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Edward J. Brady collection


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Railroad Records

Technical Journal

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Edward J. Brady collection, 1897-2000 | Litchfield Historical Society

By Leith Johnson and Marcia Furman

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Collection Overview

Title: Edward J. Brady collection, 1897-2000Add to your cart.

Primary Creator: Brady, Edward J. (1927-2001)

Extent: 3.0 Boxes


The materials are arranged in two series:

Series 1: Technical Journal.  Series 1 folder titles are directly from Brady's notebook and arranged according to Brady's title page.

Series 2: Railroad Records and Documentation, arranged in four subseries which are arranged in alphabetical order by title.

Date Acquired: 01/01/2003

Subjects: New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad, Railroads - History, Shepaug Railroad

Forms of Material: Business records, Correspondence, Drawings, Manuscripts, Photographs

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

In the 1950s, Brady, an employee of what was then the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad (commonly referred to as the New Haven) and is now part of Amtrak, developed an interest in the Shepaug railroad branch. He acquired original New Haven records that provide detailed documentation of the crossings, bridges, and abutting structures. Records also document original rights of way and the New Haven's unsuccessful and successful petitions to abandon the line in the 1930s and 1940s. In 1973, Brady used these documents to write a description of the Shepaug branch, two copies of which are in the collection. There are also photographs, generally from the 1920s, of railroad crossings and structures.

Biographical Note

Edward J. Brady (1927-2001) retired as a supervisor of structures from Amtrak after 40 years of service to the New York, New Haven and Hartford, Penn Central, and Amtrak Railroads.

Subject/Index Terms

New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad
Railroads - History
Shepaug Railroad

Administrative Information

Repository: Litchfield Historical Society

Access Restrictions: The collection is open for research.

Acquisition Source: Robert C. Miller

Acquisition Method: Presumed to be a gift from Robert C. Miller.

Separated Materials: Large framed photographs are in the museum collections.

Related Materials:

New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad Records

Thomas J. Dodd Research Center

University of Connecticut


Preferred Citation: Edward J. Brady collection (2010-163-0), Litchfield Historical Society, Helga J. Ingraham Memorial Library, P.O. Box 385, 7 South Street, Litchfield, Connecticut, 06759

Other Note: This collection was processed with support from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 2: Railroad Records],
[Series 1: Technical Journal],

Series 1: Technical JournalAdd to your cart.

Series 1 is housed in box 1. It contains The Shepaug Valley Railroad 1866 - 1949, A Technical Journal written by Edward J. Brady

The description written in the Forward of the journal describes how Brady came across documentation and photographs originally belonging to the Shepaug Railroad and began to gather information including maps, records, engineer drawings and history about the railroad to include with the journal. Other items included are court documents that were used in evidence to close the line first in 1938, which was denied, then again in 1948 when closing of the line was approved. The bulk of the journal, in detail, describes the physical layout of the line. Crossings and bridges, and their locations are referenced to the photographs contained in box 2.  Description of station houses, facts about their structures, if they had heat, water or privys are also given in great detail. Brady also notes places such as Kelly's Crossing, Costello's Crossing, Bardleys Mill, Pond Brook, Mine Hill Quarry, Seeley's Crossing, Canoe Brook, Smoke Hollow, Griswald's Crossing and a Morrison flasher.

Folder 1: Technical Journal, compiled by Robert C. Miller, 2000Add to your cart.

The Shepaug Valley Railroad 1866 - 1949, A Technical Journal of the right of way, bridges, road crossings and buildings taken from the official NY, NH, & H RR files by Edward J. Brady.

Taken from the original journal put together by Edward J. Brady, Robert C. Miller amended its contents in 1993 into a finished version including photocopies of original documents gathered from the Shepaug Valley Railroad and the NY, NH & H RR that eventually took over the Shepaug Railroad line.

Folder 2: Technical Journal, original by Edward J. Brady, 1993Add to your cart.
Original journal includes mostly typed and some hand written pages. Some of the pages are marked with editing notations.
Folder 3: Physical CharacteristicsAdd to your cart.

Original draft hand written draft for the description - Right of Way: Hawleyville to Litchfield

Finished version included in the Technical Journal, Series 1: Folder 1.

Folder 4: Photocopies of R.O.W. and buildings, 1920 - 1927Add to your cart.

Photocopies of Right of Way and buildings. Pictures show dirt roads, buildings, fences and tracks.

Original photographs in Series 2: Box 3.

Folder 5: Interstate Commerce Commission, Finance Docket No. 11608, 1938Add to your cart.

New York , New Haven & Hartford Railroad Company Trustees Proposed Abandonment

Report of the Commission describing the branch proposed to abandon. Document gives specific detail of the history, description and financial costs such as maintenence to continue running the branch.

Photocopy - original in Series 2: Folder 6

Folder 6: Interstate Commerce Commission, Finance Docket No. 15602, 1948Add to your cart.

New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad Company Abandonment

Report of the Commission, certicicate issued permitting abandonment. Descriptions similar to Finance Docket No. 11608, the railroads history and costs to maintain the line, however included in this report present evidence of freight served by trucks due to improved highway conditions and the high cost to rehabilitate the track already operating at a loss impose an unreasonable burden to continue its services.

Photocopy - original in Series 2: Folder 7

Folder 7: New Milford Times Editorial, circa 1938Add to your cart.
Photocopy of article from New Milford Times arguing for the railroad to remain open.
Folder 8: 1948 abandonment letters, 1948Add to your cart.
Photocopies of business discussions regarding what other changes need to be finalized, other negotiations and demolition of the line for scrap.
Folder 9: 1932 - 1936 freight cars and tonnage by commodities, 1938Add to your cart.

Statement by Principal Commodities moved between points on the line and points beyond it. Sixty two commodities are listed in alphabetical order from Apples to Wool. Each commodity lists carload and tonnage amounts and gives totals for each year. Used as Exhibit No. 4 in Finance Docket No. 1106.

Photocopy - original in Series 2: Folder 14

Folder 10: Topographic mapsAdd to your cart.

Photocopies of U.S. Geological survey

Connecticut -  New Milford Quadrangle

Folder 11: Mileage from Bethel to Litchfield, showing road crossingsAdd to your cart.

Photocopies of Mileage sheets N.Y. N.H. & H.R.R.

Name and mileage at each road crossing: Hawleyville to Litchfield - Litchfield Branch

Description of the road crossing, mileage location, and grade of highway.

Other notations give abandoned date.

Folder 12: Mileage from Bethel to Litchfield, showing all crossingsAdd to your cart.

Photocopies of pages 18 - 26, Hawleyville - Litchfield

Lists each crossing with its mileage location and description such as turnpike, cuvert, cattle pass, formal name if a particular location, river, stream, etc.

The list also states the type of crossing if it is private, stone box, concrete pipe, C.I.P., grade.

Folder 13: Bridge DataAdd to your cart.

Bethel (Hawleyville) To Litchfield - General Data List

Bridge number, with mileage of location, file references, name of crossing, type of bridge, angle of skew, number of tracks and spans, and spacing of girders

Folder 14: Track DiagramAdd to your cart.

Photocopy of stations track diagrams for Abandonment of Line

Main Track and connection

Folder 15: Map (Line to be Abandoned)Add to your cart.
Photocopy of Northwest corner of Connecticut showing line to be abandoned as well as other lines in the area.
Folder 16: Stations Track diagramAdd to your cart.

Photocopies of individual stations, blueprints includes:

Litchfield, Bantam Station Grounds and two views of Washington, one close up the other from a distance to include rock formations.

Folder 17: Litchfield Turntable Drawing, 1897Add to your cart.

Photocopy of blueprint:

Shepaug, Litchfield and Northern R.R. Plan showing proposed additional rods and timbers for Turntable at the Litchfield Station.

Larger photocopy in Series 2: Folder 19

Folder 18: Property CardsAdd to your cart.


Form U 8, 1911 - 1916, Description of buildings, types of construction, date built, size, heating, type of roof, other

Form 1611-1, 1919 - 1930, Similar to form U 8 however includes changes, removed dates, sold, destroyed or retired notations

Copies of measured drawings from the back side of the original cards also included

Browse by Series:

[Series 2: Railroad Records],
[Series 1: Technical Journal],

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