Saratoga, Mount McGregor and Lake George Railroad

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Electric locomotive Ampère, built by Leo Daft and tested on the Saratoga, Mount McGregor and Lake George Railroad in 1883.

The Saratoga, Mount McGregor and Lake George Railroad was a railroad leading from North Broadway in Saratoga Springs, New York, USA, controlled by the financier Joseph William Drexel. The railroad ran for approximately 12 miles (19 km) through the towns of Saratoga Springs, Wilton, Moreau and Corinth to the top of Mount McGregor.

Construction was begun on March 17, 1882, and was completed on July 17 the same year, for the purpose of conveying building materials and later passengers to the Hotel Balmoral on the top of Mt. McGregor; the railroad was originally built to 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge, but at some point after the line's completion and before November 1883, it was converted to 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge.

In November 1883, Leo Daft tested the electric locomotive Ampere[1] generating 12 horsepower (25 according to some sources) along the line; this locomotive, which pulled a 10-ton load up a 1.5 percent grade in 11 minutes, has been called "the first standard gauge electric locomotive to be built in the country".[2]

In December 1897, the hotel at the top of the mountain burned. After foreclosure proceedings, the hotel and railroad property were sold in auction on March 6, 1893. In 1913, a sanitorium was constructed, it went through different purposes until it became Mount McGregor Correctional Facility.


  1. ^ Steuart, W. M. (1905). Street and Electric Railways. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 162.
  2. ^ Bianculli, Anthony J. (2008). Iron Rails in the Garden State. Indiana University Press. p. 81. ISBN 978-0-253-35174-6.