Today's New York, Susquehanna & Western has its roots in a tidewater-to-Great Lakes railroad plan dating to the 1860s. The New Jersey Midland Railway was formed in 1870 as the merger of two existing projects looking to connect industrial Patterson, New Jersey, with the antrhacite fields of eastern Pennsylvania. After a series of reorganizations and mergers, the New York, Susquehanna & Western emerged in 1882. Through stock purchases, the NYS&W came under control of the Erie Railroad in 1898, and continued to be operated as a subsidiary until 1940. Bankruptcy came to the Susquehanna in 1937, of which it would not emerge until 1953.
Class J-2 No. 2345 leads the last mixed train from Sussex through Excelsior Mills on March 22, 1941. Photo by Robert F. Collins
Due to wartime surges of traffic, the first diesels arrived in 1943. With portside propoerty developed at Edgewater and leased to SeaTrain Corp., new revenue coming in allowed a modernization of commuter trains with new Budd coaches and Rail Diesel Cars. The economic recession of the late 1950s took their toll, and the railroad began a long decline as it retrenched to its New Jersey roots, with all western interchange partners gone and the road washed out west of Butler by 1979. The Delaware Otsego Corp. would be the Susquehanna's savior, reviving the railroad and growing the company into a top regional player in the northeastern rail scene.
GP18's 1804 and 1802 approach Sparta Junction in 1963. These Geeps introduced NYSW's well known yellow-and-black paint scheme. Photo by John Krause
"Susquehanna" is a detailed look at the operation of the railroad from Little Ferry, New Jersey, all the way to Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania from 1940 right up to the end of the 1970s. The book features many rare scenes of Russian Decapods, streamlined gas-electrics, RS1s, and RDC's along with a look at neighboring roads Lehigh & New England, the Lehigh & Hudson River, and the New York, Ontario & Western. The 1991 reprint includes an epilogue outlining the success of DO Corp. in expanding and reinventing the Susy-Q. A must for any fan of shortline railroading, add this Carstens Classic to your railroading library today!
NYSW 1001 approaches Babbit station. The ACF streamliners were introduced in 1940. Photo by C. George Krumm
98 pages, softcover.