Reminders of the Milwaukee & Northern - Neenah Branch

The M&N laid approximately 4,000 feet (eight tenths of a mile) of track from Menasha, Wis., to Neenah, Wis., the Neenah Branch, in 1881. The Neenah Branch is still in use, currently operated by the Canadian National (CN).

By the mid-1880s, the Menasha, Appleton and Neenah Branches were collectively referred to as the Appleton Branch on timetables. The depot at Neenah was Milepost 16 on the Appleton Branch.

Looking northeast along the CN, originally M&N, rails from Tayco St. at Menasha, Wis., on 2 May 2020. As this track curves toward the east it forms the south leg of the wye. The first turnout is for the west leg of the wye. The second turnout is for a siding on the west leg of the wye. The east leg of the wye is no longer extant. The wye-area was once known as West Menasha Junction, where the Menasha Branch terminated, the Appleton and Neenah Branches began, and the original WC connected. Photograph by Tom Bruss.

A CN local, led by Illinois Central IC 3138, crosses the Fox River Navigation Canal via a neat, old swing bridge on the M&N Neenah Branch at Menasha, Wis., on 18 November2020. The lead tank car is straddling one of four diamonds which remain on this mostly industrial island, formed when the canal was excavated ca. 1856 (when the lock was completed). The local was headed for Hilbert, but for some reason, they left the rear half of their train at W. North Water St. at Neenah. Here they taking the front half to the yard at Menasha. They will soon head back to pick up the rear half and return to the yard at Menasha before continuing on their way. Simply Incredible Foods, 198 River St., stands in the background. They purchased the defunct Menasha Municipal Utilities plant in June of 2014. Photograph by Tom Bruss.

Illinois Central IC 3138 passes our depot and approaches W. Forest Ave. as it heads southwest via the M&N Neenah Branch at Neenah, Wis., 18 November 2020. This CN local was headed for Hilbert, but for some reason, they left the rear half of their train at W. North Water St. at Neenah. They took the front half to the yard at Menasha. They are now returning to pick up the rear half and head back to the yard at Menasha before continuing on their way. The depot was built by the M&N in 1882 and is home to the Milwaukee & Northern Railway Historical Society, a.k.a. the Neenah-Menasha Model Railroad Club. Photograph by Tom Bruss.

A CN local, led by Illinois Central IC 3138, crosses W. Forest Ave. and approaches the former M&N depot as it heads northeast via the former Neenah Branch at Neenah, Wis., on 18 November 2020. The local was headed for Hilbert, but for some reason, they left the rear half of their train at W. North Water St. at Neenah. They took the front half to the yard at Menasha. They have now picked up the rear half and will now head back to the yard at Menasha before continuing on their way. The depot was built by M&N in 1882 and is home to the Milwaukee & Northern Railway Historical Society, a.k.a. the Neenah-Menasha Model Railroad Club. Photograph by Tom Bruss.

A CN local passes the former M&N depot and crosses High St. as it heads northeast via the former Neenah Branch at Neenah, Wis., on 18 November 2020. The local was headed for Hilbert, but for some reason, they left the rear half of their train at W. North Water St. at Neenah. They took the front half to the yard at Menasha. They have now picked up the rear half and will now head back to the yard at Menasha before continuing on their way. The depot was built by M&N in 1882 and is home to the Milwaukee & Northern Railway Historical Society, a.k.a. the Neenah-Menasha Model Railroad Club. Photograph by Tom Bruss.