Grade Crosssings

Crossing Signs Cross Bucks and Crossing Gates

The issue of Grade Crossing safety devices has come up recently and new information provided on the Yahoo Early Rail site suggests that official regulation on this subject has been in place since the 1830s, so since the beginnings of the railroad business. Elswhere on this site there is a related page dealing exclusively with the role of flagmen at crossings. Here is some information specifically regarding signs and crossing gates.

American Practice in Block Signaling on Google Books. For answers to questions about the extent of the use of electricity in the old days. Another pertinent read is "American Satute Law - 1892" especially pages 421 and 422 for regulations regarding signs and gates at grade crossings. Recently came across this site Railroad Signal Timeline which sheds further light on these developments. And not to forget the "Railroad Extra" section concerning Parts, Mechanisms, Various Apparatus and Safety Devices

Crossing Signs

Signs similar to this appear in photos back to the early early railroading era and also, later in conjunction with elictric/pnuematic crossing gates as in the title photo. Is the conical finial on the sign post actually an automatically actuated bell?

A simple crossbuck from Leonardville, KS, for branch lines and rural areas.

Crossing Gates

From AARTs Images - Floral Park, NY

At the Jackson Michigan depot.

Automatic crossing gates - Dayton, Oh, from the late ninteenth century.

A crossing gate and switch control tower in Grand Rapids, Mi.

Crossing gates from Sartoga, NY

Crossing gates and control tower in Evanston, Wyoming