Updates to CGW

CGW f-engine

Tonight I spent my first night really diving into the data in my new Rand McNally Enlarged Business Atlas from 1903. What a great book! With it’s help, I can now see that I had much of the CGW segment from Oelwein to Dubuque on the wrong path. In the process of fixing it, I found the tunnel in East Dubuque that had escaped me for some time. I also found there were several stops listed in the book that were not in the schedule I had from the 1950s.

I spent several hours putting in all the changes including many on the Minneapolis branch… then Google Earth quit on me. I thought it was saving as I went, but I lost two hours of work. Ah well. It was much faster the second time.

My goal is to get all of the Chicago Great Western charted out to the 1903 standards before updating much of anything else. I can tell you that there is no way I’ll be able to put this level of detail into every line nation wide…. not for many years.


By Mike Miley

Mike is the founder of Shadows of Trains and is an all-around transportation nut. The idea for this site started when Mike was out flying and saw a trail head off into the distance and wondered "what is that?" This translated into using web maps to chart his curiosities.


  1. I grew up in Bellwood, Il. a short distance from the CGW main line. I remember when the CGW and the CA&E still ran. It was a sad day to see the abandonment of both lines. As luck would have it, in 1995 I moved to West Chicago only about 2 blocks south of the former Ingalton station on the CGW. As far as I know, the section of track from the former EJ&E east to the Master Halco company (@1 mile) is the only remaining section of CGW track still in operation in the Chicago area. One can see the platform of the Ingalton station today as it sits @ 50 yards west of the RT. 59 overpass. My question is are there any photos of the Bellwood station? Do we know where it once stood? Hope you can help.

  2. Worked on CGW “Section Gang” out of Waterville, Mn for 4 or 5 summers back in the late 50s and early 60s. Lived in Morristown, Mn and the tracks passed right between our property and the depot.

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