The Diesel Shop

Serving The Railfan Community since 1994

For many years leading up to and after WWII, Detroit was a city of growth and opportunity as well as an important rail transportation hub.

(Photographer unknown / Tom Rock collection)

Last year, new roster development and maintenance activities were paused occasionally so time could be spent preparing profiles of Chicago's Illinois Central Terminal along with the Dearborn and LaSalle Street stations. During the next nine months, the intent is to profile other significant train terminals that have fallen victim to a wrecking ball. We'll begin this month with a look at Detroit's two largest and oldest rail passenger terminals: Fort Street Union Dept (FSUD) and the Michigan Central Station (MCS). Both facilities have played an important role in the commercial, cultural and industrial growth of the city that eventually became known as the "Motor Capital of the World."

The discussion starts with Fort Street Union Depot which was built in downtown Detroit 20 years prior to the taller and better-known passenger station located at Michigan Avenue and Vernor Highway. Later, the spotlight shifts to the Michigan Central Station that survived three decades of neglect to potentially become one of the city's crown jewels.

CSX-TRIBUTE GALLERY. A new photo gallery has been expanded to highlight the growing fleet of locomotives painted to honor the predecessor rail lines that comprise the CSX's upcoming 200th anniversary in 2027. So far, a total of nine tribute units exist. The Clinchfield and RF&P tribute units are rumored to appear in 2024. Fingers crossed.

The Diesel Shop 30th Anniversary Approaches

November 17, 2024 will mark the 30th Anniversary of The Diesel Shop. Each month during the anniversary year (11/2024 to 11/2025) photos of locomotives and / or trains numbered 30 will be featured. Additionally, it is hoped that a webpage can be developed specifically for those models that contain the number 30, such as Alco 430, EMD GP30, GE U30C, etc.

Please note this is NOT a photo contest! The purpose of this request is to collect an ample number of images and stories that directly support each of the three themes. The only stipulation is that you are the photographer of record or the current owner of the image.

We look forward to your participation.

And a final reminder, please remember to be safe and vigilant whenever trackside!

-- R. Craig

Future Profiles:
  • Detroit River Car Ferries
  • Early Dynamometer Cars
  • Great Northern Train Station (Spokane)

Ready Track: New Listings / Major Updates

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Detroit River Car Ferries (Tom Rock collection)

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