Originally using horse power to pull the cars, the line was electrified in 1897. Steam engines were used during construction of new track, but in regular operations motive power was strictly electric. the Southern New York did carry quite a bit of freight, and in addition to trolleys, there were several electric locomotives used over the years. When the north end of the line was abandoned in 1940, the line converted over to steam and diesel power. At least two climax locomotives were used for switching duties in Oneonta, one of which (SNY #44) is still in existance in at the Corry Historical Museum in Corry, PA.
Original colors on the line were dark greens and possibly reds. In 1924 the interurban cars were repainted orange for safety reasons, as automobiles were becoming prevalent (and consequently, accidents with those automobiles!) A local resident that lived north of Index, NY related seeing the interurban cars in 1936-39 and commented that they were painted a faded orange-ish-yellow color (the O&MV had been in serious financial problems since the late 1920's, and indeed was only a few years from abandonment of most of the line. There was very little money for equipment maintenance, and so it would be reasonable that this would represent old and faded paint.).
Car 63 outside the carbarn at Hartwick.
Car 3 on Main Street in Cooperstown.
In Otsego County, winter snows could be heavy and frequent. With sub-zero temperatures lasting for weeks, 10 to 20 foot drifts along the line were not uncommon. Plows were essential to operation of the railroad.
A rotary plow in operation.
Tauton engine #1, equipped with a plow, approaching Schuyler Lake station.
In addition to trolley cars, the SNY also operated a number of electric locomotives for freight service. Here is #100 along the line.
Trolley along a rural highway.
The parlor car "Otsego". For a premium, passengers could travel in luxury in this especially appointed car.
The "Otsego" on a trestle up near Mohawk.
Another view of #19.
Another view of #62.
Open car #13 in Cooperstown.
Open car #12.
A lot of the SNY right of way was through farmland. Most local railroads were dotted with crossings like these, so that farmers could move livestock from one side of the tracks to the other without crossing over the tracks.
The right of way of the SNY was not always practical, but could be quite beautiful. This trolley is on its way to Hartwick from Index.
A trolley moves along Main Street in Oneonta.
In later years, the Southern New York operated as a short line in Oneonta, switching freight over 2 miles of track, interchanging with the D&H. This photo was taken in 1951. #44 was acquired from the Grasse River. She would later be replaced by a pair of GE diesels. #44 is now on display in Corry, PA. Corry was the home to the Climax Locomotive Works.
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