An old Railroad near Kennells Mills, PA

In 2009 Mike McKenzie did a foot search for the remains of the “S Mill” that is shown on the 1876 Beers map of Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA. At the time of his search, Mike and I were both operating under the incorrect assumption that the local railroad that used to follow Gladdens Run serviced the “S Mill”. This assumption was bolstered by the fact that Mike’s foot search indicated that the old railroad appeared to go no further than the general area of the “S-Mill” and fulling mill. The remains of the “S-Mill” indicated that it was a small water-powered mill that wouldn’t have merited its own railroad.

A now non-existent website had information about the old railroad. That website explains that the H.D. & W sawmill of Cooks Mills, Bedford County, began operations in 1912, and had a narrow gauge railroad that ran over to the Kennell’s Mills area of Somerset County. Apparently the sawmill or the railroad, or both, were jokingly known as the “High, Dry and Windy”, based on the initials of the sawmill name. The website indicates that after the timbering was complete, the Cook’s Mills Coal and Clay Company operated the railroad from 1915 into the 1920’s as part of its business. The topographic map below that shows the railroad is purportedly from 1923.

A map showing the old railroad near Kennells Mills, PA

L. Dietle, with significant input from Mike McKenzie.
September, 2009

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