“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Ogdensburg in St. Lawrence County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Railroads Come To The North Country

Railroads Come To The North Country Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Steve Stoessel, July 7, 2020
1. Railroads Come To The North Country Marker
Railroads Come to the North Country
"Canadian lumber, livestock, silk, raw silk, silk goods, American coal, Oriental and merchandise provided much of the material transferred.” - Rails Across The River, By Ted Rafuse

Near this spot, tracks of the New York Central Railroad met a rail ferry connection with Prescott, Ontario and the Canadian National Railway creating an international market. This allowed North Country farmers to specialize in cows and buy their vegetables at a market.

North Country Travel: In 1850, Ogdensburg's first railroad line appeared just east of the St. Lawrence River where the tracks are still visible; the Northern Railroad connected Rouse's Point (on Lake Champlain) Malone, Norwood, and Ogdensburg allowing public access to Watertown, Rome, and New York City within a day's time. Eleven years later the RW&O (Rome, Watertown, Ogdensburg) line laid track from DeKalb Junction to its terminal in Ogdensburg.

Passenger Service: Later, as part of the New York Central main line, up to four passenger trains ran daily to Rome and later Syracuse. Passenger and freight
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stations (now the Freight House Restaurant) were located here. Freight cars accessed Canada via ferry to and from, Prescott. A second NYC line from Philadelphia, Redwood, and Morristown was added later and ran until the 1950's. The single, diesel railcar, "Beeliner" ran until 1964.

First Refrigerated Milk Train: The first refrigerated boxcar, or "reefer” entered service on the NRNY in June, 1851. An unnamed employee of this line was said to have invented the refrigerator car by double-walling a boxcar and insulating it with sawdust and ice. Later named the Rutland Railroad, this line ended service in 1963. The tracks remain, however and now operated as the New York & Ogdensburg; owned by the Ogdensburg Bridge & Port Authority and is operated by Vermont Railways.

Ogdensburg Agreement: On August 16, 1940, President Franklin D. Roosevelt came north to visit Pine Camp (Fort Drum) and to view the woefully small US Army during the time that Hitler's army was overrunning Europe. Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon MackKenzie arrived on the ferry to join Roosevelt aboard his official rail car at Heuvelton, NY; there the Ogdensburg Agreement, the plan for mutual defense between the United States and Canada was finalized.
Erected by Fort de la Présentation.
Topics and series. This historical marker is
View from Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Steve Stoessel
2. View from Marker
listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceRailroads & StreetcarsWar, World II. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #32 Franklin D. Roosevelt series list. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1851.
Location. 44° 41.838′ N, 75° 30.149′ W. Marker is in Ogdensburg, New York, in St. Lawrence County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Downtown Arterial Highway (New York State Route 68) and Albany Ave., on the left when traveling east. Marker is in Fort de la Presentation near the lighthouse. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Ogdensburg NY 13669, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. America’s Fourth Coast (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Fort de la Présentation (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fort la Présentation (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fort de la Présentation - 1749-1759 (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fort Lévis - 1760 (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fort Oswegatchie 1760-1796 (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Battle of Ogdensburg (approx. 0.2 miles away); Aka Se We':Ka Tsi (Oswegatchie) (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ogdensburg.
More about this marker.
Photo Captions (left to right):
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Railroad map courtesy of the Adirondack Experience
Canadian Prime Minister MacKenzie (left) with United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Refrigerated Boxcar
The single, diesel railcar, "Beeliner”
Credits. This page was last revised on July 31, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 20, 2020, by Steve Stoessel of Niskayuna, New York. This page has been viewed 158 times since then and 43 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on July 20, 2020, by Steve Stoessel of Niskayuna, New York. • Michael Herrick was the editor who published this page.
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Sep. 30, 2023