The Consolidated Rail Corporation, commonly known as Conrail, was the primary Class I railroad in the Northeast U.S. between 1976 and 1999. The federal government created it to take over the potentially profitable lines of bankrupt carriers, including the Penn Central Transportation Company and Erie Lackawanna Railway.
With the benefit of regulatory changes, Conrail began to turn a profit in the 1980s and was turned over to private investors in 1987.
The two remaining Class I railroads in the East, CSX Transportation and the Norfolk Southern Railway, agreed in 1997 to split the system approximately equally, returning rail freight competition to the Northeast by essentially undoing the 1968 merger of the Pennsylvania Railroad and New York Central Railroad that created Penn Central.
Conrail EMD FP7 - Engine facility - Conway, Pennsylvania, November 11, 1977 - An eclectic early Conrail group. Note that all three colors of classification lights are lit on the 2479.
Conrail GG-1 - Engine facility - Enola, Pennsylvania, May 21, 1977 - "Rivets" in newly acquired patriotic dress.
Conrail EMD GP40 - Enola, Pennsylvania, May 21, 1977 - All in the family now... except for that red unit at the left, which is now Delaware & Hudson.
Conrail GG-1 - Enola, Pennsylvania, May 21, 1977 - A colorful "Rivets" and friends.
Conrail EMD GP38-2 - Conway, Pennsylvania, November 11, 1977 - Still relatively early in the transition era.
LINK: Please visit George W. Hamlin's Transportation Website for more information and photos.