Blue Bell Columbia City IN

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Notch 8
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Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by Notch 8 » Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:45 pm

On the Eel River RR through Columbia City west of where the Grainery was located on the east side of town there was a company called Blue Bell and is 3-4 stories tall, My question is did this receive rail service ? What did they manufacture ? For what it's worth this building is the 3rd Industrial location that I've seen as of late being converted into housing. Looks to be out of state contractors as well.. Must be getting that Federal Money ?

JW
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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by JW » Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:18 pm

Didn't Blue Bell used to make work clothes,such as bib overalls.

JW

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Howard
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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by Howard » Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:24 pm

Blue Bell produced work clothing, notably Wrangler Jeans. There's an extensive history at https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 123&type=1
The Vandalia Depot was located on the north side of the factory.

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Notch 8
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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by Notch 8 » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:39 pm

Howard wrote:Blue Bell produced work clothing, notably Wrangler Jeans. There's an extensive history at https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 123&type=1
The Vandalia Depot was located on the north side of the factory.
Neat History ! Too bad the work left the Country.

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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by cjberndt » Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:47 am

In 2005, Keith Harris told me that Blue Bell had a spur along the north side when he worked as a PRR hostler in C City in summer-1951, but it was not in use and he didn't know when it stopped being used. The factory was opened in the early-1930s.

The 2-8-0 that Keith tended that summer was kept overnight at the NW corner of Ellsworth and Madison Sts., in the fenced area across Madison St. from Wayne Feeds. PRR brought in hoppers of coal and Keith hand-shoveled it into the 2-8-0's tender. That was nearly the end of steam on the Eel River (ERR) line.

The attached photo was at Ellsworth and Madison looking southwest on the ERR mainline in 2002. Blue Bell is at left, and the ERR depots were in the pine trees at right-center, at the SE corner of Ellsworth and Whitley Sts. Am I right that the pine trees and the little park there were recently demolished?

Craig
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Columbia City Ellsworth lk SW 2002.jpg

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indrr
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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by indrr » Tue Jun 14, 2016 11:07 pm

cjberndt wrote: The attached photo was at Ellsworth and Madison looking southwest on the ERR mainline in 2002. Blue Bell is at left, and the ERR depots were in the pine trees at right-center, at the SE corner of Ellsworth and Whitley Sts. Am I right that the pine trees and the little park there were recently demolished?
Yes, those trees were taken down in the spring to make way for construction of a couple garages as part of the Blue Bell Lofts project.

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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by cjberndt » Wed Jun 15, 2016 7:42 am

I wonder if they found any railroad artifacts when they excavated the site?

The 1976 photo was looking northeast across Madison St. at a PC local at Wayne Feeds.

The 2014 photo was looking northeast through the Eel River depot grounds at Wayne Feeds. The big tree was in the middle of the mainline right-of-way, so I couldn't line up on the centerline. The track here was used as spur to the elevator and Morches sawmill until 1982 when CR abandoned it, so the tree grew after 1982.

Craig
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C City ERR depot grounds 2014.jpg
C City PC Wayne Feeds 1976.jpg

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Notch 8
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Re: Blue Bell Columbia City IN

Post by Notch 8 » Wed Jun 15, 2016 7:19 pm

Sad, that really sucks. for what it's worth it was there probably longer then it should have been...

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