Daily Archives: October 22, 2021

Mystery Caboose in Bethesda

I have long heard legend of a caboose that sat forlorn on a siding in Bethesda in the years after the railroad was abandoned. Apparently a private owner had parked the caboose there for future restoration or display, but instead it sat, torched by an arsonist and rotting away until finally being removed.

Caboose on a siding in Bethesda.
Date unknown – likely ca late 1980s/early 1990s. Collection of the Coalition for the Capital Crescent Trail.

I have no idea of the disposition of the caboose or of its heritage. The only B&O caboose I could find that resembles this one is an I-10 class, but it may be a stretch. There appear to be numbers on the side of it, but the only one I can definitively read is an eight and perhaps a five to the left. I believe it sat on the siding just south of River Rd. on the west side of the tracks; the location of the old oil unloading siding.

If anyone knows any additional information about this caboose and its heritage, I’d love to hear it!

PS. I have a large collection of images shot in the years after the Branch had been abandoned and during its conversion to a rail trail that I will be sharing over the coming months. Stay tuned!