While exploring the Harlem Line, I’ve discovered quite a few former stations that are now repurposed, living a second life as restaurants, banks, and other businesses. One station that I visited over the weekend is unique from the rest, in that it is not a commercial space, but a residential space. Not only that, it is for sale – you could have your very own former Harlem Division railroad station to live in. If I had won the Mega Millions I probably would have bought the place, but most unfortunately some folks in Albany ended up winning that. Seriously though, Sharon Station is certainly one of my favorite extant Harlem Division stations, and having been built in 1875, one of the older ones still around and in good condition. Though the station could be called abandoned, as it lies along the route of the Upper Harlem where passenger service ended in 1972, the word has a connotation of disrepair, which hardly fits with the station today. There may no longer be tracks, but the station has been restored and modernized, and will make a great home for whoever ends up purchasing it… and quite the conversation piece!

Early photo of a train at Sharon Station

If you’ve seen my photos of Millerton, the exterior of Sharon Station bears a significant resemblance, with green walls and red doors and detailing. However, the inside is where Sharon stands apart from most other stations I’ve seen. Despite the fact that it might look a little small on the outside, the inside is rather expansive, and from the moment you walk in, there is little doubt that this is a home. The lower floor contains a modern kitchen and dining area, and bordering the door to the former platform is another large room. Today the upper level serves a similar function as in the past, as the main living quarters of the house. These rooms were available for the station agent, and now serve as bedrooms. There are also a few bathrooms upstairs, which definitely beats having to use the outhouse outside – though it has been converted for use as a garden tool shed. Though not an original feature of the station and built much later, there is also a large garage outside as well. Despite being a recent addition, it perfectly matches the color and aesthetic of the station.

Historically, Sharon was never an incredibly important station in terms of passengers. The area surrounding the station was fairly small, with a population of about forty in 1940. The majority of commuters came over from Connecticut, especially from the town of Sharon, which is how the station got its name. More important freight, however, did go through the station, and like many stations on the upper Harlem, it served dairies and shipped milk via train. There was also a connecting track that led to a mine, which shipped iron ore over the Harlem’s tracks. Passenger service finally came to an end in March of 1972, when the line was abandoned north of Dover Plains. Today there are no tracks, but the former line has been paved and turned into a rail trail.


Before I go, I just wanted to post a few more old pictures of Sharon and to give a big thanks to Elyse Harney Real Estate for letting me see this place, Elyse Harney Morris for arranging everything, and to John Panzer for coming out on a Saturday afternoon to take me for a tour. You have my utmost thanks!

7 Responses

  1. James says:

    a favorite milestone when cycling the Harelm Valley Rail Trail. I’ve seen it evolve over the years from seriously neglected to wonderfully rennovated.

  2. Bob says:

    Nice pictures. I always wondered what it looked like inside. Looking at your last picture above where it looks a step away from being condemned, it’s really great to see that it was saved and renovated so nicely. When I was taking pictures of the stations last year this was one of the hardest ones to get since it’s almost impossible to park without trespassing on someone’s property. (I guess it would be a lot easier on a bike, but I was in a car.)

  3. john panzer says:

    emily was my pleasure the photos are excellent I came across a book called history of sharon in photos has some really nice shots of the station

  4. Eugenia says:

    Emily: I so enjoyed your photos and recently took a car trip there (1 1/2 hours from my home in lower Westchester); sadly, it’s gated with tall shrubs to obscure any good views. I realize it’s a residence now but the Frank Lloyd Wright-type residences near the Westchester County Airport are open and more visible for even a passing brief glance. Thanks, however, for enlightening us about our local history.

    • Emily says:

      I think the fence has always been there, but the previous owners never seemed to keep it closed. Last time I drove by, it appears they repainted the outside as well, it is not the original green color that many of the old stations used to be painted.

  5. Dan says:

    Just so you know, the Existing Railroad Stations in New York State site is claiming that Sharon Station was built in 1873:

  6. bob kuczynski/greystone family says:

    my retired aunt owned this station in the early 70’s till her death in the 80’s. she used it for stage theatre and had numerous bands perform in it. the only toilet plumbing was a dual outhouse on the side of the station. it was cold (real cold!) in the winter, and the old wood stove upstairs kept us warm when we visited. downstairs was never heated i remember numerous freight trains coming by and we’d wave to the crew from the station masters bay window upstairs. my cousin tried to repaint and scrape it himself but gave up many times. the outside dental-work was too intricate. the station was sold upon her death and ownership moved on. good to see the old place.

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