Penn Central E8A No. 4303 with Train No. 31, the combined Spirit of St. Louis - Cincinnati Limited, at Altoona, PA on February 22, 1969. Click to enlarge.

(Photo by Roger Puta, railfan 44, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)



The Cincinnati Limited was a named train of the Pennsylvania Railroad; the train traveled from New York City's Pennsylvania Station to the Cincinnati Union Terminal. It was a rival to New York Central's Ohio State Limited. The Cincinnati Limited carried connecting sleeping cars to the Louisville and Nashville Railroad's Cincinnati to New Orleans Pan American. By the mid-1950s, the sleeper extension on L&N lines ended at Memphis instead of New Orleans.

The train was sustained into the era of the Penn Central, the successor of the Pennsylvania Railroad. Both the Cincinnati Limited and the Pan American ended service on April 30, 1971, as passenger trains moved over to Amtrak.


Stations west of Harrisburg

The train ran at limited stations from Pittsburgh to Columbus, in comparison to the PRR's Penn Texas which bypassed most of them.

Lewistown station (westbound only)
Altoona station
Pittsburgh Union Station
Steubenville (eastbound only)
Columbus Union Station
Xenia (westbound only)
Winton Place
Cincinnati Union Terminal



Service type: Inter-city rail
Status: Discontinued
Locale: Midwestern United States; Mid-Atlantic United States
First service: 1920
Last service: 1971
Former operators: Pennsylvania Railroad; Penn Central (1968-1971)
Route Termini New York, New York - Penn Station / Cincinnati, Ohio - Cincinnati Union Terminal
Distance traveled: 755.1 miles (1,215.2 km)
Service frequency: Daily
Train numbers: 41 (westbound); 40 (eastbound)
On-board services
Seating arrangements: Reclining seat coaches
Sleeping arrangements: Sections, Roomettes and double bedrooms (1954)
Catering facilities: Dining car, Lounge car, Bar lounge car
Observation facilities: Observation car
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+1⁄2 in)