Telling the story of 200 years  of White Mountain History
                      Bartlett and Albany RR





The village of Bartlett, New Hampshire, was once the center of railroad activity by the Maine Central Railroad in the eastern White Mountains. Bartlett was also the location of a large sawmill and a logging railroad which made tracks over Bear Notch and down into the Swift River valley. The Bartlett Land and Lumber Company was formed in the early 1870s by lumbermen from Portland, Maine who also accumulated about forty thousand acres of timberland.

Bartlett and Albany Railroad

                          Click on map for a larger image 

                              Lumber Mill in Bartlett

As the early loggers had to reach further up the slopes of Bear Mountain the need of a logging railroad became evident. The logging rails had their beginning in 1887 with the granting of a charter for the Bartlett and Albany Railroad to construct southerly from Bartlett to the Swift River. About thirteen miles of roadbed were laid, culminating at the settlement of Passaconaway on the Swift River.


The Bartlett and Albany Railroad was a one-locomotive operation, a Portland mogul purchased in 1887. One trip per day was all the engine could handle, hauling supplies out to the logging camps and surmounting Bear Notch with a return load of log cars. And there was always the chore of shifting cars in the Bartlett mill yard every afternoon.


    The engine on the far right is the Bartlett and Albany 2-6-0, 
   which was built by the Portland Co.  It's pictured at the Maine 
  Central roundhouse in Bartlett, which still stands, although in poor

Operations of the Bartlett sawmill began to suffer in the early 1890s, and the logging railroad ceased operation about 1894. Mill operations continued for a while with purchased logs but a court-ordered auction brought a halt to all industrial activity in 1904. A portion of the former roadbed of the logging railroad is located along the site of the present-day Bear Notch highway. 

   Bartlett Village1895-1915   Click on map for larger image

          Bill Gove's Composite Logging Railroad Map

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