Conestoga in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Moving Heaven and Earth
The Atglen & Susquehanna in Manor Township
In 1877, the Columbia and Port Deposit Railroad (C&PD), under the control of the PRR, completed its route into Columbia, PA from the south (lower left images). Hosting passenger and freight services, the primarily single-track line slowly
Work to create two new rail shelves extended from 1903-1906 with one of the PRR's most experienced contractors — H. S. Kerbaugh Co — coordinating the massive efforts along the Susquehanna. At times, as many as 3,000 laborers were engaged in a relentless cycle of drilling and blasting. A mix of rock and loam was dislodged from the cliffs and graded into the water's edge. The arduous process relied on human agility to scale the unstable slopes by staked rope line and to level a perch sufficient for the vertical well drills. Near the bottom of the vertical holes (up to 133 feet deep), horizontal holes (up to 35 feet deep) were drilled by tripod-mounted rock drills. Holes were sprung by a charge of dynamite, loaded with blasting powder, then simultaneously
Two new shelves slowly emerged on the east bank of the river. Their distinct elevations are most clearly appreciated as their flanking spans cross the mouth of the Conestoga River on the Safe Harbor Bridge (lower right image). North of Manor Township, the A&S crossed the Susquehanna River on the PRR's Shocks Mill Bridge at Marietta, then on to the Enola Classification Yard west of Harrisburg. From near Washington Boro to Atglen, PA (Chester County) there were no grade crossings on the A&S. In 1941, this superhighway of rail carried a daily average of 29 eastbound freights (2,424 cars) and 23 westbound freights (2,224 cars). The Atglen and Susquehanna Lou Grade was one of the largest civil engineering projects Lancaster County has ever seen.
Erected by Amtrak.
Location. 39° 57.862′ N, 76° 27.349′ W. Marker is in Conestoga, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County. Marker can be reached from River Road half a mile south of Anchor Road, on the right when traveling south. Marker is located at the south end of the Turkey Hill Trail Nature Preserve parking lot, at the trailhead Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Conestoga PA 17516, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Atglen & Susquehanna Low Grade (here, next to this marker); Great Minqua Path (approx. 0.9 miles away); Susquehanna Canal (approx. 1.8 miles away); Susquehanna and Tidewater Canal (approx. 1.8 miles away); Washington Boro Archaeological Sites (approx. 2 miles away); Cresap's Fort (approx. 2.1 miles away); Captain Thomas Cresap (approx. 2.1 miles away); Martin Chartier (approx. 2½ miles away).
More about this marker. This is a large, "billboard-style" marker, mounted on the south-facing side of the trailhead kiosk for the Enola Low Grade Rail Trail.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. The Atglen & Susquehanna Low Grade
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Credits. This page was last revised on February 4, 2019. This page originally submitted on August 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 80 times since then and 39 times this year. Last updated on February 2, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on August 29, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 6, 7, 8. submitted on September 5, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 9, 10, 11. submitted on October 30, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 12. submitted on August 29, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.