Author Topic: narrow gauge and broad gauge  (Read 309 times)

Wayne Laepple

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narrow gauge and broad gauge
« on: January 26, 2018, 01:12:11 AM »
While undertaking some research on the early days of Pennsylvania's East Broad Top Railroad, in the board meeting minutes I found  multiple references to the Pennsylvania Railroad "broad gauge" as compared to the EBT's "narrow gauge." While I've seen present day comments about narrow gauge (2-foot), standard gauge (3-foot) and broad gauge (4'8-1/2"), they are tongue-in-cheek. This is the first authentic (1871) reference that I've come across.

John Kokas

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Re: narrow gauge and broad gauge
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2018, 01:27:31 AM »
Wayne,  interesting reference but in the early days (before consolidations of companies after the 1879 financial panic) there were multiple companies in PA alone that ran on broad gauge.  Most notable was the Erie and also parts of the original DL&W were of 6 foot gauge.  There were others in PA but I would have to dig out my PA history books to name more.  Were any close to the EBT?  Don't know for sure but it would be an interesting story.

Wayne Laepple

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Re: narrow gauge and broad gauge
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2018, 01:45:57 AM »
The EBT was chartered in 1871 and ran its first trains in 1873. The Erie was standard-gauged beginning in 1879, by which time it was an outlier among the rest of the standard gauge world of larger railroad companies. Two of the references I found specifically said "Pennsylvania Railroad broad gauge."