Welcome to the Ontario & Western Railway Historical Society website.  It is in the process of being updated and changed, with simpler navigation and added content.  

Besides this page being all new (see the new items, below), and various updates to other pages, we have an all new CONTACTS list and STORE page.  New content has been added, with more to follow.

The problems logging into the MEMBERS-ONLY page have been fixed.  It now works as usual.

For now, much of the website is a work in progress, and during the transition, some of the old content may be temporarily unavailable.  You may want to check back periodically as it progresses.



LATEST WEBSITE CHANGES:  Two new articles:

100 Years Ago This Month

Members only:  Remains of the O&W Railway Fifty Years after Abandonment - Part 6 - Rome & Utica Branches - by Drew James

UPDATE:  The building housing our archives, library, scanning, copying, sales, storage and office has been sold.  The new owners plan to use the space we're in for other purposes, and we will have to move by the end of the year.  The new owners have offered us a new location to move to, but we're still looking for alternate locations.  We have been continuing the early preparations for the move that we started a while back.  They involve a lot of time-consuming work.  If you would like to help, please contact Jeff Otto (see Contacts page).

The Middletown Times Herald Record newspaper reported in December, 2013 that the Middletown Community Health Center (MCHC, owner of the O&W Middletown station) has been approved for a $500,000 state grant to help turn the station into its new center of health services in Middletown. 

As of mid February, 2014, the O&W Middletown station has been listed on the New York State Register of Historic Places, and the New York State Historic Preservation Officer has nominated it for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.  Hopefully, this, along with the above grant and their new availability of naming opportunities for different parts of the facility, will help raise the needed funds to restore the building.


Wednesday, August 27 – Mamakating Historical Society, in the old school house on Summitville Rd. in Summitville, Program by Jeff Otto, Railroads of the Mamakating Valley, 7 pm

Friday, September 5 – O&W RHS Membersip Meeting, Program by Mark Kennaugh, Walton and the Delhi Branch, Part 2, covering from Hamden to Delhi.

Friday & Saturday, September 12-13, The Erie Lackawanna Railway Historical Society Joint 2014 Convention with the O&WRHS at the Holiday Inn at Crystal Run Rd in Middletown. Programs will be from the ELHS, O&WRHS, M&NJRHS members and more. Programs start at 7 pm Friday Sept 12th, and 8 am Saturday Sept 13th. There will be a special room rate at the Holiday Inn for attendees. Registration form was mailed out in the Ontario Express newsletter, and it and more info is at www.erielackhs.org (see link, below)  On-line registration closes five days before event (after which registration can be done at the event itself). Mark your Calendars!  All aboard! 

Link to ELHS website information page

Saturday, September 13, The Roscoe O&W Railway Museum annual dinner at the Rockland House, Roscoe, NY. Fred Fries will do the program "Mapping the O&W” about the O&W right-of-way in the Town of Rockland, from Morsston to Roscoe. Though much has been changed due to the construction of the Route 17 Quickway, some landmarks and ruins still remain.  Social hour is 5:30 pm with dinner at 6:30 pm.  Choices of entrees are prime rib $26, parmesan crusted tilapia or stuffed chicken breast $24. Reservations must be made by September 7, mail choice and check to Roscoe O&W Railway Museum Dinner, PO Box 305, Roscoe NY 12776.  Any questions, please call 607-498-4346 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  

Friday, September 19 – M&NJ RHS meeting, Maybrook Railroad Museum (Date moved back one week).

Sunday, September 28 – Lehigh Valley Chapter NRHS 38th Annual Railroadiana and Model RR Show and Sale, 10am - 4pm, GREAT NEW LOCATION! At the Charles Chrin Community Center 4100 Green Pond Road, Easton, PA 18045,  Admission $4, under 12 free, info - Pete Terp at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 610-824-7730

Friday, October 4 – O&W RHS Membership Meeting, Program by Bob Thamsen.

Sunday, October 19 – Kingston Show, Murphy Midtown Center, Kingston, NY, 10am to 4pm.

Saturday, November 1 – Tri- States Train Show at the Port Jervis High School 20 Route 209 9am to 3 pm. Admission $5 Children freee. Call Jack Youchah at 845-651-7872 for more information.

Saturday, November 8 – O&W RHS Convention at the Meadowbrook Lodge. More information to follow.

Friday, November 14 – M&NJ RHS meeting, Maybrook Railroad Museum

Friday, December 5 – O&W RHS Membership Meeting, Program by Tobe Carey, DVD, Railroads in the Catskills.

Friday, January 2, 2015 – O&W RHS Membership Meeting, Program TBA                                               

Notes concerning O&W RHS meetings: 

Meetings are held at the Middletown Senior Center, 62-70 W. Main St, at 7:30pm

Programs can change without notice, and for entertainment listed as “TBA” please check this site for updates -- or our discussion group: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/owrhs/info or FaceBook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OWRHS/


While not a published directly by the O&W RHS, the exciting new DVD, "Rails to the Catskills", includes an excellent section about the O&W, and the Society did have a major part in its creation.  It is a wonderful production that features noted authors William F. Helmer, Bob Mohowski, and John M. Ham, along with many others, and has many photos and movie film segments about the O&W.  It not only fills the void created now that our own O&W DVD is no longer available, but adds a whole new video dimension.

It is a production by Tobe Carey, of Willow Mixed Media in Shokan, NY.  Tobe is a professional videographer, and the video makes his knowledge and skills very evident.  Here is a link to a trailer for the DVD:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2m1NEqZHhxU

The DVD is available for $20 at our sales table, as well as by mail order.  Note that for mail order sales orders between $10 and $50, please add $7 for shipping, and for totals over $50, please add $9.



President's message

Along the O&W - Then and Now, contributed by Ray Kelly

When a Switch makes a Junction, by John Taibi

O&W Ramblings No. 14 - by Mal Houck, What’s in a Herald?

How the Telegraph was First to Control Train Movements, contributed By Charles M. Breiner

O&W’s snow troubles 100 years ago

The Ontario Express newsletter is sent to all members.  It is not available for purchase, but new members receive the most recent three newsletter issues.


See the Store page for availability...


See the Store page for availability...