Liberty Center to Maumee

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  • States: Ohio   
  • Railroads: NS, WAB   
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Looking southwest, an aerial view of the abandoned railroad right-of-way, now a rail trail, about halfway between Maumee and Whitehouse. Photo is from about 1600 feet above the surface after taking off from the Toledo Express airport. Photo by Aaron M., September 2008.

This line began in 1855 as part of the Wabash Railroad's line from Toledo, Ohio to Ft. Wayne, Indiana.

Passenger service on the line was discontinued in 1959.

By 1964, the Wabash Railroad merged with the Norfolk and Western Railroad.

Despite references stating that abandonment of the line from Maumee to Liberty Center came in 1969, it was officially abandoned in 1986 by Norfolk Southern. The rest of the line was later sold off to a shortline railroad.

Today, the ROW from Maumee to Liberty Center, OH, is now in use as "the southern fork" of the Wabash Cannonball trail, and is 17 miles in length.

Southwest from Liberty Center to Ft. Wayne, IN, the line is (barely) used by a short line railroad.

Thanks to Aaron M. for contributing information about this route.

The line barely used is an understatement. Maumee and Western (MAW) operate between Antwerp (OH) and Ft.Wayne (IN). The line between about Cecil (OH) and Defiance (OH) are currently used as storage. The whole line has a speed limit of 10mph with rusty rails as a driving condition.

Ryan
Toledo, OH
5/8/2010

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I know that recently the tracks in Liberty Center have been used, just a little, for use with the grain elevator... but I recently heard rumor that the train will no longer cross 109 at all, does anyone know if this is true?

Tyler
Liberty Center, OH
9/6/2011

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County Road S crosses this railroad east of CR 10 (east of Napoleon), and the road is paved right over the tracks. Similarly, where County Road 8 (on the west side of Liberty Center) crosses the tracks, the groove along the inseide of the rails is filled in with gravel, and there is no way a train could get through. The tracks certainly appear unused from just east of US 24 east of Napoleon through Liberty Center. As for the SR 109 crossing - that is in downtown Liberty center. Trains cannot get past County Road S, so they can't get near State Route 109.

As for the line through Napoleon - that is still used. A few trains a week switch businesses in Napoleon. The trains come from and return to the west. They usually go about walking speed; I know I can fly by them on my bicycle. The tracks through Napoleon, and from Napoleon to Defiance, are in terrible shape. It is not uncommon for a locomotive or cars to derail, but they are going so slow (about 5 mph) that they just come off the track without falling over.

John
Napoleon, OH
7/16/2012

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The Maumee and Western was sold to Michigan Southern (Pioneer Rail) and the old power has been taken off the lines and new power added. Track work between Defiance and Cecil and Antwerp is going on, with new ties, rail and some ballast. According to the Defiance Crescent News, the new owners are going to bring the line back to better standards to be able to service the customers along the entire length of the line and they are planning on fixing the segment from

Napoleon to Liberty Center. The new name for this railroad will be the Napoleon Defiance and Western RR.

trainfan56
Wauseon, OH
1/5/2013

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Shortened Link: http://a-r.us/r2g
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