A new book by Telford “Jack” Hill traces the history of the Pomeroy and Newark Railroad, a long-vanished rail line that used to link Chester County with Delaware, writes John Chambless for the Chester County Press.
The Pomeroy and Newark Railroad: The Railroad That Never Should Have Been Built is a 117-page paperback that puts together all of the available scraps of information about the mostly forgotten rail line.
When it was opened in 1872, the line was about 39 miles long. At the time, trains were indispensable, especially in Pennsylvania, which was overflowing with lumber, coal, and oil to help fuel the growth of the nation after the Civil War.
Railroad construction was “a get-rich-quick scheme of the day,” said Hill.
Pomeroy and Newark’s founders gambled that there would be a need to move goods from the port at Delaware City up to Pomeroy, near Parkesburg. But the gamble did not pay off. The venture failed and the railroad defaulted on its loans, causing the investors huge losses.
Despite several attempts to keep it going, the rail was finally abandoned in the late 1960s.
Read more about the new book in the Chester County Press here.