Camden, New York: No More Railroad!

In New York State, a significant portion of the trackage north of the New York Central main line was once part of the Rome Watertown & Ogdensburgh. At one point it had 643 route miles. The Watertown & Rome was chartered in 1832 to connect northern New York with the Erie Canal, but it took 17 years before ground was broken near Rome. The territory between Rome & Watertown was and is sparsely populated and difficult to build a rail line through. However, upon approaching Watertown the territory changes. It is somewhat more populated and easier to penetrate. Furthermore, it is close to the busy St. Lawrence River. Midway between Rome and Watertown was the once-important depot at Camden. Rome (Signal Station 34) to Richland (45 miles). This was cut back to Camden by 1961. 22 miles from Richland to Camden was abandoned in 1957. Camden to Rome was abandoned in stages from 1977 to 1983.Camden to Rome survived until CONRAIL. A Utica to Massena passenger ran over this route in 1956. Now Camden has no railroad. The Elmira, Cortland & Northern (later part of the Lehigh Valley) had extended from Canastota to Camden in 1887. Camden was on the Rome to Watertown section of the RW&O. With aid from some Watertown businessmen, Austin Corbin of the EC&N chartered the Camden, Watertown & Northern. Although some construction was started, it never really had a chance and just died. Later on, the Canastota to Camden line was abandoned. Now Camden has no railroad.