Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Fifty Three Years Ago Today
While being noted as one of the largest railroads of the United States is probably worth talking about, this is even more interesting. The following information is taken from our good friend, Wikipedia:
The Chicago and North Western was known for running "left-hand main" on double track mainlines. In other words, traffic was routed by default to the track on the left rather than the track on the right. In the United States, most railroads followed the "right-hand main" operating practice, while "left-hand main" running was more common in countries where British companies built the railroads. According to a display in the Lake Forest station, the reason for this was a combination of chance and inertia. When originally built as single-line trackage, the C&NW arbitrarily placed its stations on the left-hand side of the tracks (when headed inbound toward Chicago). Later, when a second track was added, it was placed on the side away from the stations so as not to force them to relocate. Since most passengers waiting at the stations were headed toward Chicago, the inbound track remained the one closest to the station platforms. The expense of reconfiguring signals and switches has prevented a conversion to right-hand operation ever since.
Although the picture on the front of this card was taken 75 years ago, this particular post card did not get mailed until January 30, 1965.