With little fanfare, a significant event took place on February 26, 2013. The Village of Windsor became owners of the Windsor Railroad Station, due, in no small part, to the tremendous generosity and foresight of the previous owners, New York Rail Trail. The principals of the New York Rail Trail are Mr. Jim Verboys and Mr. Bill Nasser, two fine gentlemen whom have transferred the station and surrounding property as a gift to the Village of Windsor.
This property closing represents a culmination of no less than twenty years of effort to secure this portion of our community history. Many may well remember the 1997 village centennial book in which our former village historian, Charlie English wrote, "The vacant depot and portions of the railroad bed lie as silent reminders of a more glorious periods of time that has passed by."
Throughout these twenty years, many different avenues were followed in an attempt to gain ownership of this building and reverse its neglect and decay. Patience and perseverance have been rewarded with an opportunity to accomplish this.
Over time, Windsor has lost significant historical landmarks; among those are the original Windsor Academy on College Avenue, and the "second" Windsor Academy on Academy Street, Also lost were many significant structures along South Main Street, including the Eagle Hotel, when "highway improvements" dictated such activities.
The Windsor train station is the sole remaining structure on the former "mainline" of the Delaware and Hudson Railroad which connected Lanesboro, Pennsylvania to Nineveh Junction, New York.
The Delaware and Hudson Railroad started in Carbondale, Pennsylvania, and is the only line to have gone through Windsor. The Susquehanna Valley was one of the last large areas of the state to receive the benefit of railroad access. By 1869, the Albany Susquehanna Railroad had completed its line from Albany to Binghamton. In the same year, a railroad known as the Jefferson Railroad completed a line from Carbondale to Lanesboro/Susquehanna, Pennsylvania. In 1870, the D&H was granted control of the former Albany/Susquehanna following a tumultuous fight between the Erie Railroad and the A&S Railroad. The Delaware and Hudson Railroad had identified an "easy line" that could be constructed from Lanesboro to Nineveh along the Susquehanna River through Windsor. This "easy line" saved a total of twenty-seven miles of railroad by bypassing Binghamton and avoiding the large at Belden Hill. On June 17, 1872, this "easy line" was completed under the incorporated name of Lackawanna & Susquehanna Railroad. This included the Windsor rail station.
It is fitting that the Village should dedicate this station as the Charles L. English Windsor Museum, as a tribute to Charlie and to all those who understand "Let the past ever speak to the present" as quoted on the Windsor Academy yearbook 1886 to 1908.
An open house event will be scheduled for the spring of this year. Mayor Harting and Mrs. English will endeavor to have Mr. Verboys and Mr. Nasser attend and be able to accept the personal appreciation for their generosity.
Pictured to the right is Mayor Ron Harting, Village Historian Luella English, Bill Nasser and Jim Verboys.