A terminus that's both loop and stub

Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
In a book I came across this photo of the Interurban station in Baltimore. Online, I could find hardly anything about this station, so I've tried to photograph the photo for you:
IMG_20200530_174914.jpg

As I see it, there are two stub-ended island platforms, and a longer platform on the loop at the far end. (I have used the word "platform" a bit loosely here, for these roofed passenger areas may have had a floor height equal only to the top of the rail.)

Seems to me that some poles do double duty, carrying both the platform roof and the overhead. Also, on the tracks leading to one of the stub platforms, there's something dark between the rails. Does anyone know what it could be? Presumably it's on other tracks as well, where you can't see.

It's feasible to build this station with R1 curves and turnouts. It would make an interesting model with all sorts of operation potential. It could be one end of a single track or double track line, or you could have a fiddle yard. I know the WB&A, which ceased operation in 1935, ran both local and express services for passengers, and I imagine the loop being used for the express services.
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
17,257
1,811
72
St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
There area couple of Tram Terminus on the Boston system that sort of replicate this. Though not of course using trailing cars. the loop was likely used to turn a full train after it had gone face first into the Station.
Sequence of likely events:-
1 Train arrives in a platform punters get out.
2 Train reverses out of platform.
3 Train trundles round the loop turning complete train.
4 Train reverses back into a platform.
5 Train loads punters and departs.
Oops sorry for Train translate to Inteburban with Trailing Cars. I think the dark patches could be oil where Interurbans of even Box Locomotives have been standing? Very interesting layout, many thanks for posting.

EDIT actually looking at the black patches closer, I wonder if they are Pits for oiling underneath or other servicing requirements?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jasper
Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
actually looking at the black patches closer, I wonder if they are Pits for oiling underneath or other servicing requirements?
I feel you are close to the truth here, especially since the two patches visible in the photo are identical in shape, so they must be a deliberate feature, i.e. not come about by accident.
 
Software Tools

Software Tools

Registered
18 Jan 2013
35
20
Sydney, Australia
This "postcard" hand colour and enhanced image gives a better idea of the WB&A arrangements in Baltimore.

The balloon loop was used for the regular interurban "every hour, on the hour" services. The central stub platforms were for rush hour and special event extra services. For much of the day the stub tracks were used for laying over passenger and LCL freight equipment. The inspection pits are a major clue that they are not high usage tracks.

BTW, the WB&A later became the Baltimore and Annapolis, which continued electric operation until 1950.

F7B0C3D7-D71E-4CF3-9D0A-5FFB2B9BE26B.jpeg
 
Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
Thank you for posting! This photo clarifies things indeed. Much needed additional information for anyone modelling the scene. (I am considering it, though it won't be anytime soon.)

A few things that strike me:
- It looks even more as if there were no raised platforms.
- The stub tracks are spaced close together, leaving little space for passengers boarding or alighting. This seems to confirm that they're additional, and not main, passenger tracks.
- The track at the utter left, which I think is west, is inclined. I wonder why that is. Also, the building adjacent to that track looks to me as if it might belong to the railway, but that's a guess. (Edit: it's the freight house.)

Software Tools, where did you get your information?
 
Last edited:
Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
I found these two photos online, forgot to upload them earlier. I think their captions said no more than "Baltimore railway station" or similar. They might be the same place from the opposite angle.
unnamed _1_.jpg unnamed.jpg
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
17,257
1,811
72
St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Those pictures are of great interest but as usual raise some other questions. In the colour picture the 3 box motors on the keft are clearly laying over from freight working. But what about the passenger Trains clearly shown on the centre roads on the Black n White pics, there are clearly Passenger Tracks here and punters wandering about. So were all the cars powered and could thus drive in and out or were there power passenger cars with trailers that would mean a new power car for any that have run straight in to the stub roads? Hm as ever conundrums. Still make a great model though.
 
Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
With the American Interurban, the self-powered eight-wheeler was omnipresent, trailers seem to have been very unusual. The WB&A was exceptional in having articulated 12 wheelers. Here's one entering the loop:
Washington-Baltimore-and-Annapolis-Baltimore.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: dunnyrail
Madman

Madman

Registered
25 Oct 2009
13,613
528
Pennsylvania, USA
Thank you for posting those photos. My interest in all things Interurban, streetcars and trolleys has yet more information to glean.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jasper
Software Tools

Software Tools

Registered
18 Jan 2013
35
20
Sydney, Australia
There is a book, CERA Bulletin 130 "Every Hour On The Hour" published in 1993, which details the history of the WB&A (and B&A). The line has an interesting story, and the book tells it well. The book is not too hard to find.

BTW, there were two different Baltimore terminals used over time. The big ballon loop terminal was the first one and it is my understanding that pair of monochrome photos of non-articulated cars which you posted above are of the second terminal, which was close to the railroad station.

The initial WB&A Wood cars were equipped with 4 trolley poles and a plough carrier. The WB&A initially electrified using AC current but needed to run into Washington using DC power over streetcar tracks, which in the inner areas of Washington used conduit current collection, and in the outer areas used dual trolley wires. The so called Electric Pullman cars had to be equipped to deal with all of that. Later the WB&A changed to DC power, and Washington changed to single trolley wire outside the conduit zone, which made life much easier from a traction technology point of view. The Electric Pullmans were sold off and new steel cars, like the articulated set, were acquired.

BTW, when the B&A finally quit electric operation, some of their single unit steel motors were bought by the CA&E in Chicago, which demotered them and continued to use them as trailers for several more years. 6FD9500B-12C2-4C49-81DA-AF21243CE998.jpeg
 
Last edited:
Jasper

Jasper

Hey, I'm only being creative here.
11 Mar 2017
193
127
52
The Netherlands
Last edited: