Railroad history in the area told
The recent Tribune Chronicle photo of the railroad crossing repair on Tod Avenue SW near West Market Street, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, is along a very historic transportation corridor. The B&O Railroad, Warren’s last railroad line, was constructed in 1882 and was located along the 1830s route of the Pennsylvania and Ohio canal, which ran from New Castle, Pa., to Akron.
The B&O Railroad, earlier the “Pittsburg & Western RR,” was Warren’s second “trunk-line” railroad, connecting New York to Chicago. The first such line was the Erie Railroad through Warren in the 1860s.
During 1904, the B&O Railroad was double-tracked and relocated south of Warren through Lordstown, where today it remains a busy freight corridor. It was constructed over the historic Salt Springs during the time before environmental assessments for projects. A long overdue historic marker for the Salt Springs story soon will be erected east of the site, at Kerr Cemetery, by the Mineral Ridge Historical Society.
The B&O Railroad “old line” continued to serve Niles and Warren industries including the Republic Steel plants. This line is now out of service due to a lack of customers, which, unfortunately is a reflection of Warren’s economy.