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Ohio Central System

Long-time steam locomotive aficionado, Jerry Jacobson, who was CEO and Chairman of the Board of the Ohio Central Railroad System (OCRS), decided to retire from the railroad industry. Effective as of October 1, 2008, Jerry sold his entire freight railroad interest in OCRS to Genesee & Wyoming, Inc. Included in that transfer were the ten, separate and individual railroads that comprised the greater OCRS, all track, property, modern diesel locomotives, freight cars, the Morgan Run Shop, and all other depots and structures. The control and day-to-day operation of OCRS leased railroads -- for example, the ex-PRR Panhandle Line which is still owned by the State of Ohio and the Mt. Vernon-Newark-Zanesville-Cambridge line which is still owned by CSX Transportation -- were assigned to G&W with the permission of the owners of these leased lines. Based on OCRS's low operating ratio, yearly growth and continuing profitability, it had become a prime candidate for a friendly takeover by a larger railroad. Negotiations were held with several railroads, but G&W got the nod to add the 525-mile OCRS to its list of 53 other short line railroads. However, Jerry retained ownership of all ten of his beloved steam locomotives, 22 old diesels, twelve heavyweight and twelve lightweight passenger cars, and the depot at Sugar Creek.

Age of Steam Roundhouse

The Ohio Central Railroad System is a network of shortline railroads operating in Ohio and western Pennsylvania. Headquartered in Coshocton, Ohio, the system operates 500 miles of track divided among 10 subsidiary railroads. Most of the system's routes were divested from Class I railroads and connect industries to CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern, and other regionals. Ohio subsidiaries include the Ohio Central (distinct from the collective system), the Columbus & Ohio River, Youngstown Belt, Warren & Trumbell, and the Youngstown & Austintown. The OHCR system was purchased by the Genessee & Wyoming shortline operator in 2008.

Ohio Central system map / web

See also our Pittsburgh & Ohio Central and Youngstown & Austintown collections
See also our Age of Steam Roundhouse collection

Links / Sources

This page was updated on 2016-04-24