Story: Physical Condition - Chicago & Northwestern Railway - 1909

This line was inspected August 18 and 19 [1909]. From Menominee to Powers this line is laid with 72 pound rail, is well ballasted, well tied and in very good alignment.  Fence is in fair condition. From Powers to Watersmeet, 72 pound rail is in very good condition. Track well tied and ballasted and in good alignment.  Watersmeet to lronwood, 60 pound rail is in fair condition, with good gravel ballast.  Fenced with barbed wire where necessary. Brush not cut on right of way.  Crossing signs and crossings in fair condition. Powers to Ishpeming 72 pound rail, in good condition. Ishpeming to Negaunee track to be re-laid with 80 pound rail during the season. Right of way fairly clear of brush and weeds.  50 miles of new fence built and renewed during the year. Three new bridges consisting of cement abutments and steel girders, taking the place of wooden structures.. A new station at Stephenson, costing $4,000 has been erected. The road and track is in very good condition. Right of way in many places needs clearing of under brush and station grounds in many places need attention and many stations need painting. The engines and equipment of this company were found to be in first class condition. Considerable track needed lifting and lining which was being given attention by several floating gangs and would no doubt be in first class condition for the fall traffic. In many cases Railroad Company's wires did not comply with the regular specifications as required where they cross the tracks at stations. All freight cars equipped with automatic couplers. Surface cattle guards and wing fences in good condition and whitewashed.
 

[From the 1909 Annual Report of the Michigan Railroad Commission, State Library of Michigan.]