Timeline - 1917

  • World War I continues.

  • March 21:  President Wilson asks Congress to declare war on Germany.  [STOV]

  • Spring:  Soo Line completes a new 900', 150 pocket concrete and steel ore dock (No. 2) at Ashland.  The former timber dock was dismantled in 1919.  These docks were used to ship ore from Michigan's Gogebic Range.  [WC-Spring/1996]

  • April 9:  The New York Central (former LS&MS) moves its passenger train operation from the Brush Street Depot to the Michigan Central terminal.  NYC trains no longer operated on Dequindre Street as far as Lake Shore Junction, and they ceased to use the Gratiot and Woodward stations.  [MRC-6/1973]

  • June 15:  Garden Bay Railway discontinues operations.  [MRRC]

  • Summer:  Annpere interlocking tower, now 20 years old, is destroyed by fire.  It is rebuilt.  [MSAI]

  • August:  A detachment from Troop 3 of the Michigan State troops is assigned to guard the Grand Trunk tunnel from Port Huron to Sarnia.  Acting on tips, federal marshals had thwarted a plot by a German alien Albert Karl Kaltschmidt to blow up the Port Huron tunnel as well as several facilities in Detroit.  While at Port Huron, troopers lived in tents and paneled boxcars provided b rail officials on a nearby siding.  Troopers took turns manning a sentry booth at the tunnel entrance, boarding trains to check for German aliens and investigating suspicious characters in the general vicinity.  [PPD, p. 58]

  • September: The PM announces they will establish car repair shops at Boardman, near Traverse City. [RR-1917-0901:279]

  • September 24:  Detroit & Mackinac Ry. ceases operation on their Black Lake Branch.  [NK]

  • October:  The DSS&A Old Powder Mill spur in Marquette (from their branch line through downtown Marquette) is removed.  [SSP]

  • December 28:  The United States Railroad Administration (USRA) takes over operation of the nation's railroads as a wartime measure.   [MDOT]  [GW] notes that the Detroit & Mackinac Ry. was the smallest Class I railroad in the United States, and thus the smallest road operated by the USRA.

  • December:  The Copper Range Railroad enters into an agreement with the Mohawk Mining Co. and the Wolverine Copper Mining Co. for the transportation of their rock, coal and supplies. The COPR improves the Mohawk, Wolverine and Keweenaw Central Railroad tracks for operation, including scale tracks at Mill-Mine Jct. The railroad purchases the Mohawk and Traverse Bay Railroad to carry copper rock from the Wolverine and Mohawk Mines to the stamp mills at Gay. [CRH]


  • C&O Walbridge Yard opens near Toledo.   [COHS 5/01]

  • The Keweenaw Central operates 37 miles north of Calumet. [AAD]

  • The first of over a hundred miles of railroad track are laid at the Ford Rouge Plant.  [EMR4]

  • The Copper Range Railroad completes its line from Calumet Jct. to Mohawk, 1.47 miles.  [RA-1/4/1918]

  • The Detroit Terminal Railroad completes construction of its line from Station 416+74 to 529+25.  [RA-1/4/1918]

  • Pere Marquette RR constructs new engine facilities in Flint.   [PMHS]

  • Pere Marquette Railroad constructs a new station at Fowlerville.  The station also had a distinctive platform canopy supported by single pillars.  [COHS/7-2002]

  • Pere Marquette builds a new coal dock at McGrew Yard in Flint.  It has a 150-ton capacity.  [PM45]

  • Between 1916 and 1918, two lift bridges are constructed on the Delray Connecting/DT&I track at Zug Island.  [EMR4]

  • The Copper Range Railroad acquires 12 miles of the Mohawk and Travers Bay Railroad to carry copper rock from the Wolverine and Mohawk Mines to the stamp mills at Gay.  [CRAR]

  • Railroad freight jams all eastern ports as a result of a back up in Atlantic shipping.  Freight cars are used for storage, causing a severe shortage throughout the country.  [STOV]

  • Building B completed at the Ford Rouge complex.  [DWS]

  • Highland Park and Royal Oak Railway begins service on Stephenson Highway.  [DWS]

  • Nearly 5,000,000 automobiles are registered in the nation.  [STOV]

  • The Lincoln Motor Car Company builds at plant on Warren Avenue, near Livernois.  [BOM]

  • The DT&I completes construction of their "South Yards".  [RA-1/4/1918]

  • The Grand Trunk Western completes a new classification yard at Gillen, at a cost of $275,000.  [RA-1/4/1918]

  • The Ann Arbor Railroad erects a new station at Pittsfield Junction, south of Ann Arbor, at a connection with the NYC's Ypsilanti branch.  The cost of the station is $2,200.  This station takes the place of a station which was burned down two years ago.  [MCR-1916 pg. 44]

 


 Timeline Key:

  • Railroad event in Michigan
  • Event relating to mining
  • Event related to car ferries
  • Event outside of Michigan
  • Improvement in Technology
  • Railroad built or extended
  • Railroad abandoned and/or removed
  • Economic panic or depression