Tom’s Raritan River Railroad Page




Forgotten History

of the

Raritan River Railroad


The Raritan River Railroad in the Newspapers




Click on the image or the link to read the articles



We’ll Say That the Raritan River Railroad Disposes of Snow with Neatness and Dispatch

South Amboy Citizen February 22,1922









Train Control Device Tested on Raritan River Railroad

Daily Home News (New Brunswick) December 30, 1925


This article is interesting in the fact that it mentions that testing was conducted with specially built crossing gates at the Gillespie Station crossing.

To date, I have found no pictures of the long lost Gillespie Station, and there is no exact record of its location.









Bad Wreck on the Raritan River R.R.

South Amboy Citizen August 17,1928


 From the Article: 

“The worst wreck in the history of the road” 

“Fireman Stockton from his side of the locomotive saw the speeding runaways…”



The description of the wreck at the end of the article matches the pictures seen on my wreck page, but the dates, and the story, are not the same.  Further research will need to be done to figure out the facts.


To see some pictures from this 1928 wreck, see this page:







Central Railroad Makes Formal Request for Raritan River Control

South Amboy Citizen May 22,1931







Last Passenger Train Travels over Raritan River Railroad

April 1938  Newspaper Unknown (either South Amboy Citizen or Daily Home News)


***A Must Read for the RRRR fan***

Full of great info

The 4th page was not in the collection.  Someday I will need to track down what paper this was, and find that last paragraph!








Raritan Has Seen its Last Film Wreck

(New York) Sunday News April 17,1938


Nice short article, mentions the silent film stars and staged train wrecks





Special Trip Marks Passing of Raritan River Railroad

May 28, 1938 – Newspaper unknown


Great information on the last passenger train rented by the NRHS on the RRRR in 1938 (or was it?)










RRRR Bridge Plans Approved

1941-1945 Newspaper Unknown


Back in World War II, the South River Swing Bridge had to be strengthened to allow the War Department to deepen the channel








Hercules Co. to Curtail Department

Dec 14, 1952 Newspaper Unknown


Since the early 1910s, Hercules was a major shipper and receiver of freight, and thus always very important to the RRRR.  In 1952 they announced they were going to scale down or terminate production of Cellulose Acetate in Parlin by 1959, and instead would open the first commercial Polypropylene plant in the United States in Parlin.   They noted that a high volume is expected for this new Polypropylene as well as HiFax, which is their Polyethylene product.  Hercules employed 2000 people in Parlin.











Steam on Raritan River R.R. Gives Way to Deisel Engines

October 24, 1954 Newspaper Unknown


Note the misspelling of the work “Diesel” in the article title; apparently this error was quite common at the time.


Article notes that the RRRR recently moved a generator for the JCP&L Company that weighed 504,000 pounds (252 tons).  I assume this was moved with the Steam Locomotives over the Sayreville Branch.





No reference info located with this clipping.

This is obviously a color enhanced picture.




No reference info located with this clipping

Location is Parlin, with station to the left. 

The Tank car was most likely for Dupont, which was just off to the right.





$27,500 Verdict for Back Injury

May 5,1956


Machinist on the RRRR wins suit, details not listed







A Pictorial History of the Raritan River Railroad

South Amboy Citizen Nov 2, 1961



A Pictorial History of the Raritan River Railroad

Date unknown




A Pictorial History of the Raritan River Railroad

Aug 31, 1961




A Pictorial History of the Raritan River Railroad

Sept 7, 1961





A Pictorial History of the Raritan River Railroad

South Amboy Citizen April 1962


Nice article, details some of the info regarding the silent movies and the train that went into Ducks Nest Pond






Probably a part of series “A pictorial history of the Raritan River Railroad”

April 21,1968





Drum Explodes Machinist Hurt

Date unknown


Another Machinist gets hurt on the RRRR




South Amboy Citizen Dec 1970


RRRR used to help construct the Garden State Parkway expansion




The Home News Aug 1983


Makes a nice mention of (possibly the last) gate tender in Parlin.

Also mentions the (little known) fact that the existing Freight Station in Milltown used to be the Passenger station.




The Home News Aug 1974


Small story about the gate tender in Parlin



Little Railroad on the right track

May 1974 - Newspaper Unknown








This Map of pending abandonments was posted in about 1975.  


It clearly lists 1. the Sayreville Branch and 2. the South River Branch

The South River Branch was not abandoned until after Conrail took over, probably around 1982.






Publisher Unknown


Possibly LABOR Magazine


This classic shot show Raritan River Railroad boxcar pointing straight up in the air after a collision on the Chicago & North Western Railroad in 1977.






Train Fan Pens History of Local Rail Line

The News Tribune May 1983


Nice article and interview with Fred Deibert, author of Rails up the Raritan.







Version 1.0










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