buckingham Branch Railroad. Built as Rio Grande #3062.
3303SD40-2GMDD11/1974nee Canadian Pacific #5676.
3304SD40-2GMDD6/1972nee Canadian Pacific #5616.
3305SD40-2GMDD6/1973nee Canadian Pacific #5673.
3306SD40-2GMDD5/1972ex-Evansville Western #6001 < nee Canadian Pacific #5591.
3307SD40-2EMD12/1978nee Union Pacific #3498.
3308SD40-2EMD12/1979ex-Union Pacific #7882 < nee Union Pacific #3469.
3322SD40-2EMD--
3324SD40-2EMD2/1979nee Union Pacific #3537.
3328SD40-2GMDD7/1970Transferred to the Buffalo & Pittsburgh. ex-Ohio Central SD40-2 #3328 < exx-Wisconsin Central SD40-2 #6940 < nee Canadian National SD40 #5138.
3329SD40-2EMD7/1976ex-Union Pacific #3329 < nee Union Pacific #8059.
3339SD40-2EMD5/1977ex-Burlington Northern #7806 < nee Colorado & Southern #936.
3340SD40-2EMD--
3353M420WMLW7/1974Sold to Arkansas & Missouri. ex-Canadian National #3353 < nee-Canadian National #2553.
3354M420WMLW7/1974Sold to Arkansas & Missouri. ex-Canadian National #3354 < nee-Canadian National #2554.
3367M420WMLW9/1976Sold to Arkansas & Missouri. ex-Canadian National #3367 < nee-Canadian National #2567.
3588HR412WBombardier11/1981Sold. ex-Canadian National #3588 < nee-Canadian National #2588.
3613B36-7GE11/1980Sold to Progress Rail Service. Built as Santa Fe #7496.
3616B36-7GE11/1980Sold to Progress Rail Service. Built as Santa Fe #7499.
4022SD40-2EMD7/1976ex-General American Marks Company (GATX) #902 < exx-Missouri Pacific #8002 < nee Missouri Pacific #3218.
4023SD40-2EMD12/1973ex-EMD Leasing #6044 < exx-Illinois Central Gulf #6044 < nee-Rock Island #4794.
4024SD40-2EMD3/1975ex-General American Marks Company #7378 < nee-Missouri Pacific #3200.
4025SD40T-2EMD12/1978Transferred to Chicago, Fort Wayne & Eastern. Built as Southern Pacific #8520.
4026SD40T-2EMD4/1980Transferred to Indiana & Ohio. ex-Union Pacific #8801 < nee-Southern Pacific #8256.
4027SD40T-2EMD6/1980Built as Southern Pacific #8277.
4028SD40-2EMD8/1978Transferred to Indiana & Ohio as #3482. ex-Ohio Central #4223 < exx-Ohio Central #4028 < exxx-Union Pacific #B-4223 < exxxx-Union Pacific #4223 < nee Missouri Pacific #3223.
4029SD40-2GMDD1/1978ex-Ohio Central #5855 < nee Canadian Pacific #5855.
4030SD40-2EMD5/1979ex-Union Pacific #9934 < exx-Union Pacific #4270 < nee Missouri Pacific #3270
4032GP9GMD12/1956Sold to New Castle Industrial Railroad. Built as Canadian National #4517.
4091B23-7R ("Super 7")GE9/1989ex-Ohio Central #3185 < exx-CSX #3185 < exxx-Conrail #2030 < nee-Monongahela #2300. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2254 in 5/1972.
4092B23-7R ("Super 7")GE11/1989ex-Ohio Central #3186 < exx-CSX #3186 < exxx-Conrail #2032 < nee-Monongahela #2302. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2252 in 5/1972 and later became Union Pacific U23B #526.
4093B23-7R ("Super 7")GE3/1989ex-Ohio Central #3187 < exx-CSX #3187 < exxx-Conrail #2036 < nee-Monongahela #2306. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2251 in 6/1972.
4094B23-7R ("Super 7")GE11/1989ex-New Castle Industrial Railroad #4094 < exx-NS #4094 < exxx-Conrail #2033 < nee-Monongahela #2303. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2258 in 6/1972.
4095B23-7R ("Super 7")GE12/1989ex-NS #4095 < exx-Conrail #2034 < nee-Monongahela #2304. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2253 in 5/1972.
4096B23-7R ("Super 7")GE11/1989ex-NS #4096 < exx-Conrail #2035 < nee-Monongahela #2305. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2264 in 6/1972.
4097B23-7R ("Super 7")GE2/1990ex-NS #4097 < exx-Conrail #2037 < nee-Monongahela #2307. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2262 in 6/1972.
4098B23-7R ("Super 7")GE3/1990ex-Ohio Central #3188 < exx-CSX #3188 < exxx-Conrail #2039 < nee-Monongahela #2309. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2261 in 6/1972.
4099B23-7R ("Super 7")GE3/1990ex-Indiana Box Car Corporation #4099 < exx-NS #4099 < exxx-Conrail #2040 < nee-Monongahela #2310. Built as Western Pacific U23B #2265 in 6/1972.
4201B23-7GE4/1978Sold to Albany & Eastern. ex-Rick Franklin Corporation #4201 < exx-Metro North #802 < nee-Conrail #1904.
4202B23-7GE4/1978Sold to Albany & Eastern Railroad. ex-Rick Franklin Corporation #4202 < exx-Metro North #803 < nee-Conrail #1905.
4218GP30MEMD9/1963ex-Transdynamic Leasing #4218 < ex-CSX GP30M #4218 < nee-Chesapeake & Ohio GP30 #3024.
4221GP30MEMD8/1963Scrapped. ex-Transdynamic Leasing #4221 < ex-CSX GP30M #4221 < nee-Chesapeake & Ohio GP30 #3027.
4233B23-7GE6/1979Sold to Finger Lakes Railway. ex-BNSF #4233 < nee-Santa Fe #6376.
4233B23-7GE6/1979Sold to Finger Lakes Railway. ex-BNSF #4233 < nee-Santa Fe #6376.
4241B23-7GE6/1979Sold to Finger Lakes Railway. ex-BNSF #4241 < nee-Santa Fe #6384.
4602SD40EMD4/1970Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX #4602 < exx-CSX #8310 < exxx-Seaboard System #8310 < exxxx-L&N/Family Lines #1234 < nee-Louisville & Nashville #1234.
5407GP8EMD8/1953Sold to Econo-Rail Corp. ex-Conrail GP8 #5407 < exx-Conrail GP7 #5856 < exxx-Penn Central GP7 #5856 < nee-Pennsylvania GP7 #8556
5408GP8EMD12/1950Sold to Econo-Rail Corp. ex-Conrail GP8 #5408 < exx-Conrail GP7 #5944 < exxx-Erie Lackawanna #1214 < nee-Erie #1214.
6307FP9GMD1/1957Wore PRR Tuscan Red and pinstripes. Sold to Canadian Pacific for the railroad's business train. ex-VIA Rail #6307 < exx-VIA Rail #6515 < nee-Canadian National #6515.
6313FP9GMD3/1957Wore PRR Tuscan Red and pinstripes. Sold to Canadian Pacific for the railroad's business train. ex-VIA Rail #6313 < exx-VIA Rail #6526 < nee-Canadian National #6526.
6501FP9GMD10/1954Scrapped. ex-VIA Rail #6501 < nee-Canadian National #6501.
6594GP9EMD2/1958Sold to Cando Contracting Limited. Built as Baltimore & Ohio #6594.
6606GP35EMD12/1964Sold to South Kansas & Oklahoma Railroad. ex-Southern Pacific #6606 < nee-Southern Pacific #7709.
6640SD18MEMD12/1959ex-Chicago & North Western SD18M #6640 < exx-Precision National SD18M #1843 (rebuilt) < exxx-Southern SD24 #6343 < nee-Southern SD24 #2524.
6642SD18MEMD11/1959ex-Chicago & North Western SD18M #6642 < exx-Precision National SD18M #1845 (rebuilt) < exxx-Southern SD24 #6345 < nee-Southern SD24 #6951.
7063C30-7GE7/1980Sold to Progress Rail Service. ex-BNSF #5122 < nee-Burlington Northern #5122
7064C30-7GE8/1980Sold to Progress Rail Service. ex-New Hope & Ivyland #7064 < exx-CSX #7064 < exxx-Seaboard System #7064 < nee-Louisville & Nashville #7064.
7066C30-7GE8/1980Sold to America Latina Logistica. ex-CSX #7066 < exx-Seaboard System #7066 < nee-Louisville & Nashville #7066.
7067C30-7GE8/1980Sold. ex-CSX #7067 < exx-Seaboard System #7067 < nee-Louisville & Nashville #7067.
7131C30-7GE6/1985Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX C30-7 #7131 (de-rated) < exx-Norfolk Southern C36-7 #8484 < nee-Conrail C36-7 #6625.
7133C30-7GE6/1985Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX C30-7 #7133 (de-rated) < exx-Norfolk Southern C36-7 #8486 < nee-Conrail C36-7 #6631.
7137C30-7GE6/1985Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX C30-7 #7137 (de-rated) < exx-Norfolk Southern C36-7 #8490 < nee-Conrail C36-7 #6639.
7139C30-7GE6/1985Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX C30-7 #7139 (de-rated) < exx-Norfolk Southern C36-7 #8492 < nee-Conrail C36-7 #6643.
7220C-420Alco12/1965Sold to Arkansas & Missouri. Built as Erie Mining #600.
7230C-424Alco10/1964Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. Built as Erie Mining #500.
7499SD45REMD5/1968ex-Southern Pacific SD45R #7499 (rebuilt) < nee-Southern Pacific SD45 #8963.
7537GP10EMD10/1955Sold to Gettysburg Railway. ex-Conrail GP10 #7537 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7005 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7005 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7005.
7547GP10EMD11/1955ex-Conrail GP10 #7547 (rebuilt) < exx-Conrail GP9 #7322 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7322 < nee-New York Central GP9 #5922.
7548GP10EMD10/1955ex-Conrail GP10 #7548 (rebuilt) < exx-Conrail GP9 #7307 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7307 < nee-New York Central GP9 #5907.
7573GP10EMD10/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7573 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7239 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7239 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7239.
7574GP10EMD11/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7574 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7262 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7262 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7262.
7585GP10EMD10/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7585 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7244 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7244 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7244.
7586GP10EMD10/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7586 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7238 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7238 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7238.
7591GP10EMD11/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7591 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7254 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7254 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7254.
7594GP10EMD11/1959ex-Conrail GP10 #7594 (rebuilt) exx-Conrail GP9 #7258 < exxx-Penn Central GP9 #7258 < nee-Pennsylvania GP9 #7258.
7883C30-7GE7/1978Used as parts source. Built as Union Pacific #2423.
8082C30-7GE10/1979Sold to MRS Logistica. ex-Reading & Northern #8082 < exx-Norfolk Southern #8082 < nee-Norfolk & Western #8082.
8511B39-8EGE11/1987ex-Connecticut Southern #8511 < nee-Locomotive Management Services (LMX Leasing) #8511.
8530B39-8EGE11/1987ex-Connecticut Southern #8530 < nee-Locomotive Management Services (LMX Leasing) #8530.
8542C36-7GE5/1984Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. Built as Norfolk Southern #8542.
8702GP11EMD9/1954ex-Illinois Central GP11 #8702 (rebuilt) < nee-Union Pacific GP9 #282.
8712GP11EMD8/1956ex-Illinois Central GP11 #8712 (rebuilt) < exx-Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority # 7557 < exxx-Penn Central #7557 < nee-New Haven #1227.
8713GP11EMD12/1958ex-Illinois Central GP11 #8713 (rebuilt) < nee-Illinois Central GP9 #9372.
8976SD45-2EMD11/1972Sold to Larry's Truck & Electric. ex-CSX #8976 < exx-Conrail #6665 < nee-Erie Lackawanna #3680.
9009U30CGE2/1972Sold to Vintage Locomotives. Built as Detroit Edison #009.
9011U30CGE3/1972Sold. Built as Detroit Edison #011.
9100S4Alco3/1957Transferred to Age of Steam Roundhouse. Built as Baltimore & Ohio #9100.
9917SD40-2EMD8/1975Sold to Progress Rail Service. ex-Union Pacific #9917 < exx-Union Pacific #4212 < nee-Missouri Pacific #3212.
9940SD40-2EMD12/1979Sold to Progress Rail Service. ex-Union Pacific #9940 < exx-Union Pacific #4292 < nee-Missouri Pacific #3292.

Ohio Central Railroad System Steam Locomotive Roster 

The below information reflects Ohio Central's steam fleet at the time of the railroad's sale to Genesee & Wyoming.  All have since been transferred to the Age of Steam Roundhouse and the organization's roster has grown significantly.

Road Number Wheel Arrangement Builder Year Built Disposition
30-4-0TAlco/Schenectady1926ex-Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum < nee-Southern Wood Preserving Company #3. Currently Operational.
132-8-0Alco/Brooks1920ex-American Railroad Equipment Corporation < exx-South Penn Museum < exxx-Buffalo Creek & Gauley #13 < exxxx-Midwest Steel < nee-Kelly's Creek & Northwestern #6. Stored.
332-8-0Baldwin1916ex-Hocking Valley Scenic Railway < exx-Lake Superior & Ishpeming #33 < nee-Munising, Marquette & Southeastern Railway #44. Currently Operational.
962-6-0Canadian Locomotive Company1910ex-Horst Muller (Cambridge, Ontario) < exx-Steamtown National Historic Site (Scranton, PA) < exxx-Edaville Corporation (Wakefield, MA) < exxxx-Canadian National #96 < nee-Grand Trunk Railway of Canada #1024. Stored.
12784-6-2Canadian Locomotive Company1948ex-Gettysburg Railway < exx-Cadillac & Lake City < exxx-Steamtown National Historic Site < nee-Canadian Pacific #1278. Stored
12934-6-2Canadian Locomotive Company1948ex-Steamtown National Historic Site < nee-Canadian Pacific #1293. Stored. (Was well-known for hosting excursions over the Ohio Central out of Sugarcreek, Ohio.)
15514-6-0Montreal Locomotive Works1912ex-Steamtown National Historic Site < exx-Canadian National #1551 < exxx-Canadian National #1354 < nee-Canadian Northern #1354. Stored.
39600-6-0W&LE Brewster Shops1935ex-Silver Throttle Engine & Museum < exx-City of Canton < exxx-Nickel Plate Road #360 < nee-Wheeling & Lake Erie #3960. Stored.
63254-8-4Alco/Schenectady1942ex-Greater Battle Creek Foundation < exx-City of Battle Creek, MI < nee-Grand Trunk Western #6325. Stored. (Operated during Jerry Jacobson's ownership of Ohio Central.)


The same train as pictured above, GP40 #3217 is traveling through Scio, Ohio along the Pennsylvania Railroad's former Panhandle line on October 17, 1995. Wade Massie photo.

After the G&W takeover of the railroad it was announced that founder Jerry Jacobson "will retain rights to operate his steam locomotives and passenger cars on the property. Sources say he will build a roundhouse near his home in Sugar Creek, Ohio to stable the steam locomotives" according to Trains Magazine.  Alas, Mr. Jacobson sadly passed away on September 13, 2017 at the age of 74.   His legacy lives on in the multi-million dollar roundhouse he built.  To visit Jerry's "Age Of Steam Roundhouse" website please click here.   While the Ohio Central has become yet another fallen flag the G&W has pledged to continue the high quality of service the railroad was known for. So, if you are near Ohio’s Amish country or anywhere else in northeastern Ohio or western Pennsylvania you should certainly look up one of the OC's former lines, it was certainly a very interesting railroad.  Also, if you are photographer now is the time to get your shots of locomotives in OC paint before they disappear into G&W's orange, yellow and black.  




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Header Photo: Drew Jacksich




Researching Rights-Of-Way

A popular pastime for many is studying and/or exploring abandoned rights-of-way.  Today, there are tens of thousands of miles scattered throughout the country.  Many were pulled up in the 1970's and 1980's although others were removed long before that.  If you are researching active or abandoned corridors you might want to check out the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) Historical Topographic Map Explorer.  It is an excellent resource with thousands of historic maps on file throughout the country.  Just type in a town or city and click on the timeline of maps at the bottom of the page!



Studying Diesels

You will be hard pressed at finding a better online resource regarding diesel locomotives than Craig Rutherford's TheDieselShop.us.  The website contains everything from historic (fallen flags) to contemporary (Class I's, regionals, short lines, and even some museums/tourist lines) rosters, locomotive production information, technical data, all notable models cataloged by the five major builders (American Locomotive, Electro-Motive, General Electric, Fairbanks-Morse, and Baldwin), and much more.  A highly recommended database!



Electro-Motive Database

In 1998 a gentleman by the name of Andre Kristopans put together a web page highlighting virtually every unit every out-shopped by General Motors' Electro-Motive Division.  Alas, in 2013 the site closed by thankfully Don Strack rescued the data and transferred it over to his UtahRails.net site (another fine resource).  If you are researching anything EMD related please visit this page first.  The information includes original numbers, serials, and order numbers.