Tanks on the old Erie Railroad; Canisteo Valley New York 1987.


In March 1987, I made a trip to the scenic Canisteo Valley where I photographed trains on the former Erie Railroad.

I made this view at the Canisteo River Road crossing at West Cameron, New York of DODX 6-axle flats carrying tanks. This was an eastward Conrail BUOI (Buffalo to Oak Island) freight and it was rolling along at a healthy speed.

At the time, I was experimenting with my black & white process. Unfortunately, I should have experimented with film of subjects that wouldn’t have been so interesting to me 30 years after the fact.

This roll of 120 film has been largely unseen since the 1980s. My ineffective trial yielded uneven processing and negatives that were difficult to print with poor tonality.

Today, I think the subject matter is fascinating despite the inept process.

The irony was that I was adapting a formula recommended to me by former New York Central photographer Ed Nowak. The lesson here is don’t allow a New York Central photographer advise you on how to process photos of the Erie Railroad! (Railroad photography humor).

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4 thoughts on “Tanks on the old Erie Railroad; Canisteo Valley New York 1987.”

  1. Hi Brian, Earlier this week I was at Travel Town, near L.A. When there I picked up a copy of your book about signals. I cannot wait to dig into it. Keep up the fine work. Oh and BTW, I dig this pic as well!
    RR Mike of Poughkeepsie

    1. Hi Mike,
      I hope you enjoy the book!
      I’ve done two signaling books now; the original ‘Railroad Signaling’ and the more recently published ‘Classic Railroad Signals’.
      All the best,
      Brian

  2. Are these really 12 axle flatcars? I can only see 6 axels unless I am missing something. (This is a distinct possibility.)

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