Knightstown railroad shuts down after 27 years

(WISH Photo/Jason Thompson)

KNIGHTSTOWN, Ind. (WISH)  – After nearly three decades, a staple in Knightstown is closing down.

The Carthage, Knightstown, Shirley Railroad, or CKS, has stopped running after 27 years.

Tom Allison, owner of CKS, was the man behind the big blue engine, which gave pumpkin picking rides in the fall and did old western robbery reenactments in the summer.

“Only a fool operates at a loss on a continuous basis,” Allison said.

Allison says people just don’t have the disposable income they once did.

“We don’t see any light at the end of the tunnel so to speak. We haven’t even found the tunnel yet,” he said.

“There hasn’t been any downside until the last five, six years where you just sit and watch things go out from under you and there isn’t anything you can do about it,” Allison said.

Allison is hanging up his conductor hat and hoping someone with money and vision will buy CKS before August rolls around. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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