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Woodlawn P&LE RR Station

Woodlawn Pittsburgh & Lake Erie (P&LE) Railroad Station, Aliquippa

The Aliquippa Station, which is located adjacent to the Ohio River Greenway Trail, is a former railway station located 111 Station Street in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, United States. The station was constructed and used by the now defunct Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad. Constructed in 1911, the station has also gone by the name of Woodlawn Station because of the former town of Woodlawn that was merged with Aliquippa in the late 1870s. After the station closed to passengers, it was used for several years by the Jones and Laughlin Steel Company as an office building. Today, the structure sits vacant just outside the city of Aliquippa. The station was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.

 

Aliquippa's Beginnings by Denver Walton

Milestones Vol 17 No 1 Spring 1992

Why is West Aliquippa northeast of Aliquippa? Was Aliquippa named for an Indian Queen? No, despite the fact that every history of the town starts with Queen Aliquippa, who met with George Washington near McKeesport.
 
The Aliquippa story starts with the completion of the P&LE Railroad through Beaver County in 1879. Iidian names were used for stations at rural locations where there were no towns or villages. There were, from the south, Shannopin station (South Heights today), West Economy (connected by ferry to Economy village), Woodlawn station at Woodlawn village, Aliquippa station at Jones Run, Kiasola station at Moon Run. Monaca station at what is now called Colona, and Philipsburg station (today's Monaca).
 
Within a few years an amusement park was built near Aliquippa station, and was called "Aliquippa Park". The park operated for 25 years. A village grew up near the park and in l891, the Russell Shovel factory was located there. In 1894 the village was incorporated and the new borough was called, of course, Aliquippa.
 
Aliquippa's closest neighbors were the village of Woodlawn, about a mile south on Logstown Run, and the village of New Sheffield, about 2 miles west at the headwaters of Logstown Run. (Both of these villages were named for their post offices.)
 
In 1906 the world changed for these villages. The Jones and Laughlin Steel Corporation bought up all the flat riverside land between Aliquippa and Shannopin, including all the land between Woodlawn and the Ohio River. The amusement park site was part of the purchase. (J & L moved the park dance hall to Woodlawn to serve as the main office building.)
 
The new steel plant was called the Aliquippa Works of J & L, with headquarters at Woodlawn. This village began to grow swiftly as houses and stores were built in the valley of Logstown Run. The main street up the valley was called Franklin Avenue. Woodlawn was incorporated in 1908. In 1928, a drive commenced to merge the two boroughs under the name of the much smaller town, Aliquippa. J&L backed this merger, wanting their Aliquippa Works to be located in a town named Aliquippa, not Woodlawn. Voters approved the merger, and the Aliquippa of today was born, almost. One more step was needed. In 1929, the new Aliquippa annexed a large section of Hopewell Township, including New Sheffield village. Now, Aliquippa was complete.
 
The railroad station at Woodlawn had to be changed to Aliquippa, of course, and the former station was changed to West Aliquippa, because it was west of Aliquippa on the east-west, Pittsburgh to Youngstown, P&LE railroad. Soon the old town of Aliquippa was being called West Aliquippa, as it is today. This was the second time this town was named for a railroad station..
 
So much for the Queen Aliquippa legend. There is no record that she ever set foot on the land in the town that bears her name.
 

Historical Images

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