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Rock Island at Northfield MN

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  • Rock Island at Northfield MN

    Hello all,

    Does anyone remember or have information regarding the RI at Northfield, Minnesota? I visited in 1973 and 1974 and recall it being one of the best railroad-watching spots anywhere. RI and MILW ran on joint track and often had meets on the siding there. Right next to the RI-MILW was the yard of the MN&S. On the other side was the C&NW ex CGW line that was barely two rails in the grass. I believe it had a local powered by an ALCo RS2 or 3. All of this was in a grassy, friendly area where one could hang out and watch the MNS switch while waiting for RI, MILW, CNW and arriving and departing MNS (with four MU'd units) trains. What a place to enjoy spring days!

    My question would be, does anyone know about the joint line? Was it owned by RI or MILW? Where did the lines diverge to the north and south? And what has become of the four RR's of Northfield today?

  • #2
    Just a guess but from reading the RITS trackage rights I would say the line was owned by the Rock.

    Purchased trackage rights from Chicago, Milwaukee, Saint Paul and Pacific Railroad between Comus and Rosemount, Minnesota, via Dundas, Northfield, Castle Rock, and Farmington by ~11/1902.