Oneonta’s “Little Red Caboose” Still Stands the Test of Time
Oneonta was once one of the busiest railroad towns in Upstate New York. Several train lines ran through the city, and a pair of elaborate depots welcomed incoming and outgoing visitors from near and far.
The railyard was the largest major employer in the city. Many of the workers were immigrants, mostly Italian. The D&H railroad work house could claim to be "the world's largest roundhouse," where efforts to repair trains went on around the clock. At its peak, the D&H railyard feature a massive roundtable which swiveled the heavy locomotives around slowly and guided them into any one of 52 repair bays.
But that was long ago, and the railyards today are swampy, neglected and waiting for a second chance. Today, all that is left of the famous railcards are some pieces of old tracks and the original towering smokestack and coal chute.
Still, one relic from Oneonta's days as railroad center still exists.
It is a little red caboose enshrined in glass in the city's large downtown park. The caboose has been called "the most historical railroad car in America."