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New Jersey Herald - September 18, 1966 issue
Rail Passenger Service To End In County Oct. 3

Newton--The last remaining railroad passenger service in Sussex County will be terminated Oct. 3 when the Erie Lackawanna Railroad puts new schedules in operation and discontinues all but freight service between Netcong and Andover Junction. The company has been operating one passenger train out of Andover Junction in the Morning and one back at night.

Discontinuance of the passenger service in Sussex County is in accordance with Public Utilities Commission ruling, which also permits the company to reduce service on other branch lines by about 50 per cent.

The PUC originally granted permission for discontinuance of the Netcong-Andover Junction passenger service last May, but ordered suspension stayed until the railroad company submitted satisfactory revised schedules for other operations. The schedules have now been submitted and approved, and the discontinuance approved for Oct. 3.

Last May, the PUC permitted the company to halt all service between Andover Junction and Branchville. The last passenger train to operate north of Andover Junction was on July 13. Freight service has also been discontinued north of Andover Junction, but there will still be freight service between Netcong and Andover Junction. The nearest operating passenger station will be at Netcong.

The railroad company sought permission to discontinue service on the Sussex Branch because of constantly declining business. The Sussex Branch dates back to 1848 when the line was incorporated as the Sussex Mine Railroad. Three years later the line connected with the Morris and Essex Railroad, and in 1853 changed its name to Sussex Railroad Company. The Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad bought the controlling interest in the line in 1881, and ultimately fully merged with the DL&W in 1945. Later the DL&W merged with the Erie Railroad to become the Erie Lackawanna.

Also pending is the company's application before the Interstate Commerce Commission for permission to discontinue four main line passenger trains between Hoboken, Binghamton, N.Y., and Chicago Ill. The company contends it is losing $237,000 a year on the service.

Under the New Jersey PUC order, complete service will be discontinued between Netcong and Washington.