The Rutland’s Uncertain Future

Many things have been written over the years in the RRHS magazine, The Newsliner, about the Rutland’s fortunes in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. The end-game of the Rutland was settled by the struggle between the operating unions and management, but there were other factors at work and this was known to some in management in the years prior to the end of the Rutland.

Newsliner Editor, Bruce Curry, wrote about one of these uncertainties in Volume 19, Number 4 of The Newsliner, an article entitled “Maine Central/Canadian Pacific Deal would have wounded the Rutland”. In it, Curry writes about the prospect that the CPR and MEC may have merged. This was something that had been proposed and discussed between the two railroads in November 1958. Had such a transaction occurred, it would have robbed the Rutland of considerable overhead traffic via the Norwood-Alburgh routing and connections to the MEC via the St. Johnsbury and Lamoille County and Central Vermont railways.

In a prior issue of The Newsliner (Volume 16, Number 4) Curry wrote an article called “The Rutland in 1959 – For Sale” which talks of efforts by Rutland President William Ginsburg to sell the Rutland to the New York Central and John Barringer III’s assessment of such a purchase. Barringer’s analysis to NYCRR’s Chair, Alfred Perlman was to not persue such a combination. In the end, what Barringer wrote was dead-on correct to what ailed the Rutland and led to it’s ultimate demise.

Both issues (still available to order as a back issue) sift much of the ashes of the “what-if’s” of the Rutland.


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