This Week Featuring:
- Published: September 26, 2014
- By George L. Nitti with Kerryl Ann Ebneter. History by Richard W. Hull
Located on South Street and Railroad Avenue, the train station was built in 1893 at a cost of $10,000. Here are some other interesting facts and history directly quoted from Richard W. Hull’s People of the Valleys Revisited: History of Warwick, New York, 1700 – 2005.
- Railroad fever in the lower Hudson valley began in the 1830’s and Warwick played its part almost from the start.
- The period c.1862 to c.1916 was the golden age of mass rail transportation in Orange County.
- No other development in the 19th century wrought as profound an impact on the economic lives of Orange County businessmen and farmers as railroads.
- The advent of railroads posed a formidable challenge to long-distance roadways….Within a short time, railroads led to a disastrous decline in turnpike traffic. From 1842, revenues dropped precipitously and the toll roads soon fell into disrepair, despite a state law requiring their upkeep.
- The opening of the Warwick Valley Railroad in 1862 changed the political balance in the town as well as the responsibilities of local government. Overnight, the village of Warwick became the political, commercial, industrial and financial center of the town.
- The tiny Warwick Valley Railroad became the first in America to use refrigerated cars to transport fluid milk. By 1880, milk shipments, alone, accounted for more than half of gross revenue. Nevertheless, the tiny railroad transported more than milk. During the Civil War, iron mines along the state boundary were re-activated and ore was brought down from mountains to wagons to Warwick village. From there, it was shipped over the Warwick Valley Railroad ….
- An 1882 timetable reveals that a passenger leaving New York City at 7:50 A.M. could expect to reach downtown Warwick by 11:10 the same morning! A passenger boarding Philadelphia at 7:32 in the morning would arrive in Warwick at 5:50 that evening.
- The one story stone and frame station has a hipped, bellcast roof with projecting dormers and tower and was constructed as a station for the Lehigh and Hudson River Railroad.
- Warwick’s valleys soon became a haven for prosperous professionals from New York, who built fashionable homes here and commuted regularly to the city.
- Henry Ford’s model “T” sounded the death-knell for mass transit.
To read and learn more about Warwick’s history, purchase a copy of Dr. Hull’s book at Ye Olde Warwick Bookshoppe, 31 Main St., Warwick, NY. (845) 544-7184