Groveland, New York
Delaware Lackawanna Western Station
Coaling Tower/Station
Circa 1910 - Bulletin No. 15 Photo Page

Here is  a  page from the Bulletin No. 15 from Roberts and Schaefer Co. of Chicago. It dates from around 1910.


Holmen Type with R. & S. Co's patented tram car distributing system.

Reinforced concrete construction throughout.

Elevating capacity 150 tons per hour.

Storage capacity 720 tons per hour.

24-foot receiving hopper with breaker bars.

Foundations thoroughly waterproof.

Steam Power.

Facilities for coaling on two tracks.

Delaware Lackawanna Western Coal Station Groveland NY

In the last quarter of the 19th century and the first quarter of the 20th, the Delaware, Lackawanna &
Western Railroad was a major carrier of anthracite.

It was created in 1853 by George and Seldon Scranton.  The DL&W was created from the combination of three railroads; the Cayuga & Susquehanna, the Lackawanna & Western (formerly the Leggett's Gap Railroad), and the Delaware & Cobb's Gap.

By the 1930s and 1940s gas and oil were replacing coal the DL&W began using diesel locomotives,  reducing the need for coal. The steam locomotive repair shop in Scranton closed in 1949. Many functions of the yard were shut down in the 1960s after the DL&W merged with its long-time rival, the Erie Railroad, to become the Erie-Lackawanna. The yard was finally closed by Conrail before 1980.

Related links:

Welcome to Steamtown - National Historic Site

Erie Lackawanna Railroad and Predecessors  -- Copious E,L RR info

National Railway Historical Society Mohawk & Hudson Chapter
Before Conrail: there was Phoebe Snow

Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway Volume 2

Phoebe says
   and Phoebe knows
   that smoke and cinders
   spoil good clothes
'Tis thus a pleasure
   And Delight
   To take the Road of Anthracite
Says Phoebe Snow:
   "The miners know
   That to hard coal
   My fame I owe.
For my delight
   In wearing white
   Is due alone to Anthracite.
Now Phoebe may
   by night or day
   enjoy her book upon the way
Electric Light
   dispels the night
   Upon the Road of Anthracite

Phoebe Snow Postcards and a

Coaling stations/towers were designed to fuel steam locomotives.  They came in all sizes and shapes.  Some were behemoth structures, while others consisted of a pile of coal, and a power shovel along a sidetrack. In the 19th and early 20th century, coaling stations were an integral part of every railroad. There were numerous coal stations; most towns with locally based locomotives had some type of coal facility.  There were also coaling stations located at intervals along routes, so that locomotives of through trains could fill up quickly, and maintain their schedules. Some were combined with water and sand holding structures. The introduction of diesel locomotives, led to the replacement or abandonment of these structures, and the use of  smaller overhead tanks holding diesel fuel.
"We are always in advance of other engineers when it comes to improvements in the handling of coal... We claim the credit of promoting and bringing to its high point of efficiency, the Holmen or Balanced Bucket Type of Locomotive Coaling Station..."

Roberts and Schaefer Co. 
Consulting Engineers and Contractors
Old Colony Building
Chicago, U.S.A.

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