Carlisle in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The High Street Train Stations
Walking Tour Stop 18
For 99 years trains ran down the length of High Street. A cloud of smoke and the train's shrill whistle sent many a man and young boy to the station on High & Pitt streets to watch the passengers arrive and depart, especially when they were celebrities like General Tom Thumb and his wife.
Although the railroad brought prestige, prosperity and excitement to the residents of Carlisle, it also brought danger. Sparks from the engine's smokestack often set High Street roofs on fire; carts and wagons broke down on the tracks, and horses as well as people were often rescued just before the train pulled into town; and once, an enraged bull, who had escaped from a local butcher, charged the locomotive.
With the advent of the automobile, it became impractical to have as many as a dozen trains a day running down High Street at four miles per hour.
On October 16, 1936, the last train, a 15-coach special drawn by the PRR Co.'s newest streamlined locomotive, made its way east on High Street. Just as they had done 99 years before, throngs gathered to watch while bands played and speeches were made. “On both occasions there were scenes of rejoicing,” wrote a local historian.
Images courtesy of the Cumberland County Historical Society.
Erected by Historic Carlisle, Inc.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Notable Buildings • Railroads & Streetcars. A significant historical month for this entry is October 1921.
Location. 40° 12.108′ N, 77° 11.5′ W. Marker is in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, in Cumberland County. Marker is at the intersection of High Street (U.S. 11) and Pitt Street, on the right when traveling west on High Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Carlisle PA 17013, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. James Wilson (a few steps from this marker); Cumberland County Historical Society & Hamilton Library Association (within shouting distance of this marker); Centenary Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Thomas ButlerCarlisle's 250th Anniversary Mural (within shouting distance of this marker); Shell and Be Damned (within shouting distance of this marker); Prelude to Gettysburg (within shouting distance of this marker); The Carlisle Theatre (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Carlisle.
Also see . . .
1. Historic Carlisle, Inc. website... includes links to a walking tour through Carlisle Wayside markers. (Submitted on February 17, 2009.)
2. Historic Carlisle Inc. - recognizing and promoting the history of Carlisle, PA. (Submitted on February 27, 2009, by Alan Duxbury of Carlisle, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 12, 2020. It was originally submitted on February 13, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 1,109 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on February 13, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. 2. submitted on June 29, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 3, 4, 5. submitted on February 13, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. 6. submitted on June 12, 2020, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.