The Barre Railroad
Engineering News—August 3, 1889


We give herewith a map and profile of this railroad, completed last spring at Barre, Vt. It was built to provide transportation for the products of the granite quarries, the working of which is Barre's chief industry. The town of Barre has had through the development, of these quarries a very healthy boom, at least for a place in New England. Its population in 1880 was 2,080. It is now between 6,000 and 7,000. The quarries are mostly located on Mill-Stone hill, lying about 4 miles south of Barre and at an elevation of about 1,000 ft. above it.


The Barre Railroad company was organized March 26, 1888, and the line was completed in April, 1889. The total length of main line and sidings is 13½ miles. The main line has one switchback. The maximum grade is 264 ft. per mile and the road rises 875 ft. in a little less than 4 miles. Some of the sidings have 20° curves. The road is standard gauge and substantially built and is laid with 60-lb. steel rails.

The locomotives used were built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works, and have 4 and 6 drivers. They are equipped with Westinghouse and Le Chatelier brakes. The latter, which works by using the cylinders as aircompressors, is used in running down the long hill, and avoids the heating and wear of tires that takes place with the usual form of brake applied to the wheel-treads. All the freight and passenger cars are equipped with the Westinghouse automatic brake.

The road was built by Ward Bros., of Kennebunk, Me., with WARD CROSBY, now of the firm of Crosby & Parker, of Barre, and formerly Division Engineer of the Boston & Lowell Railroad, as Chief Engineer. The present officers of the company are as follows President, A. D. MORSE; Vice-President, E. L. SMITH; Treasurer, C. L. CURRIER; Superintendent and General Agent, F. W. STANYAN; J. M. BOUTWELL, Assistant Superintendent in charge of road-bed and rolling stock. The general offices are at Barre, Vt.


The road reaches about 30 quarries, and the sidings are so laid out, that at 20 of them the same derrick which raises the stone from the quarry deposits it on the car. Besides the freight traffic and the work in carrying men to and from the quarries, it is expected that eventually the road will have a considerable passenger business during the summer months. The views from the heights to which the road gives access are of surpassing beauty, and it is expected that several summer hotels will be erected on Mill-Stone hill.

For the above facts, and for the use of the drawings from which our cuts are reproduced, we are indebted to the courtesy of WARD CROSBY, Chief Engineer of the road.

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