Railroad Vistas The landscape of Western Pennsylvania by Paul Roth Soft Cover
Railroad Vistas The landscape of Western Pennsylvania by Paul Roth Soft Cover 2008 81 Pages
The topography of the southwestern Pennsylvania region is a stunning, ever-changing vista of hills and rivers, with very few flat expanses of land. Pittsburgh - where the Ohio River begins at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers - is the urban focal point of this region. From Pittsburgh, the terrain steadily rises from west-to east, eventually forming the western slopes of the Appalachian Range. The region is divided by broad river valleys.
From the aspect of river flow, the Allegheny reaches urban Pittsburgh from New York State in a southwesterly direction and the Monongahela flows northward from northern West Virginia, eventually reaching the city in a westward direction. From the confluence of the two rivers the Ohio flows northwestward and curves nearly 120 degrees to a southbound flow which demarks the OH-WV border.
All the rivers are commercially navigable. They are bordered by steep hills. The so-called "Golden Triangle" or "Point" formed by the three rivers contains the Pittsburgh civic center from which the terrain commences sloping uphill toward the East.
The two main trunk railroads serving this area provide a sort of topological outline, and are depicted in this volume in a west-to-east direction. After entering the Ohio River Valley from Ohio, these rail lines trace both sides of the Ohio River eastbound, the NS (ex-PRR, PC, Conrail) on the north, the CSX (ex-P&-LE, B&-0) on the south. CSX follows a single route through the area. NS splits into three routes before recombining into one east of Pittsburgh.
Thus, the southwestern PA region is traversed west-east by two major rail lines. The tracks outline the rivers and climb the hilly topography. They, along with the region's regional and terminal lines, provide a photographic metaphor for picturing the interesting geography of the southwestern PA region, as they traverse a variety of urban, rural and industrial scenery, landmarks and, especially, bridges. Given the terrain, the rail lines are perpetually running under and over a variety of bridge structures, many interesting, some unique. Many bridges of various types are highlighted in the illustrations.
Because of the railroad mergers and takeovers since 1964, the nomenclature used for captions, etc., could become quite complex. To avoid this, the text refers to the current railroad title or designation where possible. Family successions are given in an appendix, as is a list of abbreviations.
Also, locomotive types are identified only where interesting first-or-second generation models are depicted. Model suffixes, such as "-2" are not given.
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