Timeline - 1959


Last Year | Next Year


  • June 1: Six miners are killed due to an in-rush of hot gases and steam at the Sherwood Mine in Iron River. This is the last major underground mine disaster in Michigan.

  • July 15: A steel strike begins and immediately effects dock and railroad workers in Michigan's Iron Range.  The strike is finally settled on November 9th.  The DSS&A ore dock in Marquette sets a record for the tons loaded in the month of December. [RO]

  • July 25: Pennsylvania RR discontinues its "Red Arrow" passenger train from Detroit to New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC. [MDOT]

  • August 6: Annpere interlocking is converted from a tower operation to an automatic interlocker.  Supervisory control is transferred to C&O dispatchers in Grand Rapids. [MSAI]

  • October: CPR replaces conventional passenger train from Sudbury to Sault Ste. Marie with an RDC car.  This was the first RDC car into the Sault. [IT-5/81]

  • December 24: "Beeliner" discontinued between Jackson and Bay City, via Owosso and Saginaw. [MDOT]


  • New York Central's "Beeliner" a self-propelled passenger, baggage and mail car, ceases operations from Jackson to Grand Rapids. [MDOT]

  • GTW stops using their Battle Creek roundhouse.  It is razed in 1974. [IT-12/1975]

  • Welded aluminum cars without a center sill are introduced. [SAM]

  • Hydrocushion underframes are introduced on railcars. [SAM]

  • Heavy vertical lift bridge completed between Houghton and Hancock. The twin-towered, vertical lift bridge carries four highway lanes on the upper segment and a railroad track on the lower level across the Portage Lake Ship canal. When fully raised, the lift span provides a clearance of 104 feet for shipping. [CRWS/BOM]

  • "Roadrailer," first experimental dual wheeled combination rail and highway vehicles in the U.S., begins operating between Grand Rapids and Traverse City on the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway. [MDOT]


 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