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Here will be found a wealth of information about the New York Central System, including sample freight and passenger schedules, passenger train consists, diesel roster and other information about the Central, once billed as America's Greatest Railroad. Among the great passenger trains will be found the 20th Century Limited, Empire State Express and others in their final years of operation as name trains. Come board the Century, now ready for passenger boarding at Track 17,Grand Central Terminal in New York City.



Locomotives: 629 road (1225 units),630 switchers

Freight cars: 118,439,including 1615 cabooses.

Passenger cars: 4292, including 375 electric MU,20 Budd RDCs.


The following are a few of the smaller railroads of 1851 that went into the formation of the New York Central Railroad in its 12,000 route mile form, which it reached by 1909. They are:

1.Hudson River Railroad

2.Albany and Schenectady RR

3.Utica and Schenctady

4.Utica and Syracuse

5.Rochester and Syracuse

6.Buffalo and Rochester

7.Cleveland,Columbus and Cincinnati(Big 4)

8.Michigan Central

9.Michigan Southern

10.Erie and Kalamazoo

11.Western Railroad

12.Schenectady and Troy

13.Hudson and Berkshire(Boston and Albany)

14.Troy and Greenbush

15.Harlem Railroad

16.Rome and Watertown

17.Buffalo and Niagara Falls

Once these and several hundred other companies began to be merged together under the leadership of Erastus Corning and the Vanderbilts, the form that the New York Central Railroad would assume right up to the 1968 merger with the Pennsylvania began to take shape. The railroad was completely dieselized by 1958. Here is the early 1960s diesel roster, many units still with their original road numbers, some units renumbered:

Alco FA1 1500 hp 1000-1045 46 units

Alco FA2 1600 hp 1046-1123 77 units

EMD F3A 1500 hp 1606-1635 30 units

EMD F7A 1500 hp 1636-1873 238 units

EMD F3A 1500 hp 1874-75,1877 3 units

EMD F3B 1500 hp 2404-2419 15 units

EMD F7B 1500 hp 2420-2474 75 units

EMD F3B 1500 hp 2475-2476 2 units

Alco FB1 1500 hp 3301-3322 22 units

Alco FB2 1600 hp 3323-3372 50 units

EMD F3A psgr 1500 hp 3500-3503 4 units

EMD F3B psgr 1500 hp 3600-3601 2 units

BLW DR44-1500 1500 hp 3700-3701 2 units

BLW RF16 1600 hp 3702-3709 8 units

BLW DR44-1500 1500 hp 3800-3803 4 units

BLW RF16 1600hp 3804-3821 18 units

EMD E7A 2000 hp 4000-4035 36 units

EMD E8A 2250 hp 4036-4095 60 units

Alco PA2 2000 hp 4200-4203 4 units


Alco RS32 2000 hp 2020-2044 25 units

Alco C430 3000 hp 2050-2059 10 units

EMD GP30 2250 hp 2188-2197 10 units

EMD GP35 2500 hp 2369-2399 31 units

GE U25B 2500 hp 2500-2559 60 units

GE U28B 2800 hp 2800-2823 24 units

GE U30B 3000 hp 2830-2889 60 units

GE U33B 3300 hp 2890-2898 9 units

EMD GP40 3000 hp 3000-3104 105 units

Many older units were used as trade ins on many of these new units. Following are the road switchers that were in service going into the 1960s:

EMD GP7 1500 hp 5600-5827 228 units

EMD GP9 1750 hp 5900-6075 176 units

EMD GP20 2000 hp 6100-6114 15 units

BLH RS12 1200 hp 6200-6236 37 units

Two GP20s were wrecked in 1961. Others renumbered 2100-2112. OLDER SWITCHERS AND ROAD SWITCHERS.

Alco RS2 1500 hp 5209-5222 13 units

Alco RS3 1600 hp 5223-5357 135 units

LH 1000 1000 hp 8400-8405 6 units

1200 1200 hp 8406-8411 6 units

Alco S-2 1000 hp 8500-8589 90 units

Alco S-4 1000 hp 8590-8667 78 units

EMD NW2 1000 hp 8700-8834 135 units

EMD SW7 1200 hp 8835-8921 87 units

EMD SW9 1200 hp 8922-8008 87 units

FM H10-44 1000 hp 9100-9110 11 units

FM H12-44 1200 hp 9111-9137 26 units

BLW VO1000 1000 hp 9300-9307 8 units

BLW S12 1200 hp 9308-9328 21 units

EMD NW2 1000 hp 9500-9516 17 units

EMD SW8 800 hp 9600-9627 28 units

EMD SW900 900 hp 9628-9646 18 units
1.New York-Albany-Buffalo-Cleveland-Toledo-Chicago
7.New York- Poughkeepsie(Suburban)
8.New York-Brewster-Dover Plains-Chatham.
NOTE; Portion ofthe New York-Chicago route hosted EMPIRE SERVICE corridor service between Buffalo,Albany,New York, and intermediate points.

Sample Passenger and Freight Schedules. Here in this section, will be presented a number of sample passenger and freight schedules of the New York Central System, starting with a 1940s era condensed schedule of trains 25 and 26, The Twentieth Century Limited, New York Central's flagship train and head of The Great Steel Fleet.
Table 1. Trains 25 and 26, The 20th Century Limited, Condensed Schedules.
Westbound, Train 25
Lv New York (Grand Central Terminal   1800
Lv Harmon                                        h1846
Lv Albany                                         h 2039
Lv Syracuse                                     h 2305
Lv Buffalo                                         h 0120
Lv Englewood                                    i0847
Ar Chicago (LaSalle St. Station)          0900 CST
h= stop only to receive passengers
i-stop only to discharge passengers.
Eastbound, Train 26
Lv Chicago (LaSalle St. Station)        1600  CT
Lv Englewood                                h 1612
Lv Toledo                                      h 2028  ET
Ar Albany                                     i 0602
Ar Harmon                                   i 0800
Ar New York (Grand Central)           0900
This train later got coaches in combination with another train and ran in as many as three sections as late as 1965 on occasion. The condensed schedule above is from the steam era. For 6 5 years the Century was the Central's standard bearer of the railroad's passenger fleet, which became known as the Great Steel Fleet starting in the 1940s. With valet service, a barber, and a train secretary, the Century was truly luxury on steel wheels and a train that was well patronized by many celebrities over the years when it ran as an all Pullman train.