Hamilton station (Ohio)

Hamilton (HMN) is a former railroad station on Amtrak's Cardinal route between Chicago and New York City. The station in Hamilton, Ohio, was served by the Cardinal from August 1980 until October 31, 2005, when it was discontinued as a stop.[3] Constructed by the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton Railroad (later acquired by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad), the building is still owned by CSX though currently unused. It sits at the junction of the Indianapolis Subdivision with the Toledo Subdivision both part of the CSX Louisville Division, and headed south of the station the line is known as the Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision, also due to a directional running agreement most CSX and Norfolk Southern freight trains will use the Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision headed north to New River Junction in New Miami, Ohio where Norfolk Southern trains diverge to the left on the New Castle District, and CSX trains diverge to the right on the Toledo Subdivision. Now headed south towards Cincinnati most CSX and Norfolk Southern trains will diverge at the Butler St. Interlocker just blocks before the station heading south on the New Castle District. The Pennsylvania Railroad, followed by the Penn Central used another station, one on Maple Avenue, until 1971.

Hamilton, OH
inter-city rail station
Hamilton station, March, 1993.jpg
Hamilton station in March 1993
General information
Location432 South Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard (US Rt. 127), Hamilton, Ohio 45011
United States
Coordinates39°23′39″N 84°33′33″W / 39.3943°N 84.5591°W / 39.3943; -84.5591Coordinates: 39°23′39″N 84°33′33″W / 39.3943°N 84.5591°W / 39.3943; -84.5591
Elevation183 m / 600 ft
Owned byCSX Transportation
Platformsside platform
Other information
Station codeHMN
OpenedYear built unknown (Amtrak service) August 1980[2]
ClosedOctober 31, 2005[1] (Amtrak service)
Former passenger services
Preceding station BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak Following station
toward Chicago
Cardinal Cincinnati
toward New York
until 1986
toward Chicago
Cincinnati (River Road)
until 1991
toward New York
Preceding station Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Following station
Oxford Springfield – Hamilton Terminus
South Hamilton Crossing Yard (Pit Yard)
toward Cincinnati
Toledo Division New River Yard
toward Detroit

Passenger serviceEdit

Historical serviceEdit

The station was a stop for all the Baltimore and Ohio trains from Cincinnati to Detroit via Dayton and Toledo. In 1965, these included the Cincinnatian and the Night Express.[4] In the final years of B&O passenger train service between Cincinnati and Detroit, the Cincinnatian was the last of these trains bound directly north. Amtrak opted not to continue the service north of Hamilton to Dayton and Detroit.[5]

Recent yearsEdit

The station was a stop for Amtrak's Cardinal from 1980 until October 31, 2005.[6] It was not a heavily patronized stop in recent years, and only had a waiting room. Ticketing and baggage service were not available at this location. The Cardinal originally stopped at Hamilton regularly, but poor station conditions, low ridership, and inconvenient arrival/departure times caused Amtrak to convert it into a flag stop in November 2004 and discontinue the stop altogether a year later, although the train still passes by the station without stopping.[7][8]

City officials, as of February 2021, have called for Hamilton to be added as a stop in Cincinnati–Chicago passenger trains.[9]


In 2020, the city of Hamilton was trying to develop a plan to prevent a planned demolition of the station by its owner CSX as part of a track modernization plan. The city is considering purchasing the building and moving it several blocks to Third Street and Sycamore Street. After restoration, they hope to utilize the building as a transportation hub, museum, restaurant, or a farmers' market.[10]

Steam excursionsEdit

The last steam locomotive operated through Hamilton guiding a Baltimore & Ohio freight train in May 1958. A year later, in May 1959, two retired steam locomotives stored at South Hamilton Yard were sent to Cincinnati to be scrapped.

Steam excursions have stopped at the station with Nickel Plate 765, in 1984 as a Cincinnati 1984 National Railway Historical Society National Convention excursions, on August 25, 1984 from Cincinnati to Muncie, Indiana, which would take the Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision to Hamilton than take the New Castle District at New River Junction in New Miami, Ohio. The next day on August 26, on a trip from Cincinnati to Indianapolis over the Indianapolis Subdivision west from Hamilton, Ohio after coming up the CSX Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision again. The engine would pass by again September 4 on a one way ferry move hauling freight taking the same route as the trip to Muncie, this time headed from Ludlow, Kentucky back home to Ft. Wayne, Indiana.

Would also pass thru September 9, 1982 hauling freight on a one way ferry move from Lima, Ohio to Cincinnati on the CSX Toledo Subdivision for weekend excursions after coming from its homebase in Ft. Wayne. These excursions on September 11–12, 1982 from Cincinnati to Muncie, IN ran on the Norfolk Southern New Castle District. Would pass thru yet again on another one way ferry move on October 27, 1986, from Cincinnati back home to Ft. Wayne on the way back from pulling the New River Train in West Virginia taking the CSX Cincinnati Terminal Subdivision, than the Norfolk Southern New Castle District at New River Junction in New Miami, Ohio.

On October 15, 1990 it would pass thru on a one way ferry move hauling freight again headed from Lima, Ohio to Cincinnati while on its way to West Virginia to pull the New River Train again, than headed back thru on October 29. A steam excursion as Chesapeake & Ohio 2765 on a trip sponsored by the Cincinnati Railroad Club on October 3, 1993, on another trip from Cincinnati to Indianapolis and return over the CSX Indianapolis Subdivision.

The Chessie Safety Express with Chesapeake & Ohio 614 would pass thru May 9, 1981 on a round trip from Cincinnati to Lima, Ohio and return on the Chessie System Toledo Subdivision. The American Freedom Train would pass thru with Reading 2101 on June 12, 1975 headed from Cincinnati to Archbold, Ohio on the Chessie System Toledo Subdivision heading north. On August 3, 199 Nickel Plate 765 & Pere Marquette 1225 would both together pass thru as a doubleheader deadhead move from Lima, Ohio south down the CSX Toledo Subdivision to Cincinnati, while heading to the 1991 National Railway Historical Society National Convention in Huntington, West Virginia.

New Hamilton stationEdit

By 2022, the city was studying the feasibility of building a new stop for the Cardinal northeast of the old station on the CSX tracks in Symmes Park.[11]


  1. ^ Bernard, Lisa A. (October 31, 2005). "Amtrak Makes Last Stop To-". The Journal News. Hamilton, Ohio. pp. 1, 6. Retrieved January 13, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.  
  2. ^ "Amtrak Beginning New Service for Southwest Ohio Passengers". The News-Journal. Mansfield, Ohio. August 9, 1980. p. 13. Retrieved January 13, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.  
  3. ^ Schafer, Mike, Bob Johnston and Kevin McKinney. All Aboard Amtrak. Piscataway NJ: Railpace Co., 1991
  4. ^ "Baltimore and Ohio, Table 11". Official Guide of the Railways. National Railway Publication Company. 98 (2). July 1965.
  5. ^ Trains magazine, 'Passenger trains operating on the eve of Amtrak' https://ctr.trains.com/~/media/import/files/pdf/f/7/7/passenger_trains_operating_on_the_eve_of_amtrak.pdf
  6. ^ Schafer, Mike; Johnston, Bob; McKinney, Kevin (1991). All Aboard Amtrak. Piscataway NJ: Railpace Co. ISBN 978-0962154140.
  7. ^ Dumond, Chris (September 9, 2004). "Low ridership figures prompt Amtrak to cut back on service to Hamilton, Ohio". Journal-News. Archived from the original on April 7, 2016.
  8. ^ "AMTRAK BLASTS HAMILTON STATION". The Cincinnati Post. February 21, 2005. Archived from the original on April 9, 2016.
  9. ^ Rutledge, Mike (February 20, 2021). "Hamilton, Oxford may have good shots at Cincinnati-to-Chicago Amtrak stations". Journal-News.
  10. ^ Ryle, Jake (Feb 27, 2020). "Hamilton city leaders push back against plans to demolish historic train station". wcpo.com.
  11. ^ Rutledge, Mike (January 28, 2022). "Hamilton planning new Amtrak stations, including possibly near the relocated CSX depot". Journal-News. Retrieved 30 January 2022.

External linksEdit