• Photo of Lemon House, Level #6, and Engine House on a beautiful summer day.

    Allegheny Portage Railroad

    National Historic Site Pennsylvania

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  • Road Closure

    Please be aware that part of the public area loop has been closed until further notice as the park starts preparatory efforts for this summer's paving project on the Picnic Area Road.

Mountains

The Portage Railroad traversed the Allegheny Mountains between Hollidaysburg and Johnstown, Pennsylvania, connecting the Eastern and Western Divisiions of the Pennsylvania Mainline Canal. The mountains represented a formidable obstacle in early transportation routes. The inclines and planes of the Allegheny Portage Railroad provided a unique engineering solution for transporting the canal boats across the mountains.

Allegheny Portage Railroad NHS is located in Blair and Cambria Counties at the junction of the Appalachian Plateaus and Ridge and Valley Provinces in southwestern Pennsylvania. This area is characterized by high, rounded ridges and valleys divided by streams. The park extends linearly from the southeast facing escarpment that forms the eastern edge of the plateau region, known as the Allegheny Front, to the summit of the Cresson Ridge in the Allegheny Mountains.

Did You Know?

Railroad track attached to a 'sleeper'

When the Portage Railroad opened on March 18, 1834, it was a single track line. The rule was when 2 drivers met the one who had passed the center post had the right to go on. The other driver had to back up. Some sat nose to nose until a magistrate determined who got to the center first.