Utica to Richfield Springs

The Richfield Springs Branch

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A section of the ROW just after it had been abandoned at East Winfield in 1995. The highway crossing in the distance is NY State Highway 51. Photo by Matt Gibbons.

This abandoned railway line was originally part of the Delaware Lackawanna and Western and then became part of Erie Lackawanna, and was known as the Richfield Springs Branch. In 1973, Delaware Otsego purchased it and it was known as the Central New York Railroad, a Delaware Otsego subsidiary. The Central New York operated the line until 1995, when it was abandoned due to lack of customers.

The line ran south from Utica to Bridgewater where it interchanged with the Unadilla Valley Railroad until that line was abandoned in the 1950s. From Bridgewater, the branch turned east to East Winfield, West Winfield, Cedarville, Millers Mill, South Columbia and ending at Richfield Springs.

Thanks to Matt Gibbons for contributing information about this route.

The Unadilla Valley actually was running into the autumn of 1960 and the rails were lifted that same autumn, complete by november.

John Z
Warwick, NY
5/20/2009

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Line is actually in use Utica to Cassville (Richfield Jct). The original (18XX) was Utica to Richfield Springs. When trains started running to Binghamton the line to the Springs became a branch. NYSW operates line from Utica through Richfield Jct. (Cassville) up the hill through Paris to Sangerfield and Sherburne. However, it is rare they operate to Sherburne. Line from Sherburne to Chenango Forks is out of service pendinging abandonment due to numerous washouts from Floods of 2006; there are no industries between those points in need of rail service.

Henry Sommers
Vestal, NY
1/23/2010

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What is the status of the narror gauge tracks being installed?

Jay Bernhardt
Richfield Springs, NY
9/30/2010

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A storybook book entitled "CLEAR THE TRACKS - The Story of an Old-Time Locomotive Engineer" by Joseph Bromley (©1943 McGraw Hill Books) wonderfully describes life and early operations on this line. Well worth the read. It's long out-of-print, but fairly easy to find used copies on eBay or Amazon.

T.K. Kraemer
Cumberland, MD
11/25/2011

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I believe the NYS&W RR has obtained $750K to repair the 2006 flood damage to the Utica branch of the former DL&W, between Sherburne & Chenango Forks, NY. The line is owned by the Industrial Development Agencies of Broome, Chenango, Madison & Oneida Counties, who want to preserve that rail corridor for future use.

Dick Kuehnemund
Endwell, NY
4/26/2012

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Shortened Link: http://a-r.us/j3f
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