“Out of Place”
This has to be one of my craziest finds while urban exploring around town that I found a few years ago. This building is the old Pennsylvania Railroad YMCA, located about 5 miles from my house, in Ohio, not Pennsylvania. This place closed when I was 3 years old. The railroad YMCA housed workers from the railroad, temporary and permanent since the 1920s. How this foreign car ended up in the halls of this YMCA is beyond me because there were no garage doors, I would love to know the story behind it…at least I had the opportunity to shoot it (twice a couple of years apart) before it was raised about 4 years ago.
From the Canton Repository- Since almost no mainline trains make a round trip in one day, it’s necessary that the engineers, firemen, conductors, brakemen, and others have two homes, one on each end of the line. In many cases, the second ‘home’ was a Railroad YMCA. The Railroad YMCA in Canton had a little under 200 rooms according to Tim Shetzer, chief executive officer of YMCA of Central Stark County. There are 118 single rooms in the large dormitory, of which 60 are reserved for permanent residents and 58 are filled by transients, the 1941 article said while the Railroad YMCA still was operating. Many times one room is occupied by three men in 24 hours, and each full day an average of 225 men sleep in the dormitory. It doesn’t take a mathematician to figure that in the hasty operation of trains in the 1940s, the railroad had only eight hours off between shifts. But there are times when trainmen from other cities stay here for longer periods, said the 1941 article. Then they make the YMCA lobby their headquarters when they’re not sleeping, playing cards, checkers or pool and swapping yarns with fellow workers.
Thanks for stopping!