Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago Railway Company Photographs

What's online?

The entire collection is scanned and online.

What's in the entire collection?

The photographs in this collection, held by the Library & Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center, document several construction projects initiated by the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago Railway in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania (now Pittsburgh's North Side neighborhood) and the Manchester neighborhood. The photographs depict the construction of a bridge over Lacock Street in 1903, the construction of the Federal Street Station between 1905 and 1907, and subsequent additions and renovations made to the station between 1917 and 1924. Efforts to expand transportation facilities, such as those depicted in these images, helped the Pittsburgh region to grow into one of the country's main industrial centers.

About the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago Railroad Company

The Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago Railroad Company was formed in 1856 as a consolidation of the Ohio and Pennsylvania Railroad, the Ohio and Indiana Railroad, and the Fort Wayne and Chicago Railroad. Over the span of three years, it made several expansions, primarily throughout Illinois. However, due to financial problems, the company went bankrupt. It was reorganized on February 26, 1862 and renamed the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago Railway. The new railway leased lines throughout the Beaver Valley, in Pennsylvania and the Mahoning Valley in Ohio. It also included routes throughout Ashtabula and Cleveland, Ohio.

In 1869, the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) took over operation of the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago. PRR retained control until 1871 when the line was transferred to the Pennsylvania Company. The Pennsylvania Company returned the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago line to PRR on January 1, 1918. They retained control until 1968, when Penn Central bought out the Pennsylvania Railroad Company.

On July 14, 1973, the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne, and Chicago filed for bankruptcy; it was bought out by Conrail three years later. After the breakup of Conrail in 1998, the line was divided at Crestline, Ohio. The eastern half was bought by Norfolk Southern, and the western half was bought by CSX. The line is currently operated in limited capacity by several companies including RailAmerica, CSX, and Norfolk Southern.

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