Glen Mills Station - Glen Mills, Pennsylvania
N 39° 55.193 W 075° 29.422
18S E 458093 N 4418980
Quick Description: This station, constructed in 1882, is an architectural gem, believed to have been designed by Frank Furness, the world-class Philadelphia architect who designed Philadelphia's Broad Street Station.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 1/30/2009 11:01:45 PM
Waymark Code: WM5PND
From Dan West’s web site ‘Pennsylvania Railroad Stations Past & Present’ (visit link
) This is an architectural gem--Queen Anne gothic style, red brick with black brick designs. It is believed to have been designed by Frank Furness, the world-class Philadelphia architect who designed Philadelphia's Broad Street Station. It is presently used by the West Chester Railroad as their eastern passenger terminus.
From a plaque just down the road – Glen Mills – An early industrial village. John Taylor built Thornbury (later Sarum) Forge here ca. 1740. He erected Pennsylvania’s first iron-slitting mill here in 1746; this was acquired in 1836 by the Willcox family for its Glen Mills paper operations. Until 1878 these mills made paper for U.S. currency; a “localized-fibre” paper was developed to foil counterfeiters. By 1858, when the railroad arrived here, this was a busy commercial area. [End of plaque message.]
From the ‘Comprehensive Plan for Thornbury Township’ is an excerpt of ‘A Brief History of Thornbury Township and its Architecture’ (visit link
) - The advent of the railroad in Thornbury Township fostered economic growth during the nineteenth century. Thornbury’s paper mills and nail factories produced much-needed goods for the Philadelphia market, and the railroad facilitated an exchange of goods. The Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington Railroad connected Philadelphia to West Chester and stopped at Glen Mills, Locksley and Cheyney. The construction of the train station at Glen Mills in 1882 and the accompanying station store represent some of the more significant architectural trends of the latter quarter of the nineteenth century. Today there remain three train stations in the Township: Glen Mills, Locksley, and Cheyney.
On a personal note, my brother and his family live close by to this station. Also, I rode this passenger train service many times from Philadelphia to Media. On one occasion (probably in the early 1970s), I rode this train from Media to West Chester and return, back when this was served by owl-eyed electric multiple unit trains.
The West Chester Railroad runs tourist passenger trains on a 16 mile round trip from West Chester to Glen Mills. This line is the unused portion of SEPTA’s R-3 Elwyn line, which is very scenic trip as it follows Chester Creek in Western Delaware County through eastern Chester County - (visit link
You can purchase a water color print of the station - (visit link
Some great photos of the station and railroad are available at the link listed below.