rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 14th, 2007, 10:01 pm #11

www.davidrumsey.com/detai...me=Danbury
check out this map. it shows the housy not going up to white st. as on the 1875 map but now in 1893 joining the d&n where nichols/town hill st. meets gas hill st. and going into the main st. station. this would make sense for connection purposes even before 1886 when the housy leased the d&n and wanted to run all trains into the main st. station. cornwall says (caption, p 50) main st. was closed when the 1903 union station was opened. cornwall also says (p 26) that the nyhousyandnorthern ran its trains starting in 1868 from brookfield into a little depot in danbury on balmsforth avenue, which meets white st where the 1903 union station is and places it where that housy white st. depot shows on the 1875 map. he also says they had a link with the d&n which they tore out (temporarily?) for competitive reasons (to get the housy to lease them and retore it?) so the link shown on the 1893 map may have been there earlier. it does not show on the 1875 map.
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Tom Curtin
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Joined: March 28th, 2003, 10:44 pm

August 20th, 2007, 7:23 am #12

rrtax wrote:
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there is an interesting photo in the 'in the shoreline's shadow' book on p. 73 showing the site excavation for the 1903 station. the nyne depot is across the track from it. in the distance behind the site of the new depot appears to be another station. perhaps the housatonic depot, which the birdseye map shows located where the new station is going, was moved further east? do we know what happened to it?
do we know when the loop was actually put in? in 1886 when the housatonic leased the d&n and wanted to connect directly to it or shortly thereafter? it is certainly in before 1892 when the new haven leased everything in danb
Some discussion has been going on here while I was away on vacation.
First: RE the comments quoted above: Your comments on the photo in Shore Line's Shadow, the station you see "in the dtstance" on the opposite side of the tracks from the NY&NE station is the one-story east wing of what became the NH freight station. This and the 2-story west wing (built later) were standing until about 1990. AFAIK it was never a passenger station.
I do not know for sure when the loop was put in but I have alwaus assumed that it was in 1886 when the NH leased the D&N --- so, I agree with your surmise on that matter.
Second: I am not aware the [original] Housatonic ever had its own station anywhere in Danbury, regardless of what an old birdseye map may indicate. I could be wrong about this. My grandfather (born Danbury 1871) told me, when I was a kid, of the two old stations, the NY&NE station shown on the north side of the Maybrook Line, and the D&N Main St. station. AFAIK when the Housatonic leased the D&N it began using the Main St. station which of course required a reverse move
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rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 22nd, 2007, 12:51 am #13

memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/qu...map,ww2map
i may have already seen and referred to this map but if you look at structures 20, 21, and 22 and check the map key, they are labeled as d&n, nyne, and housy depots respectively, with the housy standing where the 1903 union station is now.
is there any chance that the single-story east wing of the freight house that we see in cornwall (p 73) was the old housy depot moved out of the way and recycled as a freight depot?
or, is the upper level of the two-story, west wing of the freight house possibly the the old housy depot sitting atop a new first floor? were two-story freight buildings like this common? were the windows on the upper level typical freight-house style? they look to me plausible for a passenger depot. and those windows do match the little sketch on the map with 8-ish windows on the side. the detail for the d&n and nyne depots on the map is quite realistic if you look closely. perhaps i am 'reaching' a bit here with this latter point, pun intended! - bob
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rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 22nd, 2007, 8:21 pm #14

i meant to say danbury's third pre-1903, not pre-1905, depot. the present union station/museum was built in 1903.
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Tom Curtin
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Joined: March 28th, 2003, 10:44 pm

August 23rd, 2007, 7:40 am #15

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i may have already seen and referred to this map but if you look at structures 20, 21, and 22 and check the map key, they are labeled as d&n, nyne, and housy depots respectively, with the housy standing where the 1903 union station is now.
I can't link to this map --- I get a file open error. Based on what you're saying I suspect there may be an error (or errors) on it. Pete Cornwall did write that the Housatonic used, beginning 1868, a depot "on Balmforth Ave." I had discussed that with Pete and we both think that depot was trackside in back of the Edelweiss Hotel (site of present Dunkin Donuts). I think the site of the 1903 Danbury station was unoccupied before construction of the 1903 station.
We have to be careful of how literally we take these old maps. I did download the 1893 Rumsey map and see that it has several errors -- a few misnamed streets and several misnamed buildings.
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is there any chance that the single-story east wing of the freight house that we see in cornwall (p 73) was the old housy depot moved out of the way and recycled as a freight depot?
.I really can't answer that authoritatively since it would have been 45-plus years before I was around!! However, based on my memory of that building, which was around until quite recent times, I am inclined to doubt it had ever been anything but freight storage.
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or, is the upper level of the two-story, west wing of the freight house possibly the the old housy depot sitting atop a new first floor? were two-story freight buildings like this common? were the windows on the upper level typical freight-house style? they look to me plausible for a passenger depot. and those windows do match the little sketch on the map with 8-ish windows on the side. the detail for the d&n and nyne depots on the map is quite realistic if you look closely. perhaps i am 'reaching' a bit here with this latter point, pun intended! - bob
What I referred to as the 2-story west wing of the freight house was constructed at the same time as, or maybe even after, the 1903 White St. station. It was mostly office space IIRC.
BTW I have one big request for everybody who writes on this subject: please do not refer to Danbury White Street station as "Union Station." It was never a "union station" nor was it ever called that when built or at any time in service!! It was built after the New Haven had leased or acquired all the tracks that served it and never served any railroad but the New Haven. The use of that term to describe this building somehow got started back in the early 1990's when the rehab project for it was getting off the ground. Somebody in Danbury decided they liked the sound of the name.
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rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 23rd, 2007, 2:10 pm #16

memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/qu...map,ww2map
try the link now.
i was at the danbury p.l. yesterday and copied an 1880 hopkins detailed street atlas of danbury which shows the nyhn depot at the site of the 1903 nhrr station. this is what i think became the housy depot in 1882 when the housy purchased the nyhn. this was perhaps the white st station that the housy and the nhrr served until ca. 1902, when it was razed or moved, and not the nyne white st station which was across the tracks and "out of the loop."
btw, the main st d&n depot was razed in 1914 according to another source at the library.
i would post the scan i have of the 1880 map here if i could figure out how to do it. any advice?
could also email to anyone who wants to see it. -bob
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Tom Curtin
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Joined: March 28th, 2003, 10:44 pm

August 23rd, 2007, 3:00 pm #17

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i was at the danbury p.l. yesterday and copied an 1880 hopkins detailed street atlas of danbury which shows the nyhn depot at the site of the 1903 nhrr station. this is what i think became the housy depot in 1882 when the housy purchased the nyhn. this was perhaps the white st station that the housy and the nhrr served until ca. 1902, when it was razed or moved, and not the nyne white st station which was across the tracks and "out of the loop."
Thank you, this time the link worked. I see, the station you're talking about is #22 on that drawing. I have a hypothesis that station -- if it actually was on that site --- went away when the loop was put in in 1886. It's possible this is the station that Pete Cornwall's rtesearch had placed on Balmforth Ave., in back of the Edelweiss Hotel (#25 on the drawing), and perhaps it was moved at some point. This is very interesting!
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btw, the main st d&n depot was razed in 1914 according to another source at the library.
That could be. At least the date is plausible, since the cornerstone on the Post office building which occpies the site today is 1915. Personally, I would be surprised if it really was razed as late as 1914 since it had ceased to be used in 1903, and to all reports had been a ramshackle dump before that! (But, I've been surprised before . . . )
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i would post the scan i have of the 1880 map here if i could figure out how to do it. any advice?
I wish I could help you with that but unfortunately I have a hell of a time posting images myself!
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rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 23rd, 2007, 9:07 pm #18

ramshackle indeed!
the mayor in the 1898-99 year book for the city of danbury, an annual summary of city operations, has directed the supt of public works "to erect a fence across the sidewalk on main st at both sides of the depot of the nynh&h to prevent a possibility of parts of that ancient structure falling on pedestrians."
boldface and italics are mine. this was too pricless not to photocopy! built presumably ca 1852 with the opening of the d&n, one does wonder how the main st. depot lasted till 1914 with pieces falling to the street.
will continue to dig. i love a good railroad mystery.
tom, contact me at rrtrax2@yahoo.com if you want me to email you the scan. that i think i can do. - bob
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Tom Curtin
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Joined: March 28th, 2003, 10:44 pm

August 24th, 2007, 7:38 am #19

The Main St. station wasn't the D&N's original one. It was built in something like 1870
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rrtrax2
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Joined: July 16th, 2007, 3:27 pm

August 24th, 2007, 10:50 pm #20

cornwall says (p. 50 caption and p. 51 pix) that this was the original depot in danbury. if this wasn't built until 1870ish, then there would have been no depot from 1852 to 1870. that seems unlikely to me. moreover, the style, with the large peaked gable and the board-and-batten siding, matches both the original depot in bethel and the still extant one in wilton. my guess would be that this is 1852 or shortly thereafter. i did see an undated map today that showed track to main st. but no depot yet. the main st. depot does show at least by the 1867 map at the danbury p.l.
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