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Coudersport & Port Allegany Snow Plow

Built sometime between 1889 and 1894 the Coudersport & Port Allegany snowplow performed its' utilitarian duty until it was retired in 1945. The snowplow was produced by the Russell Company of Ridgeway Pennsylvania, and was a very necessary tool to a railroad line that lie in the mountain region of northern Pennsylvania.

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Having no motive power of its' own, the snowplow would be pushed in front of one or more steam engines up and down the line. The trip could be very jarring, as the plow might hit fallen trees or other objects that would fall with the weight of the snow. Depending on the terrain being covered and the amount of the snowfall, more than one engine could be used. The formula failed one day in 1945, when a heavy snowfall necessitated two engines to push the plow. All went well until the plow hit a particularly stubborn snow bank near the Gold water tower. The end result was the #1 engine jackknifing the #5 engine across the track. Subsequent damage caused the retirement of the Coudersport & Port Allegany Railroads snowplow.

Once the C&PA snowplow was retired, the line used a bulldozer for all of its snow removal needs. Today the restored Coudersport & Port Allegany Railroads snowplow is on display at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania in Strasburg, Pennsylvania. It is believed to be the oldest such piece produced by the Russell Company still in existence and a physical tribute to the railroad that it served.

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