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Explore the B&O's Old Main Line with DCNRHS & John Hankey

posted Feb 8, 2015, 4:51 PM by James Lilly   [ updated Feb 12, 2015, 8:55 PM ]
CSX Freight Westbound at Sykesville, MD on the Old Main Line
The Old Main Line Explorer Study Tour Announced - May 9

Tucked away in a series of river and stream valleys, is the Baltimore & Ohio’s Old Main Line. Still operated as part of the CSX system, it is a heavy duty freight railroad handling coal, grain, oil and other traffic east or west between Point of Rocks, Maryland and Baltimore.

It was also America's first true mainline railroad and has been in service for 185 years. This all-day study tour, led by nationally recognized rail historian John Hankey, examines the original construction of the Old Main Line and its evolution from pioneer route to 21st century mainline. We will look at bridges, stations, civil engineering works, archeology, and the railroad landscape. At different points along the way we will discuss railroad operations, regional settlement patterns, and the many roles railroading played in the creation of our modern way of life. While railroading will be the primary focus, we will range far and wide in our discussions to include social, economic, geographic, and technology considerations. There will be many opportunities for photography at a half-dozen stops along our journey.

This event, the first in a planned series of in-depth study tours focusing on the Washington, D.C. region’s rail history, will put a fresh perspective on one of America’s earliest industrial achievements and is suited for the seasoned historian or railfan and for those new to the Old Main Line. Even if you think you know the Old Main Line, we are betting you’ll be intrigued and fascinated on this tour with John Hankey and DCNRHS!