Edwards curve

Discussion in 'General' started by Larry F., Oct 18, 2012.

  1. Larry F.

    Larry F. Member

    I was on Google Maps the other day looking for something along the Ash Grove sub and discovered a sharp curve just southeast of Edwards. Does anyone know why the original line was built with this much of a curve? If memory serves this land is flat with no natural obstuctions and when the KCFS&M built there would have been nothing there. As a side note, why wouldn't the Frisco have straightened it or did it not pose any operating problems. Thank you. Larry
  2. mvtelegrapher

    mvtelegrapher Member

    Actually, Edwards is at the top of a hill and during steam days lots of trains had helpers to shove them out of town. The curves are so the line to Springfield can descend the back side of the hill. If someone has a track chart handy of the Ash Grove and Afton Subs that will tell how much of climb this is. You can see on arial photo's the former wye to turn locos at the top of the hill. Also, Don Banwart talks about this in his book about Fort Scott and Bourbon County RR entitled Rails, Rivalry and Romance. I also took pictures of 1522 from the north south county road on the east side of the curve and you can tell this area is not really flat.

    John Chambers
  3. Karl

    Karl 2008 Engineer of the Year Frisco.org Supporter

    John is exactly correct. The area RR south of Edward has a bit of topographic relief, and the curves are needed to avoid high spots, and to keep the grade manageable.

    On October 24, 1953, train 105 derailed because of a broken rail in this area. See attached ICC report.

    Attached Files:

  4. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    The topo map really highlights that the railroad surveyors did an excellent job of picking the right path.
  5. Rancho Bob

    Rancho Bob Member

    I took this opportunity to revist the Edwards - Ft Scott area via Google Earth. Other than remembering the overpass south of Edwards as the OK line dashed off toward Girard, the whole area has changed vastly since we made our many trips down US 69 from KC to Joplin. This community name varies from map to map. On some Edward, on some Edwards... although I believe there actually is another Edwards, KS.

  6. Larry F.

    Larry F. Member

    Ah, how one eyes can deceive! I used to go down 69 to Weir quite a bit and the land south of Edward to north of Arcadia always looked reasonably "flat" and that's what prompted my question. Again, I'm indebted to you guys for clarifying the situation, Thank you all. Larry
  7. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    Technically the junction on the Frisco was named Edward, not Edwards...
  8. mvtelegrapher

    mvtelegrapher Member


    Note that the name on the company track chart that Karl attached shows Edwards. I have seen and heard both used by Frisco crews and on Frisco documents. I will look at Banwarts book tonight and see how he shows it and maybe he elaborates on the name difference.

  9. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    John, well I'll be dipped. Next time I will check my references before making a statement based soley on anecdotal evidence.

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