Cambridge, Ohio Railroad Tunnel

Cambridge, Ohio Railroad Tunnel

Railroad Tunnel Covered Bridge Fire Cambridge Ohio 1868

On the west side of Cambridge, Ohio in the industrial section of town you’ll find the Columbus & Ohio River Railroad Tunnel and a Bridge on the east side of the tunnel spanning Wills Creek.

The main line was formerly part of the Pennsylvania Railroads “Panhandle”, and was acquired from Conrail in 1992.

I wasn’t able to find a specific date on when the tunnel was made but my research shows that it may have been built by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad who also built a covered bridge in 1868 on the east side of the tunnel crossing Wills Creek, which is most likely when the tunnel was built if not before. The bridge was lost in a fire in 1877 probably due to hot cinders from a steam locomotive. The tunnel is about 560 feet long, lined with brick and straight. The tunnel was rebuilt in 1913 likely due to the 1913 Flood which may have destroyed the bridge standing at that time. Above the tunnel sits U.S. Route 22/40. Although if you were just passing thru town, you would never guess a railroad tunnel was just under your feet.

Today an occasional train comes in from Zanesville to service several factories on the east and south sides of Cambridge, Ohio, before heading back to Zanesville. I made two visits to the tunnel in November 2021 and November 2023 but never saw a train on these tracks.

GPS Location: 40º01’28.7″N 81º36’18.1″W