TS21: A Fabulous “Fallen Flag”
Written by: Gary Dolzall.
Now available, the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack recalls one of America’s most memorable Fallen Flag railroads!
“Fallen Flags.” To railroad enthusiasts the phase recalls the many captivating and memorable railroads of the past. Among America’s fallen flags, the Western Maryland Railway stands memorable and tall. And now, with the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack, you’ll experience all the classic and captivating appeal of this famed American railroad!
Created for the acclaimed Train Simulator CSX Hanover Subdivision route, the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack includes everything you need to step back in time to the late 1960s and early 1970s and go to work for the railroad known as “The Fast Freight Line.”
In stretching from Baltimore, Maryland westward to Connellsville, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia coal country, the Western Maryland was big and busy enough to be pulsing with action, yet small enough to be comfortably familiar. For the train-watcher, Western Maryland was at once a tough, traditional Allegheny coal hauler and a spiffy bridge route that hustled freight tonnage on its “Alpha Jets.”
Born by charter of the Maryland General Assembly on May 27, 1852, the Western Maryland would serve its region well for a century-and-a-quarter before being integrated into the Chessie System (a combination of the Chesapeake & Ohio, Baltimore & Ohio, and WM) in 1973 and fully merged in 1983. The relationship between Western Maryland and Baltimore & Ohio was, in fact, long-lived. As early as the 1920s, B&O held a major ownership stake in the WM, and B&O influence continued across the decades.
The Western Maryland, during its long life was marvelous to behold, whether during the steam era when WM’s magnificent Baldwin-built M2 4-6-6-4s and burly I2 2-10-0s made any trip to trackside memorable, or during its diesel years when first Electro-Motive, Alco, and Baldwin diesels provided the motive power, then second-generation EMDs came calling.
For the Western Maryland, everything east of the railroad’s headquarters and bustling shop town of Hagerstown was informally “the East End.” Northeast from Hagerstown, the Lurgan Subdivision extended to Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, and a connecting with the Reading, while the Eastern Subdivision stretched eastward to Baltimore, via Highfield, Thurmont, and Emory Grove. The Western Maryland’s Hanover Subdivision provided a second important route between Highfield and Emory Grove and a connect with the railroad’s Porters Junction-York (Pennsylvania) York Subdivision. The WM’s Hanover Subdivision hosted connections and interchanges with the Reading at Gettysburg and the Pennsylvania Railroad at Hanover.
Today, the Hagerstown – Highfield – Porters – Emory Grove - Baltimore portion of the old Western Maryland is operated by Chessie successor CSX as its Hanover Subdivision; the ex-WM Eastern Subdivision between Highfield and Emory Grove is operated by the Maryland Midland, and the ex-WM York Subdivision is operated by York Railway. Train Simulator’s recently released CSX Hanover Subdivision route includes the ex-Western Maryland line from Hagerstown to Porters, Pennsylvania (east of Hanover), and wonderfully replicates 62 route miles through scenic and historic “Pennsylvania Dutch” farmland and across rugged South Mountain and the Blue Ridge!
The new Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack features three types of Western Maryland diesel locomotives – the Electro-Motive F7, GP9, and GP35 – along with the railroad’s steel C-13A cupola caboose, and ten era-authentic types of freight equipment. And the retro pack includes a selection of ten career scenarios based on Western Maryland operations and train symbols that use “Form 19” train orders to add authenticity to the experience.
Note: The locomotives and freight equipment included in the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack can be used on a variety of Train Simulator routes; use of the included scenarios requires the CSX Hanover Subdivision route.
Tackle main line freight, local, and switching duties and experience fallen flag railroading amid the historic farmlands and scenic mountains of Maryland and Pennsylvania, with the new Train Simulator Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack, available now at the Steam and Dovetail Games stores! – Gary Dolzall
Available now, the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack includes everything you need to step back in time and go to work for the famed “Fallen Flag” railroad known as “The Fast Freight Line.” At Highfield, Maryland, summit of the Hanover Subdivision, east- and westbound Western Maryland freights meet. Screenshots by Gary Dolzall.
Created for the acclaimed Train Simulator CSX Hanover Subdivision route, the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack features three types of Western Maryland diesel locomotives – the Electro-Motive GP9, F7, and GP35. Wearing Western Maryland’s traditional black and gold “Speed Lettering” livery, a duo of WM EMD GP9s are switching at Porters, Pennsylvania (above), while at snowy Hanover, Pennsylvania, WM Geep 33 tends to switching duty. Note: Screenshots depict content in development.
Joining the classic GP9 in the Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack is the famed Electro-Motive F7, which is provided in WM’s traditional black and gold livery and its striking “Circus Color” scheme. With an “Alpha Jet” freight in tow, WM F7A 60 is descending the west slope of South Mountain at Pen-Mar (above) and then crosses Raven Rock Trestle (below).
Framed between trees aglow in brilliant Autumn colors, a pair of Western Maryland GP9s are headed eastbound from historic Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The Western Maryland purchased 21 Electro-Motive GP9s between 1950 and 1957.
Between 1950 and 1953, Western Maryland acquired EMD F7s as the railroad dieselized its operations and the stylish cab units proved long-lived. Wearing WM’s flashy “Circus Colors” livery introduced in the 1960s, Western Maryland F7A 55 is leading Train YH-1 through snowy Orrtanna, Pennsylvania (above), while sister WM 53 handles an eastbound stone at Hanover (below). WM’s final F-units remained in service until November 1979.
Second-generation diesels arrived on the Western Maryland in 1963 in the form of EMD’s GP35s. Working the challenging roller-coaster profile of the Hanover Subdivision (above), a trio of the 2,500-horsepower Electro-Motive diesels are totting coal eastward through scenic Maryland farmland near Chewsville (below).
Tackle main line freight, local, and switching duties and experience fallen flag railroading amid the historic farmlands and scenic mountains of Maryland and Pennsylvania, with the new Train Simulator Western Maryland Railway Retro Pack, available now at the Steam and Dovetail Games stores!
Screenshots and images displayed in this article may depict content that is still in development. The licensed brands may not have been approved by their respective owner and some artwork may still be pending approval.
TS21: A Fabulous “Fallen Flag”