C&M Railroad tunnel - Tuscarawas Co, Ohio
N 40° 22.806 W 081° 33.756
17T E 452243 N 4470097
Quick Description: A tunnel on the former C&M RR, built around 1872, south of Stone Creek, Ohio. Abandoned in 1976 by Conrail.
Location: Ohio, United States
Date Posted: 4/1/2012 3:42:45 PM
Waymark Code: WME480
This tunnel is found about a mile south of the town of Stone Creek in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. It was constructed as part of the Marietta & Pittsburgh Railway, which was built between 1871-1873. The tunnel is found between Wolf’s Station and Stone Creek, both of which had stations.
The main purpose for the rail line was to haul coal from the once numerous deep mines south of Cambridge. The original line was 103 miles long, originating in Marietta. The line passed through the cities of Caldwell, Byesville, Cambridge, Newcomerstown, and Dover, which was the end of line. In the late 1800's the line was reorganized as the Cleveland & Marietta (C&M) Railway.
The line eventually was acquired by the Pennsylvania Railroad, which already owned a rail line from Dover north to Bayard, and another rail line from Bayard north to Cleveland. Under PRR ownership, the line was an integral part of the direct link between Cleveland and Marietta. Despite the fact the road did join its namesake cities, it eventually would simply become known as the "Marietta Branch” of the Pennsylvania Railroad. The Marietta Branch was in its heyday during the early 1900s. The majority of traffic on the line consisted of trainloads of coal moving north to the Great Lakes. At one time the line was so busy that a northbound coal train would leave Cambridge every 20 minutes. Until the early 1930s, a daily passenger train also operated over the line round trip between Cleveland and Marietta.
In 1968 the Pennsylvania Railroad merged with the New York Central to form the Penn Central Railroad.
In 1976, the Penn Central, along with several other struggling railroads in the eastern U.S. became part of Consolidated Rail Corp. (Conrail), which was created to transform the nation's troubled railroad network into a profitable business. One immediate impact of the Conrail merger was the abandonment of thousands of miles of "low revenue" branch lines. The Marietta Branch was determined to be among the branch lines eligible for abandonment. In May 1976 the last train would operate over the line from Marietta to Dover. After the last train, almost the entire line was abandoned.
This part of the former rail line is now owned by the Ohio & Erie Canalway Coalition. The Buckhorn Creek Bike Trail is planned to go through this tunnel and north to Stone Creek. The trail already exists from about two miles south of here to Newcomerstown.
The north portal of the tunnel is found at N40 22.806 W81 33.756 and is fairly easily accessible from old U.S. 21 (Stonecreek Road). The south portal is at N40 22.663 W81 33.717; access is a little more challenging.
Rail Status: No
Current status: Closed / Blocked
Original Use: Freight
The "Other End": N 40° 22.663 W 081° 33.717
Tunnel Length: 800.00
Date Built: 1872
Date Abandoned: 1976
Suggested Parking Area: Not Listed
Website: Not listed
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