From 1904 to 1925, the Manchester, Dorset & Granville Railroad line, affectionately known as the “Mud, Dirt & Gravel” moved marble from the quarries in Dorset to Manchester Depot. After being cut and polished at the finishing mill, blocks of marble left Manchester on another train headed to New York City to build massive structures such as the New York Public Library. Passengers were added later but plans to extend the railroad line through downtown Dorset and on to Granville, NY never actually happened and the rails were pulled up in 1934.
The rail bed remained, overgrown and forgotten until a passionate group of local residents purchased a section just north of Manchester Center. They’ve been working to transform this former rail bed into a multi-use path.
From historic past to present, a more complete history of the marble rail trail, including old railroad photos and current aerial views can be seen at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d78q3OQLzBM
The pathway is PRIVATELY owned and borders PRIVATE property. If you use the path by foot, bike, or cross country skis, please respect people’s land and privacy. STAY ON THE PATH. Don’t feed or pet the horses. Take out what you bring in and keep your dog on a leash. Do not use the trail after dusk.
The photos below show the progression of this 1.6 mile section of the trail as it has been cleared.