During the remarkable 147-year history of the Chicago and North Western Railroad Company from 1848 to 1995, the railroad fielded a variety of main line and branch line service throughout the Midwest and High Plains region, not to mention several locomotive types to move those trains. A secondary C&NW main line from Chicago ran northwest through Wisconsin, Minnesota, and South Dakota to Pierre, Dakota Territory in 1880. This route was finally completed across South Dakota to Rapid City in 1907.
In the late 1970s, many American Locomotive Company units were based at Huron, South Dakota, due to their lightweight and pulling capacity. This specific suitability to the area’s light rail and slow speeds established the Pierre to Winona route as the ALCO line. In this video, photographer Fred Crissey follows the ALCO Line between Winona, Minnesota and Pierre, South Dakota, from 1977 to 1981. Also included are the Plainview, Minnesota and Aberdeen to Huron, South Dakota branch lines. This program features awesome ALCO locomotives that include RS2, RSD4, RSD5, RS32, and C425 models along with EMD SD-7R and SD-9’s. This is one part of the C&NW that was very unique, but short-lived. Let C. Vision bring these memories into your home for life! Silent film with music and narration.