Railroads in Erie County
The report of the Board of Public Works of Ohio, of January 16, 1838, shows the following named railroad companies
then chartered and receiving subscriptions by the state to their capital stock: The Ohio Railroad Co., the Monroeville
& Sandusky City Railroad Co., the Painesville & Fairport Railroad Co.
The board in its report of February 9, 1838, states that the estimated cost of the Monroeville & Sandusky City
Railroad was $56,000, of which the amount the company was entitled to from the state if the work was completed
was $18,666, and the amount of credit already loaned was then $14,667.
In addition, the report shows that applications had been made to the board from the following railroad company,
of which the plans and estimated cost of each work had been approved by the board as follows:
The Ohio Railroad, estimated cost $1,975,413
Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad, estimated cost 1,200,000
Little Miami, estimated cost 596,060
For these the anticipated loan of credit if they should be completed were:
Ohio Railroad $658,371
Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad 400,000
Little Miami Railroad 198,686
To the Mad River & Lake Erie $100,000 had been paid by special law.
On the 5th of March, 1842, the commissioners of the canal fund, in a special report to the Legislature, stated
that the following amounts had been advanced by the state to railroad companies:
Lake Erie & Mad River $270,000
Monroeville & Sandusky City 33,333
Painesville & Fairport 6,182
Ohio Railroad 249,000
Little Miami 115,000
Vermilion & Ashland 44,000
These six were the first railway enterprises in Ohio receiving aid from the state, and four of them crossed portions
of the Firelands. The Ohio and the Vermilion & Ashland railroads have only left their scars behind them, traced
in long lines of trees felled and spiles driven along their abandoned tracks through the forests.
Had the large sums received and wasted along their whole lines been expended in completing and putting the cars
in motion over a part they would have so far resulted in a success. As it was they ended in a total loss to the
state and to all involved in their reckless mismanagement. The Monroeville & Sandusky City Railroad was wisely
and successfully managed, becoming afterwards the Sandusky, Mansfield & Newark Railroad, and now operated under
lease by the Baltimore & Ohio Company. Throughout its long history it has been of great benefit to the state
at large, and especially to this portion of it. The Lake Erie & Mad River Railroad was also successfully completed
and is now part of the line extending from Lake Eric to the Ohio River.
The most successful and useful of the present railway lines across the Firelands are those which have been constructed
without any Government aid.
The Monroeville & Sandusky City Railroad Company chartered March 9, 1835, and the Mansfield & New Haven
Railroad Company chartered March 12, 1836, were united as the Mansfield & Sandusky City Railroad Company, which
consolidated with the Columbus & Lake Erie Company (chartered March 12, 1845) on the 23d day of November, 1853,
under the name of the Sandusky, Mansfield & Newark Railroad Company, which is still the legal owner of the
right of way from Sandusky to Newark, Ohio. On February 13, 1869, to evade the Ohio statute against foreign railroads
leasing Ohio railroads, the road was leased to the Central Ohio Railroad Company, the rent being guaranteed by
the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Company, which is the owner of substantially all the stock of the Sandusky, Mansfield
& Newark Railroad Company. When operated as a horse railroad the rails were made of hardwood, and the road
ran through Franklin Street, with a depot in front of the Wayne Hotel on Water Street. The depot of the Baltimore
& Ohio Road was for many years in a wooden house on the south side of Market Street, just west of the track
of the Baltimore & Ohio until about 1910, when the present modern depot between Market and Washington streets
The following account of the old Mansfield & Sandusky Railroad was originally published in the Railroader of
August 12, 1882, and found in an old scrap book formerly belonging to Eleutheros Cooke and now in the possession
of Fred Frey:
"Thinking perhaps a few lines in regard to railroading in the olden time may interest your younger readers,
I will try and give you a few items of the first railroad built in Ohio, the Mansfield & Sandusky City (now
The Baltimore & Ohio). When this road was projected the writer was a small boy living at Shelby, now an important
point on the road, and he well remembers the first meeting held at the old schoolhouse in the interest of the enterprise.
Among the speakers present was a Mr. Purdy of Mansfield, who made the astounding declaration that if the road was
built they could start a train from Mansfield in the morning and run it through to Sandusky, forty seven miles
in one day, and that the locomotive could haul ten cars, and each car carry one hundred and fifty bushels of wheat,
making fifteen hundred bushels of wheat that could be hauled in one train of cars. Everybody was invited to take
stock, and everybody did take stock and the work was begun and pushed forward with commendable zeal. The road was
laid with strap rail in this wise: First timbers called mudsills, 8 by 12, were imbedded in the ground lengthwise
the track, then crossties were laid on these mudsills, the ties were notched over the mudsills, and stringers 4
by 6 inches were laid in the notches and wedged fast. Then another strip 2 by 4 inches called ribbons was spiked
to the stringers and the iron rails (somewhat heavier than the ordinary wagontire) was spiked on to the ribbon
and the road was completed. Time and space will not permit me to give a full description of the locomotive and
cars used on this road. Suffice it to say that the locomotives were not as large as those now in use on our narrow
gauge roads, while this road was wider by several inches than our standard gauge. The passenger cars were about
one third the size of our present cars. A Mr. Jones was one of the first passenger conductors, and was a man of
great pluck and energy as the following will show: One day as Jones was going South near Plymouth his train was
ditched. It was a cold stormy day, very muddy, with nearly a foot of snow on top of the mud. They had but lately
begun to carry the mail. There was no telegraph and no sleigh nor wagon could get through with the mail. Yet the
mail must go. Passengers could wait. So Jones hired a pair of horses, hitched them to a handcar (they had no cattle
guards nor bridges in those days), put the mail in the hand car and came on to Shelby. There he hired a fresh team
and came to Mansfield. At another time after he got six miles out of Mansfield he remembered he had forgotten the
mail. He stopped the train, backed to Mansfield, got the mail and went on his way all right. C. G. Mack, then a
mere lad, carried the mail from the depot to the post office for which he received $1.50 a month. Here he received
his first lessons in railroading and afterward rose to the position of Superintendent of an important Indiana road."
Upon the ground now occupied by the Wells Fargo Express Company in 1840 was David Campbell's bookstore and the
Clarion office. A little east of it was a small railroad turntable, the terminus of the old Sandusky & Monroeville
horse railroad. Old Luke Ballard handled the reins. The whistle was a tin horn and the last signal of departure
was the crack of Luke's whip. The snakeheads and frowning banks and deep shadows of the deep cut were terrors to
the travelers on this great thoroughfare.
A Bit of History
Here is a bit of Monroeville history:
The first railroad in this part of the state was operated by horse power, and was built by the Hollisters, grain
buyers and distillers, about 1838. It ran from Sandusky to Monroeville along the present right of way of the B.
& O. It entered Monroeville near the present Sandusky street railway crossing, coming into the business section
down through the park, with terminal in a building that stood on the site of the building now occupied by George
J. Haas, on Main street. The building was used as a depot and grain elevator.
A passenger coach accommodating about a dozen people was used, and small box cars hauled grain to the Sandusky
market. Returning they were loaded with merchandise for Monroeville merchants.
The cars were driven by horses, sometimes single, and tandem when loads were heavy. The rails were made of 2x4
scantlings on which strap iron was spiked.
Heavy timber and spites were used as a base. There was a large bell in the terminal station which rang half an
hour before the departure of a passenger coach.
The Hollisters were wealthy men and erected many buildings in Monroeville, among them the Colonial hotel and the
The next railroad was built about 1843 and was operated with a steam engine. Wood was used as fuel, and the train
was often stopped in the woods to put on a supply.
The trains made about 15 miles an hour. The road passed through Monroeville on the present right of way of the
B. & O. and the depot was located in the Roby warehouse, which was destroyed by fire several years ago; then
being occupied by Yingling Bros. Cu. as a handle factory.
The Old Mad River Railroad
The annual report of Hon. E. Lane, president of the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad Co., for the year ending
June 21, 1853, furnished a very interesting historical sketch of that, the second pioneer of Ohio railways in point
of operation, but first in organization work of construction.
The company was chartered in January, 1832, and organized February 22d, following, being the only railway corporation
then in existence in Ohio. An experimental line was run and estimates prepared in the fall of 1832 and spring of
1833, and the first annual meeting of stockholders held January 8, 1834. July 6, 1835, James H. Bell commenced
his labors as civil engineer and on the 16th of September reported the line between Sandusky and Tiffin located
and the grading and bridging under construction.
The ceremony of "breaking ground" at the northern commencement of this road took place at Sandusky, September
17, 1835, and was attended by demonstrations of interest unusual in such cases, and quite without precedent in
that connection, it being the first occasion of the kind in the western states. The day was ushered in with a national
salute, at that time consisting of twenty four guns. At 11 o'clock a procession was formed in front of the Steamboat
(since the Verandah) Hotel, with Gen. W. H. Mills as marshal, assisted by Major White and Captain Kinney. The procession
was headed by the Sandusky Rifle Corps and other military; the officers of the Monroeville & Sandusky Railroad,
president and directors of the Mad River Road, and the chiefs of the Wyandot Nation from Upper Sandusky.
The point selected for the ceremony was on the East Battery, at the then northeastern boundary of the city, a point
on a side of the same opposite to what came to be the terminus of the road. Here the exercises were introduced
with prayer by Rev. J. E. Chaplin, then principal of Norwalk Seminary; after which the address was delivered by
Hon. Eleutheros Cooke. The most conspicuous personage of the occasion was Gen. Wm. H. Harrison, to whom and to
whose military and civil record, Mr. Cooke made prominent reference in his remarks.
At the close of this address, the president of the railroad company with General Harrison, supported by the officers
of the company in the presence of the assemblage, proceeded to break ground upon railway line, which act was followed
by twenty four guns. This being accomplished, the procession again formed and marched to the Mansion House, where
a dinners had barn prepared by the landlord, Mr. Henry Victor. Hon. Isaac A. Mills, of Sandusky, acted as president,
with Oran Follett and John Weeden, of Sandusky, and John Fish, of Monroeville, as vice presidents.
The dinner over, the regular toasts were presented, one of which was complimentary to General Harrison, who
responded in a speech of some length, in which besides recognizing the importance of the improvement then inaugurated,
referred to the early history of Ohio and the wars with which he was so prominently identified.
The means of the company then consisted almost wholly of subscriptions, payable in land. At the session of 1835-36,
the Legislature passed what came to be known as the "Pluredon Law," in doing which the credit of the
state, to the amount of $200,000, was loaned to this company, and under the same act county subscriptions were
obtained, with which means the work was prosecuted under constant embarrassments during the twenty years following
the date of the charter, until in 1852, the line was opened from Sandusky to Dayton, a distance of 157 miles. Some
idea of what this struggle was may be had when it is known, that it took four years (to 1839) to get the road in
operation to Bellevue (fifteen miles), the next thirteen years being spent on the line south of that point.
In common with all American railways at that date, the Mad River first used the flat or strap rail, selecting the
lightest known pattern, being two and one half inches wide, five eighths thick and weighing twenty two pounds to
the yard, or nineteen tons to the mile. This was supported by continuous wooden sills. So light a structure soon
gave way, when heavier flat rails were substituted. Ere long this would not permit the speed demanded by the traveling
public to say nothing of the serious peril to passengers and property, arising from what were known as "snake-heads,"
consisting of the loose ends of rails, which so often came crashing through the bottom of the cars from the track
below. To meet this demand, the T rail was supplied, and the bed graveled.
How many Sanduskians remember the old strap rail form of railroad ? Mozart Gallup recalled that when he came to
Ohio in 1844 he traveled from Albany to Buffalo on this old type of rail. As Mr. Gallup describes it, the track
known as the strap rail was built by laying heavy logs end to end and then fastening to these a flat strip of iron
about four inches wide. On this iron strap the wheels of the cars ran. These iron straps warped and bent after
but little use and sometimes curved clear up over the top of the wheel in such a way that the wheel was turning
inside of the strap instead of above it. On one occasion, on record, one of these iron straps penetrated the floor
of the car and carried a lady passenger's hoop skirts with it to the ceiling, causing much amusement and embarrassment.
Judge Lane's report referred with some detail to the matter of change in the route of the road between Sandusky
and Tiffin, which was changed from the original location via Bellevue, to the track of what was then known as the
Sandusky & Indiana Road, via Clyde. Such change of route was the subject of much discussion at the time, and
the cause of much feeling on the part of Bellevue, Republic and other points on the old line. Judge Lane stated
that the road by Bellevue traversed the outer edge of a limestone formation, a district abounding in sink holes
and nearly destitute of running water, rendering it impracticable to obtain the requisite supply of water. Nor
could proper gravel be found on the route. Upon examination of these facts, and the further facts that the route
was nearly four miles out of a straight line, the directors sought to ascertain by what means such location could
have been made. Engineer Bell's report in 1835 gave his reasons for his preference of route: That the "deep
ravines," "immense embankments" and "high bridges," of the straight line would be very
expensive, the grading alone costing $200,000, while both grading and bridging on the Bellevue route would be only
$71,360, with a maximum grade of eighteen feet to the mile. Another consideration with him consisted in the large
donations "of lots" made by the "enterprising proprietors" of Bellevue. To determine how much
there was of truth in such comparison of routes by Engineer Bell, the company had a survey made of the straight
line, when every position relied upon by him was found to be untrue. It was ascertained that Tiffin was thirty
three" miles from Sandusky, and 179 feet above that point, that a road could be constructed between them,
scarcely differing from an air line, with a regular grade not exceeding seven feet to the mile, except in crossing
the Cleveland and Toledo road at Clyde, where it was fifteen feet for one and one half miles. There were found
no streams or ravines or embankments. On the old route, the altitude of Tiffin was reached within fifteen miles
of Sandusky, and that compelled to surmount an additional elevation of 132 feet, and descend the same to Tiffin,
nearly a total rise of 311, and a descent of 132 feet. According to the equation of lines fixed by books on engineering,
the saving of a mile in distance is equal to the saving of $50,000 capital, and a rise of twenty feet equivalent
to a mile of level road. Under these rules, it was ascertained that in this case the saving of a straight line
over the Bellevue route was equivalent to ten miles in distance, or $500,000 in capital. Judge Lane then said:
"It is not for us to conjecture the influence under which the engineer was led to act, but the name of Bellevue
is reported to have been selected in compliment to him, and now known, that at that time he himself was one of
those 'enterprising proprietors,' whose spirit he commends."
In order to prevent a change of route, citizens of Bellevue obtained an injunction, restraining the company from
such action. So important, however, did the company regard matters that a new organization - the Sandusky &
Indiana Railroad Company - was provided, under which the Clyde line was built, when it was permanently leased to
the Mad River Company, and the old line subsequently abandoned.
Judge Lane's report felicitates the stockholders of the road on the provision of the steamers Mississippi and St.
Lawrence, which had "perfected the connection between New York and the Ohio River, and perhaps between New
York and Chicago," - a felicitation, which, in common with others based on water competition with the rail
in passenger business, was soon doomed to failure. The name of this road was subsequently changed to Cincinnati,
Sandusky & Cleveland, and later known as part of the Indiana, Burlington & Western Railway, and now part
of the Big Four System.
The suit of Chapman & Harkness vs. The Mad River Railroad Company, for injunction restraining the latter from
building or using the new track between Sandusky and Tiffin via Clyde, was decided January 22, 1857. The Supreme
Court refused such relief and provided for compensation to plaintiffs for stock subscribed, property depreciated
in value, right of way, etc.
The Register of October 21, 1889, prints a part of a pamphlet printed in 1833 entitled "Considerations on
the future prospects of the Mad River & Lake Erie railroad." It states:
"By an official report printed in the year 1832 it appears that there were transported on the Miami canal
down to Cincinnati 97,978 barrels of flour, 19,750 barrels of pork, and 40,425 barrels of whiskey. That canal is
only sixty five miles long. Should the whole country between Cincinnati and Sandusky become thickly settled and
highly populated and should the whole surplus produce of the immediate country and a share of the Miami canal transportation
all be brought into this railroad what must be the quantity and what the value of this produce ? What the quantity
and what the value of the goods on return? And what must be the number of passengers on this railroad ?
"At this time the old Mad river road ran into Sandusky on Pearl Street (then called Railroad Street). The
engine had no cab and when it rained the engineer stopped the train and went into a convenient farmhouse till the
rain was over. The passenger cars had seats along the sides like horse cars and were about the size of a stage
coach containing about sixteen passengers. The freight cars were about the size of cars now used in digging coal
The Register of November 20, 1883, contains the following statement:
"The New York Times of November 6th contains the announcement of the death of William Swinburne, the builder
of the first railroad locomotive ever turned out of the famous Paterson, New Jersey, shops. This locomotive was
the 'Sandusky' and was built to run on what was then known as the Mad River road (now part of the 'Big Four') which
was then the only railroad west of Utica, New York, and was a strap railroad running from Sandusky via Bellevue
to Tiffin. The locomotive was placed on the old Jersey railroad on October 6th, 1837, for a trial trip and as it
was found to work satisfactorily it was a few days later shipped from Paterson on a scow to New York Bay and from
there via the Hudson and canal to Buffalo at which place it was placed aboard the schooner Sandusky commanded by
Captain McGee and brought here.
"Captain McGee says the new locomotive had been the talk of the country hereabouts for weeks and every one
was curious to see it. When the schooner landed with it here on December 2d, 1837, McGee found a great crowd of
the people in town they having flocked into the city from all parts of the county to get a look at the pioneer
locomotive. The late Thomas Hogg for many years a resident of Ottawa County, Ohio, and who had helped build the
engine, came up from Buffalo on the schooner and assisted in unloading the locomotive at what is now known as Marsh's
dock at the foot of Wayne Street. The Mad River railroad ran along Wayne street at that time and the locomotive
after a good deal of hard work was gotten on the track at a point near where the United States Express Company
now stands. It was a great day for Sandusky when that engine arrived. Captain McGee tells us that with few exceptions
every man in town celebrated the event. Those who did not celebrate were either sick abed or were temperance men
and would not."
The Register of November 16, 1887, describes the unloading of the engine 'Sandusky', December 2, 1837, and says
it was drawn by an ox team on a sled to Knight's blacksmith shop on Columbus Avenues, near where the American Bank
now stands, where the blacksmith work was completed, and the engine set up. It was a little larger than the engines
now used to haul and operate threshing machines. "The locomotive was housed in a shed at the foot of Lawrence
street and was used to haul material while construction was going on. * * * The first train was chartered and ran
from Sandusky to Bellevue and return in the fall of 1838. Thomas Hogg was the first engineer; Conrad Poppenbo was
the first fireman and Paul Claner was the first wood passer, Charles Higgins was the first conductor. The train
consisted of the locomotive 'Sandusky', a small passenger coach and a still smaller freight car. Thomas Hogg was
a native of England and for many years after retiring from an engineer's position with the M. R. & L. E. R.
R. he held the position of master mechanic of the Sandusky, Mansfield & Newark R. R., now a part of the B.
& O. R. R.
"Conrad Poppenbo was a native of Westphalia, Germany, and after the retirement of Thomas Hogg from the position
of engineer, he became the engineer on the Sandusky and Paul Clanor the fireman. Conrad Poppenbo continued to run
a locomotive until 1859 when he resigned and moved on a farm near New Riegel, Seneca County, Ohio, where he died
Named All Engines
The first locomotives in service on the M. R. & L. E. R. R. and the years these engines were put in service
were: "Sandusky," 1837; "Lane," 1839; "Wyandot," 1841, and the "Seneca,"
1841. Up to 1854 the company put in service 41 locomotives. The early engines were of the two driver type. The
"Wyandot," built in 1841, was one of the four driver type. In 1851, the "Sandusky II" was built.
This was the first of the six driver types. All of the engines built in this period were given names. For instance,
the "Bellevue" was put in service in 1849, the "Fremont" in 1852, the "Huron" in
1852, the "Castalia" in 1852, and the "Clyde" in 1853. Six of the early locomotives were built
by the Portland Company works between 1849 and 1852.
The payroll of the M. R. & L. E. R. R., or the Sandusky, Dayton & Cincinnati R. R. as it was later known,
in 1861, shows that engineers, for a full month's pay received $67.50. Passenger conductors were paid $60. Freight
conductors received $50. Brakemen were paid $30. Firemen received $33.75. Other wages paid were: Foremen, $65;
master mechanic, $100, and clerk $50. There was variance in the pay of shop workers. Old payrolls, in the possession
of Mr. Harris, show that the road's payroll for May, 1861, as approved by Superintendent Rice, totaled $15,119.26.
Sandusky being the important shop point of the line and the terminal of the road, was the greatest beneficiary
from the payroll. Train crew men as well as shop workers resided here and their number ran well into the hundreds.
On November 19, 1906, Isaac Coles died. He came to Sandusky in 1848. His first job was to saw six cords of wood
for 50 cents for the Townsend House. He later owned a team, and used to tell of hauling cars on the old Mad River
road on Water Street that had four wheels and were eight feet long, and would contain twenty five barrels of flour.
The boxcars were little larger than a wagon box; there were ten of them to a train, which made eight or ten miles
The Register of December 10, 1864, described the luxurious wood train of the Mad River Railroad. This was a train
operated to cut down and gather wood to be burned by the old wood burning locomotives. The train seems to have
been about half as luxurious as the ordinary work train of a modern road.
The Sandusky Clarion of June 8, 1849, contains the timetable of the Mad River Road announcing the rates of fare
to various points.
It is somewhat interesting to observe that at this time butter was worth 10 cents a pound and eggs 6% cents a dozen,
and that the present fare to Tiffin is 56 cents and was then $1.50.
The Clarion of May 27, 1848, advertises that it will make the trip from Sandusky to Cincinnati via the Little Miami
Railroad in nineteen hours.
On May 20, 1911, Samuel J. Catherman died at the age of ninety three. He designed the reversible seats for passenger
cars and invented the idea of the end doors for passenger coaches instead of the side doors used up to that time.
The Junction Railroad was originally organized to connect the railroad between Cleveland and Toledo through Sandusky.
Its charter is in the Carnegie Library. On June 28, 1850, a meeting was held to help the road at Euterpean Hall.
On November 17, 1850, the contract to build the road was let, and the Clarion of July 8, 1853, describes the laying
of the rails on Railroad Street. On July 23, 1853, the first train passed over the rails. On August 4, 1853, the
drawbridge on East Washington Street was finished. On September 13, 1853, the first passenger train came through
from Cleveland. On August 30, 1853, the first passenger train from Sandusky to Chicago passed through the city.
Old residents describe long freight trains passing through the city over Railroad Street at that time.
The Junction Railroad is now part of the Lake Shore System. The following account of the opening of the Northern
Division of the Lake Shore Railroad is taken from the Register of March 13, 1872:
"One morning in December, 1858, Conductor O. J. True called 'all aboard for Sandusky' at the station at Port
Clinton and gave notice that his train would not return by that route, and those who expected to return that night
had better stay home. It was with a feeling of bitterness that the Port Clintonites saw the train depart realizing
as they did that they had lost the last chance of making their pleasant little village a metropolis. Not only was
Port Clinton sorry, but every station on the route was vexed that the line had been abandoned. Years passed and
the line came under the control of live wide awake railroad men who saw the great advantage of the abandoned route
over the other one to which favor had been shown. At last it was decided by the great powers of the Lake Shore
& Michigan Southern Railway that the old northern division route to Toledo should be rebuilt. Every step of
the work has been anxiously watched and when it was announced that the track had been laid over Pipe Creek, and
had reached the Bay Bridge, every one seemed to think that the bay city would awaken from the lethargy into which
she had plunged 14 years ago and would now take her rightful place among the great cities on the great chain of
lakes. By the completion of the northern division Sandusky railroad facilities are very much increased, and when
the much talked of Wheeling & Lake Erie Road is built nothing ought to prevent us becoming a leading port of
export and entry on Lake Erie.
"As before stated the last train over the northern division left Port Clinton 14 years ago. The 12th of March,
1872, will be remembered a long time to the citizens of Port Clinton and Sandusky as opening a new historical era.
At 2 o'clock in the afternoon a train consisting of the locomotive 'Vermilion', and a passenger coach left Port
Clinton for Sandusky. They came through with only a delay of about twenty minutes at the draw bridge and arrived
here shortly after four o'clock. Mr. A. W. Otis, engineer of the Vermillion informed the reporter that the track
was in splendid condition all the way, and that the new Bay Bridge is as firm as if it had been built for years.
Mr. Otis was the first engineer to drive a locomotive over the re-constructed bridge and feels very much elated
over the fact. Quite a number came over from Port Clinton on the train, among whom we noticed Mr. O. J. True, who
has superintended the rebuilding of the Bay Bridge. The train left again for Port Clinton about half past five
with banners flying."
On November 12, 1891, the first train over the Columbus Short Line left Sandusky, carrying about 400 Sanduskians
in eight passenger coaches to Bellevue. Among them was W. T. West, who asserted that he was the only man in the
crowd who went to Bellevue on the old Mad River Road on the first train in 1838. The Mad River Road from Sandusky
to Tiffin through Bellevue was abandoned in 1853. It was again put in use by the erection of the Columbus Short
Line, and was as solid and firm as when first constructed.
The road was absorbed by the Pennsylvania System October 24, 1902.
The Register of January 11, 1899, notes the destruction of the old Mad River freight house which had stood on the
dock at the foot of Lawrence Street for nearly fifty years. It was also used by the Lake Shore Railroad when it
ran trains along Water Street. Here was where George W. Paine began his railroad career as well as many other men
since prominent in the railroad world. The second floor was used for general offices of the Mad River Road and
when the C. S. & C. succeeded the Mad River and the I. B. & W. followed it was still the office building.
It had been abandoned but a few years before its destruction.
In December, 1892, the new Lake Store depot was finished.
The Lake Erie & Western Railway Company is now a part of the New York Central Railroad System.