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  • Writer's pictureLawrence Lore

Birds Station, IL

After an earlier published post about early news of the village of Birds we received some photos of Birds that we did not have in our collection from Kenneth Bird.  His grandfather Lafayette Bird and his father William Bird were both born in Birds. Our thanks to Ken for this photo and the history.

Train Time at Birds IL circa 1880s

The town of Birds, in Lawrence County Illinois, was founded in 1878 when John Bird Jr. (1817-1903) son of John Bird (1785-1850) donated land for the Wabash St. Louis and Pacific Railroad including a lot for the depot. The railroad was merged into the Cleveland, Cincinnati, St. Louis and Chicago Railroad in 1889 (Big 4) and in the early 20th Century was acquired by the New York Central Railroad. The line hosted a passenger train named the Egyptian that featured a Pullman car to and from Chicago to Cairo, IL. In 1915 the old depot was replaced with a more modern building. Passenger service ended in 1957 and in 1980 the portions of the Danville line to Cairo were abandoned, including the line through Birds. The village of Birds was itself unincorporated in 1997 when a flood decimated what was left of the town.


Locomotive 7102 was built by Alco’s Schenectady Works in September 1888 as Indianapolis & St. Louis #114. She became CCC & St L #114, Class B-5, when the Wabash St. Louis & Pacific was consolidated into the Big Four; it became CCC & St L #7102, Class C-69, as part of the general renumbering and reclassification of all NYC Lines locomotives in 1905. Following a May 1923 rebuilding, she was finally retired and scrapped in November 1930.

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