Cape Vincent RAILROADS


The history of the turnpikes and railroad interests of the county is fully given in special chapters, but a brief statement here seems to be in place respecting this town. The first thoroughfare was the State road, which was completed from Brownville to Port Putnam in 1803. The turnpike was made several years later; and in 1832 a Black River company was organized, with legal authority to build either a canal railroad from Rome to Cape Vincent, Sacket's Harbor, or Ogdensburgh. But this company did not exist very long. In 1836 another act of the legislature granted the right of constructing the Rome and Cape Vincent railroad, which likewise failed after a few months of struggle. Nine years later the matter was again agitated, with more capital within reach, more meetings in Kingston, Cape Vincent, and Watertown, and in 1848 work was commenced at Rome, and the last rail laid to the shore of the St. Lawrence in the spring of 1852. The first train appeared in April of that year amid great rejoicing and hearty cheers. Regular trains began to run in the following May. The Rome, Watertown, and Ogdensburgh company, which also controls the Lake Ontario Shore road to Niagara river, now owning and successfully managing the route, have 3000 feet of wharfage on the front of the village. The freight-house is 600-feet long, and the passenger depot, including the hotel, is 200 by 50 feet. No cars are run on the Sabbath, and no accidents of any moment have ever occurred. The financial embarrassment of the times does not affect the successful management of the entire line, although it may have an effect upon the pockets of the stockholders.

Twenty-two years ago five propellers connected the Cape Vincent and Rome railroad with the Michigan Central at Detroit, by means of which immense quantities of freight were transported to and from this port. The magnificent Ontario steamers "Bay State" and "New York" touched here every day in their trip between Ogdensburgh and Lewistown; and the ferry line to Kingston brought the town into direct communication with another steamboat route, which extended to all the principal landings on the Canadian side of the lake. (Jefferson County History, by L. H. Everts, 1878 - Transcribed by Holice B.Young. Original HTML by Debbie Axtman top


© Kevin Subra.   This site was begun September 7, 2000 in order to encourage interest in the history and ancestry of Cape Vincent. Thank you for visiting! E-mail the webmaster, or visit his Subra Family website which he is developing to help his family get to know THEIR history!

Thanks to Holice B. Young and Debbie Axtman for their previous efforts in launching this project!


This nonprofit research site is a USGenNet CertifiedSafe-Site™ and affiliate of the American Local History Network, Inc. (ALHN). Web hosting is generously provided by USGenNet, a nonprofit, tax-exempt public benefit corporation. This site makes no claim to the copyrights of individual submitters, and is in full compliance with USGenNet's Conditions of Use.