The Milwaukee Road's Southwestern Line still sees regular train service from Clinton, WI, west through Beloit, WI, and into Illinois. On July 27, 2004, a UP (C&NW) switch job was both pushing and pulling freight cars at the same time into Clinton over the former Southwestern Line tracks for part of the journey.
Clinton Jct. was the location where the C&NW's (now UP) Janesville line from Harvard, IL, crossed the Milwaukee Road's Southwestern Line with an interchange point. UP owns the former Southwestern Line tracks from Clinton Jct. west to I-90 in Beloit. UP uses IC&E trackage rights within Beloit, reaching the Fairbanks-Morse factory along the Rock River via a meandering branch line.
A tandem of UP locomotives crawls into Clinton with a heavy load in tow-a drop-center flatcar holding a huge Fairbanks-Morse engine under a tarp. According to the crew, this load was the first of several to be retrieved from F-M's Beloit factory. The train is veering over to the connecting track. The former Southwestern Line continued straight toward the camera at one time. Now weeds occupy the former right-of-way.
A better view of the Fairbanks-Morse load under a tarp. The crew will spot this train at the yard just southeast of the junction. This track connects the former Southwestern Line of the Milwaukee Road to the UP (C&NW) Janesville line.
The train is approaching the junction and will soon switch the cars onto one of the yard tracks. Kids on summer break enjoy the trackside show on the left.
This view looks east by northeast down the right-of-way of the Milwaukee Road's former Southwestern Line where it left Clinton. You can see remains of the grade crossing signal equipment and foundations-was it an overhead gantry type signal? The ROW from this point east to Bradwell Junction near Darian, WI, is no longer in use as nature reclaims the land now minus tracks and ballast.
Finally, a view of downtown Clinton, WI, looking north from Clinton Jct. At one time it was served by two railroads giving residents plenty of direct connections. In the foreground is a disconnected spur track partly buried in gravel and dirt.
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