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Remember When...

March 23, 2012
By BETTY POKAS - Times Leader Area Editor , Times Leader

TRAINS don't chug down the railroad tracks as much as they used to, and sometimes, the tracks themselves are gone.

These photos, provided by Ethel Richardson, were gathered by her late husband Robert H. Richardson, who wrote "Tilton Territory" and "A Time and Place in Ohio."

What is called the first commercial railroad in the United States dates from the 1820s, but a decline occurred in the 1950s and '60s because of the popularity of automobiles, trucks and airplanes.

Article Photos

TRAVEL by rail wasn’t always smooth as shown by this wreck on the Steubenville-Brilliant line. The accident at Brilliant occurred Dec. 9, 1911, at 11 p.m.

Removed also for the most part were the depots or railroad stations in Eastern Ohio.

Even a place as small as Rush Run in Jefferson County had a depot.

Richardson in "A Time and Place in Ohio" mentioned an early settler in that area - James Maxwell who built a cabin near Rush Run in 1772. Maxwell, a cousin to Ebenezer Zane, had fled to this area to avoid prosecution for a murder of which he later was proven innocent.

Maxwell lived in the area for two years but returned to Virginia because of the increasing threat of American Indian uprisings. He returned to Rush Run in 1780 with his young wife, Sally.

His name, however, wasn't used for that area or the depot; it bears the name of David Rush who settled in that area in 1798, according to Richardson's book.

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