Railroad Avenue

West Side of Railroad Avenue from Chelton Avenue to Bulson Street. Sanborn Map, 1906

As of 1969, Railroad Avenue extended from Kaighn Avenue to Jefferson Street on the west side of the railroad tracks. However, over time, portions of the avenue vanished. The blocks between Atlantic Avenue and Jackson Street were absorbed by Camden Iron & Metal, while the section between Kaighn and Jackson Street disappeared altogether.

In the early 20th century, a rail station was located along the tracks, just south of Van Hook Street. Only one block of houses had an address on Railroad Avenue, situated between Van Hook and Ferry Avenue. Nowadays, if you’re driving east on Van Hook Street, you can turn right just before the railroad tracks, but you can only travel about 100 feet down what was once Railroad Avenue before encountering an earthen barrier that prevents vehicle traffic along the tracks. A similar barrier is present on the Ferry Avenue side.

If you take a walk along the tracks in the 1700 block of Railroad Avenue, you’ll notice that as of February 2004, the only remaining structures are two street light poles with non-functioning light fixtures, a chain-link fence that once surrounded 1743 Railroad Avenue, a small section of brick wall that was once part of that address, and an iron post in the middle of the block that was also once part of a chain-link fence. There are a few depressions in the ground where houses once stood and a couple of mounds that might have been demolition debris, but aside from that, there is no other physical evidence of the homes that used to be there.


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