Pennsylvania Railroad Signals on the Main Line.

A descriptive sequence of photos at Bryn Mawr.

Pennsylvania Railroad’s chief signal engineer A.H. Rudd developed the position light signal during the World War I years and the railroad refined the type into its classic form in the 1920s. There after, the railroad installed large numbers of this unusual type of signal along its lines.

While in recent years this type of hardware has fallen out of favor, or been adapted into a form of colored position light, there are a few places where classic PRR-style position lights survive.

The former Pennsylvania Railroad Main Line west of Philadelphia is one of the last bastions for these traditional signals.

In December, Pat Yough and I spent several evenings photographing the old PRR position lights at work.

Pennsylvania Railroad Position Light signal at Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. Time exposure made with a Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens mounted firmly on a Bogen tripod. ISO400 f4 at 3.2 seconds.
Pennsylvania Railroad Position Light signal at Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. Time exposure made with a Canon EOS 7D 100mm lens mounted firmly on a Bogen tripod. ISO400 f4 at 3.2 seconds.

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Approach.
Approach.
Proceed.
Proceed.

I made this sequence of images near the now-closed tower at Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. Interested in learning more about signals? My book, Railroad Signaling is available from Voyageur Press. My new book, Classic Railroad Signals is anticipated for publication later this year.

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