Tell Tale Extra

 

  Trainmaster Cochran Advises . . .

 

 



The Northern Pacific Railway follows the course of Washington's Yakima River just north of Selah. The route is Puget Sound's primary rail connection with the East, running 136.6 miles from Auburn to Yakima via Stampede Pass. This is the Tacoma Division's First Sub-Division, opened through Stampede Tunnel in 1888.



The Tacoma Division

First Sub-Division
Yakima-Auburn 139 miles. The First is generally referred to as the Mountain.

Second Sub-Division
Tacoma-Seattle 40 miles.
Joint account with Great Northern Railway ex-Puget Sound Shore and Northern Pacific.

Third Sub-Division
Tacoma-Portland 146.3 miles.
Joint account with Great Northern Railway and Union Pacific Railroad post-World War Two, the Third and branches from it are generally referred to as the South End, the double-track segment from Tacoma to Tenino was built circa 1912 and is referred to as the ''Point Line'' and replaced the ''Prairie Line.'' According to WSU Press author John Gaertner, all eastbound traffic collected on the NP south of Centralia, WA, including branches from Centralia, was routed via the Spokane Portland and Seattle Railway along the Columbia River.

Fourth Sub-Division
Prairie Line
Tacoma-Tenino Jct 39.2 miles.
Joint account with Great Northern Railway and Union Pacific Railroad pre-World War Two. Original route Kalama-Tenino-Tacoma completed circa 1873. Referred to as ''Tenino Cut-Off'' by GN crews. Joins Third at both points.

Fifth Sub-Division
Sumas Branch
Seattle-BC, Canada 128.2 miles.
The Fifth and branches from it are generally referred to as the North End.

Sixth Sub-Division
Roslyn Branch
Cle Elum-Ronald 5.4 miles.
Joins First at Cle Elum.

Seventh Sub-Division
Buckley Line and Wilkeson Branch
Tacoma-Kanaskat [listed] 44.3 miles.
Joins Second at Meeker and First at Kanaskat Jct. 34.7 miles; also includes Wilkeson Branch,Cascade Jct. to Carbonado, 8.5 miles, joins Seventh at Cascade Jct.

Eighth Sub-Division
Green River Branch
Kanaskat-Selleck 3.9 miles.
Joins First at Kanaskat, ex-Green River and Northern.

Tenth Sub-Division
Orting Branch
Orting-Lake Kapowsin 10 miles.
Joins Seventh at Orting.

Eleventh Sub-Division
Belt Line, Lake Washington Belt Line
Woodinville-Black River 24.5 miles.
Joins Second at Black River, portion is ex-Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern. BNSF now uses Pacific Coast trackage from Black River to Renton.

Twelfth Sub-Division
Snoqualmie Branch
Woodinville-Milwaukee Road crossing North Bend area 38 miles.
Joins Eleventh at Woodinville, ex-Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern.

Thirteenth Sub-Division
Hartford Line
Bromart-Edgecomb 19.9 miles. Joins Fifth at Bromart, ex-Hartford and Eastern.

Fourteenth Sub-Division
Darrington Branch
Arlington-Darrington 27.7 miles.
Joins Fifth at Arlington Jct.

Fifteenth Sub-Division
Bellingham Branch
Wickersham-Bellingham 20.4 miles.
Joins Fifth at Wickersham, ex-Bellingham Bay and Eastern.

Sixteenth Sub-Division
Grays Harbor Line
St. Clair-Moclips 100.5 miles.
Joins Third at St. Clair, ex-United Railroads of Washington.

Seventeenth Sub-Division
American Lake Line
Lakeview-Nisqually 11.7 miles.
Joins Fourth at Lakeview and Third at Nisqually, serves US Army installation at Fort Lewis.

Eighteenth Sub-Division
Gate Line
Centralia-Gate 13.8 miles.
Joins Third at Centralia and Sixteenth at Gate.

Nineteenth Sub-Division
Elma Branch
Elma-Bangor 68.5 miles.
Joins Sixteenth at Elma, serves US Navy installations including Puget Sound Naval Shipyard at Bremerton and Submarine Base Bangor.

Twentieth Sub-Division
Ocosta Branch
Aberdeen-Markham 13.1. miles.
Joins Sixteenth at Aberdeen Jct.

Twenty-First Sub-Division
Willapa Harbor Line
Chehalis-South Bend 56.5. miles.
Joins Third at Chehalis Jct., ex-United Railroads of Washington.

Twenty-Second Sub-Division
Yacolt Branch
Rye Jct.-Yacolt 27.2 miles [approximately].
Joins Third at Rye Jct.

Twenty-Third Sub-Division
Moxee Branch
Yakima-Moxee City 8.6 miles.
Joins First at Yakima.

Twenty-Fourth Sub-Division
Naches and Tieton Branches
Yakima-Naches 13.5 miles.
Joins First at Yakima, also includes Tieton Branch, Brace-Tieton 11.6 miles, joins Twenty-Fourth at Brace, ex-North Yakima and Valley.

See also The Northern Pacific in Washington.



Dramatis Personae
ABJ -- Allen B. Johnson, Assistant General Superintendent of Transportation, Seattle, Washington.

CHM -- Charles H. Moreau, Master Mechanic, Seattle, Washington.

DHS -- Douglas H. 'Doug' Shoemaker, Chief Engineer, St. Paul, Minnesota.

DTN -- Double Track North dispatching territory; Tacoma, Wash., to British Columbia, Canada.

DTS -- Double Track South dispatching territory; Tacoma, Wash., to Portland, Oregon.

EMO -- Edward M. Overlie, Trainmaster, Tacoma, Washington.

ESU -- E.S. Ulyatt, General Superintendent of Transportation, St. Paul, Minnesota.

FAM -- F.A. Mackenroth, Superintendent of Communications, Seattle, Washington.

FLS -- F. Lynn Steinbright, Vice President, Operating Department, St. Paul, Minnesota.

FWC -- Francis W. 'Frank' Cochran, Trainmaster, Yakima, Washington.

GAS -- Glen A. Staeheli, Road Foreman of Engines, Auburn, Washington.

GET -- G.E. 'Gene' Trenary, Trainmaster, Auburn, Washington.

HCW -- Herbert C. 'Herb' Weimer, Supervisor, Bridges and Buildings, Tacoma, Washington.

IWB -- Ira W. Brewer, Superintendent, Tacoma, Washington.

JAC -- Jess A. Cannon, Chief Mechanical Officer, St. Paul, Minnesota.

JHH -- John H. Hertog, Assistant Superintendent, Tacoma, Washington.

JRM -- Jerry R. Masters, Division Engineer, Seattle, Washington.

LLG -- L.L. George, Seattle Engineering Office, Seattle, Washington.

LLN -- Lee L. Norquist, Roadmaster, Tacoma, Washington [from Roadmaster, Auburn, Washington].

LWD -- L.W. Dreis, Car Accountant, St. Paul, Minnesota.

MGT -- Melvin G. 'Mel' Thomson, Division Roadmaster, Tacoma, Washington.

MTN -- Mountain dispatching territory; Auburn, Wash., to Yakima, Washington.

NML -- Norman M. Lorentzsen, General Manager, Lines West of Livingston, Mont., Seattle, Washington.

PAW -- P.A. Williams, Roadmaster, Centralia, Washington.

RAR -- Robert A. 'Bob' Robey, Roadmaster, Auburn, Washington.

RGB -- Richard G. 'Dick' Brohaugh, District Engineer, Livingston West and Camas Prairie Railroad, Seattle, Washington.

WEB -- William E. 'Bill' Buckley, Assistant Superintendent, Seattle, Washington.



At 5:15 A.M. Trainmaster Cochran advises west span of Bridge 1.1 over Yakima River dropped into river . . .

January 29, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LWD - St. Paul
ABJ NML JEM JRM RGB LLG WEB CHH LLN CWK FAM - Seattle
FWC - Yakima Depot
GET GAS AAJ RAR - Auburn Yard
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW LFW DTN DTS MTN
[At] 8 A.M. situation Tacoma Division.
Heavy rains on division last 48 hours. Weather:
Yakima -- Cloudy, intermittent rain, forty-one above, seven inches old snow.
Easton -- Heavy rain, calm, thirty-seven above, thirty-eight inches old snow.
Lester -- Intermittent rain, calm, forty above, ten inches old snow.
On Naches Branch log jam against Bridge 4 and water running over bridge. NYV Local with Pile Driver 30 en route.
Tieton Branch out of service between Brace and Weikel account high water and inspection will be made after daylight.
At 6 P.M. January 28 had report that creek bed between highway bridge and Bridge 1 at west end of Ellensburg Yard was blocked with snow and ice, causing water to back up level with ties. At 1:30 A.M. water had receded six inches and has continued to recede.
At 6 A.M. Extra 7005A West reports high water at Bridge 2 west of Ellensburg. Section foreman called at 7:30 A.M. reports water stable, not washing, and no immediate threat at that point.
At Kountze small rock slide at west end of siding which section crew will clear.
Between Nelson and Cle Elum trains have been instructed to run at restricted speeds in cut between Mile Post 27 and 28 account small slides and rolling rock.
Between Nelson and Easton water has backed up from highway bridge, causing water to run parallel to main track between Mile Post 35.5 and Mile Post 36.5, twenty mile per hour slow order in effect and Mr. Robey watching.
At 3:30 A.M. Extra 5405A West reported slide alongside track and high water about six feet from track just west of west switch at Maywood. Section foreman Lester en route.
Between Eagle Gorge and Kanaskat culvert 282 feet west of Mile Post 79 blocked with logs and debris and water now about twelve feet below ties. Have one six-inch pump working steady but water is raising about one foot an hour and have located two five-inch pumps which should be available at scene about 10 A.M. Work train with Shovel 62 en route.
Extra 5405A West at 5:45 A.M. reported struck slide at east switch Palmer Junction.
Work train with Shovel 62 leaving Kanaskat 8:15 A.M., will clear this slide first en route to culvert Mile Post 79.
At 5:30 A.M. Enumclaw Local advised by radio water very high behind dike at Mile Post 4 on Lake Kapowsin Branch and Mr. [George P.] Hoffman [roadmaster] en route to inspect.
At 6:30 A.M. Auburn-Everett Time Freight reported struck slide 2,000 feet east of Mile Post 35 about 50 feet long and up to one foot deep. Section foreman Maltby en route to clear.
At 8 P.M. January 28 agent Arlington advised culvert under wye was blocked and water backing up and B&B crews were dispatched to clear.
At 2:40 A.M. date Darrington Local advised by radio were behind a slide at Mile Post 1 on Darrington Branch which was forty feet long and four feet deep. Train backed up to Cicero and trainmaster picked up crews and handled by auto to Arlington. Section crews at Snohomish, Arlington, Rowan and Montbourne en route first thing this A.M. to clear and expect to have cleared about 1 P.M.
[At] 7 P.M. January 28 had reports trees across track between Mile Post 74 and 75 between McMurray and Montbourne and also two slides, one just west of Mile Post 73 which was thirty feet long and two feet deep and another between Mile Post 74 and 75 thirty feet long and two-and-a-half feet deep. Section crews have cleared.
Number 676 January 28 advised ran into a small slide 300 feet east of Mile Post 85 between Sedro-Woolley and Thornwood and water running across track at this location. Section foreman Sedro-Woolley is clearing this morning.
At 6:10 P.M. January 28 Bellingham-Everett Time Freight advised slide across Bellingham Branch between Park and Agate Bay at Mile Post 6 which was sixty feet long and six feet deep. This is being cleared this morning with Crane 68. Bellingham-Everett Time Freight and Everett-Bellingham Time Freight last night were detoured over Great Northern between Sedro-Woolley and Bellingham.
Southern Pacific advises their main line is washed out at Millersburg between Portland and Eugene. Freight business is being detoured over their West Side Branch. Passenger trains are terminating at Eugene and bussing between Eugene and Portland. Their Tillicum Branch, Toledo Line, and Coos Bay Line all out of service.
CD 1013 IWB 9:30 A.M.


January 29, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LWD - St. Paul
ABJ NML JEM JRM RGB LLG WEB CHH LLN CWK FAM - Seattle
PAW - Centralia
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW LFW DTN DTS MTN
My CD 1030 regarding slides and high water on Tacoma Division.
Slide covering westward track 800 feet west of Mile Post 12 on Third Sub between Titlow and Steilacoom cleared at 7:40 P.M.
At 4:25 P.M. slide reporter about three-quarters of a mile west of Preston on Twelfth Sub about four feet deep and twenty feet long consisting of trees, stumps and mud. Section men now working at this location.
Regarding slides and high water on Tieton Branch following reported by track supervisor:
Bridge 0.2 now OK.
Bridge 0.3 east end bulkhead bent washed out.
Between Bridge 0.3 and Bridge 0.4 about 600 feet of track washed out.
West end of Bridge 0.4 400 feet of track washed out.
East end of Bridge 0.4 600 feet of track washed out.
Bridge 1 needs riprap on east bulkhead.
Bridge 1.1 needs riprap on west end of bulkhead.
Between Mile Post 2 and Bridge 2 300 feet needs riprap.
Bridge 1.2. needs riprap.
Weikel and east:
Between 200 feet west of Bridge 3.2 and Bridge 3.3 500 feet of track washed out and large rock slide.
Bridge 3.2 one bent and bulkhead washed out.
Bridge 3.1 west end of lien and 80 feet of track washed out.
East of Bridge 3.2 450 feet of track washed out and curve east of Bridge 3.2 was out a distance of about 175 feet.
CA 869 IWB 10:27 P.M.
EMO: Kristfelt estimates will require about 50 flat cars of riprap and 35 to 40 cars of gravel.


January 30, 1965
RAR - Auburn Yard
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW DTN DTS MTN CGS
[At] 8:50 A.M. date [Section Foreman Rocco] Tenerelli reports plugged culvert 1,500 feet west of Mile Post 76 between Eagle Gorge and Kanaskat now OK and slow order can be removed.
CF 265 IWB 10:39 A.M.


January 30, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LWD - St. Paul
ABJ NML JEM JRM RGB LLG WEB CHH LLN CWK FAM - Seattle
PAW - Centralia
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW LFW DTN DTS MTN
CD 1030 CA 869 regarding slides and high water on Tacoma Division.
Tieton and Moxee and Wilkeson Branches remain out of service. Remainder Tacoma Division in service with most critical points as follows:
Fist Sub Mile Post 79 between Lemolo and Kanaskat -- blocked culvert being cleared of water by use of pumps and when cleared of water culvert will be cleared of the obstruction.
Fifth Sub -- Bridge 55 endangered by wash which being diverted by riprap being placed by work train.
Seventh Sub -- Bridge 11 also endangered by wash and protected by riprap now in process being dumped by Enumclaw Local.
CF 291 IWB 1:52 P.M.


January 30, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LWD - St. Paul
ABJ NML JEM JRM RGB LLG WEB CHH LLN CWK FAM - Seattle
PAW - Centralia
RAR - Auburn Yard
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW LFW DTN DTS MTN
Various files re slides and high water on Tacoma Division.
My CF 308 at 4:40 P.M. Mr. [C.W.] Kick reports hole on end of bulkhead Bridge 7.1 (instead of Bridge 7) about four feet deep and four feet square and bridge not in immediate danger, expect to fill in A.M. This on Twelfth Sub.
At 5:30 P.M. section foreman East Olympia reports no change in Nisqually River.
At 6 P.M. roadmaster reports Yakima River expected to stay at same level until about 8 A.M. January 31, then recede around Moxee, but Bridge 1.1 is in extreme danger of failing.
At 9:20 P.M. watchman called from Stampede to report Cabin Creek up about one foot in thee hours but no danger. [At] 7:20 P.M. B&B foreman at Mile Post 79 First Sub reported had four pumps going and water dropping, same report received again at 11:40 P.M.
At 7:30 P.M. section foreman between Gate and Aberdeen Sixteenth Sub, water in creek up to sills of Bridge 49.1, and Chehalis River high at Porter near Mile Post 41, but water not running fast and does not expect trouble.
[At] 9:35 P.M. section foreman reported Snohomish River over banks between Mile Post 35 and Mile Post 37 Fifth Sub between Maltby and Bromart, but roadbed at this location on fill and not in immediate danger.
[At] 8 P.M. Bridge 55 on Fifth Sub reported OK for ten miles per hour, log jam reported against Bridge 44 one mile west of Machias, cleared by work train on way to Auburn Yard.
[At] 9:50 P.M. telegrapher Ellensburg reported six inches of water in basement of passenger station and about two feet of water surrounding station but is surface water and will slowly run off as ice and snow melts in sewer grates.
Work extra unloading rock and ballast Bridge 11 on Seventh Sub, expect to have bridge in service about 12:30 A.M. January 31.
CA 897 IWB 11:59 P.M.


January 31, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LDW - St. Paul
ABJ NML JCH JRM RGB LLG WEB - Seattle
CHM LLM CWK FAM - Seattle
RAR - Auburn Yard
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW MTN
Various files regarding slides and high water on Tacoma Division. At 5:15 A.M. Trainmaster Cochran advises west span of Bridge 1.1 over Yakima River between Yakima and Terrace Heights dropped into river.
At 7 A.M. B&B foreman at Mile Post 79 reports water dropping and is now about twenty feet below ties. Have not yet reached culvert.
Regarding slip out at Bridge 11 on Seventh Sub. Work train dumped ten air dumps, four battleships, and five flats rock and also cribbed under slip out. Bridge back in service at 12:30 A.M. and good for five miles per hour. Will run work train Monday for further work on this bridge.
CN 746 IWB 7:48 A.M.


January 31, 1965
FLS ESU JAC DHS LDW - St. Paul
ABJ NML JCH JRM RGB LLG WEB - Seattle
CHM LLM CWK FAM - Seattle
RAR - Auburn Yard
IWB JHH EMO MGT HCW MTN
Three P.M. various files regarding slides and high water Tacoma Division.
Tieton and Moxee branches remain out of service as previously reported.
All other sub-divisions in operation except small portion of Fifth between Lake and Bothell as reported below.
Weather has changed for the better and water receding or remaining at previous levels over entire division -- with exception of Columbia River -- last reading 7.3 feet at Kalama at A.M. A rise of .3 feet since 4 P.M. Saturday. Indicates a fall in the rate of rise.
First Sub at Mile Post 79 between Kanaskat and Lemolo -- Work continuing on clearing blocked culvert.
First Sub Mile Post 76 plus 3147 feet between Lemolo and Eagle Gorge has been cleared of obstructing flow of water -- track not obstructed.
Fifth Sub between Mile Post 17 and Mile Post 18 Lake and Bothell obstructed by small slide which will be cleared Monday A.M.
Fifth Sub Mile Post 35 and Mile Post 38 Maltby and GN Snohomish -- water reported going over dike -- but dies are holding and track being watched -- no damage or wash to this hour.
Fifth Sub between Lowell and Everett covered with water from time to time as tide comes in. Necessary January 30 to operate Everett-Auburn Time Freight West and East via GN Sea Line between above points.
Twelfth Sub Bridge 7.1 between Redmond and Issaquah has had ballast placed against east bulkhead diverting water which was threatening at that point.
CF 336 IWB 2:43 P.M.



Telegrams courtesy J.M. FREDRICKSON.



Updated March 13, 2006.
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