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Railway Historian
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Picture of Larry Buchan
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In answer to Steve's Locomotive Clock question on his Seth Thomas Illinois Central locomotive clock, here is some photos of one's I have collected. My nickel plated Seth Thomas has two winding arbors.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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Seth Thomas nickel plated locomotive clock case back

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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In this photo we see a nickel plated locomotive clock mounted above the air pressure gauge, the text refers to the crew, the locomotive engineer Brother B. Casey, his fireman F.D. Beard, and Master Mechanic Younger. This Locomotive was assigned to Brother Casey in the days before the railroads stopped this practice completely. You can see other personalized touches such as the nickel plated lanterns for illumination, and the heart-shaped mirror above the locomotive lubricator's. Other items of a personal nature were often seen on a locomotives exterior including antlers in the front by the headlight, and other such trophies. In the early days of railroading locomotives were assigned to engine crews, locomotive engineer and fireman, and cabooses to ground crews, conductors and brakemen. The railroads found that it was more economical to pool locomotives, that is to say any available locomotive could be dispatched with whatever engine crew was available. The practice of pooled cabooses did not take place on my railway the Canadian Pacific until the late 1960s. This photo was submitted to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers Journal in the early 1900s.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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A Brass Seth Thomas locomotive clock from the Montana Railroad (The Jawbone)

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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Montana Railroad appeared first in Lewistown, Montana on December 15, 1897. Richard A. Harlow organized the Montana Railroad on May 26, 1895 to run from Lombard on the Missouri River where it connected with the Northern Pacific running approximately 56 miles to Leadboro (Leadborough) in the Castle Mountains which was in the midst of a silver boom, the Depression of 1893 brought to an end of profitable mining. So in the early years the Montana Railroad rarely if ever made a profit, so when Mr. Harlow decided in 1899 to extend his rails into the Musselshell Valley and eventually to Lewistown he had to use much persuasion or "jawboning" to achieve financing. Hence the moniker "The Jawbone" came to be associated with the Montana Railroad. Tracks Reached Marino in June of 1900. A new town was formed here and rail yards were constructed which were renaming Harlow after the Montana Railroads builder, the name was changed to Harlowton. The Montana Railroad operated over 157 miles of tracks which was incorporated into the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul, and Pacific Railway in 1908.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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Another customized locomotive cab, with locomotive clock showing behind oil lantern, note frame for holding train orders mounted below steam pressure gauge. The fireman is doing a good job today and has his fire perfect, as the needle on the steam gauge is right on the "pin" a term used by steam crews to indicate the boiler pressure is just right, any lower to the left and you can run out of pressure, and any higher to the right will cause the pressure relief valve to "pop" which is a no-no.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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Stay tuned for a further post on John J. McGrane's Locomotive Clock which I have been researching for over 26 years.
 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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Larry
Every now & then I run across this post & wonder did you ever post anything on the John J. McGrane Locomotive Clock?

You know me, always want to know more about a name.

Tom
 
Posts: 5107 | Location: New Mexico in the USA | Registered: January 27, 2007
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Hello Tom:

It still a project on the back burner, Sheila Gilbert has helped me considerably with my research and soon as I finish compiling it, I will post it along with some pictures of the
locomotive clock.

Larry
 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
posted
Hi, before I post photos etc. I hope this particular page and contributors are still active,especially regarding the Mcgrane locomotive clock.
Regards,
Bruce
 
Posts: 9 | Location: California in the USA | Registered: February 02, 2020
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Hello clock collectors:

I see that there a posting looking for some information on the McGrain's Locomotive Clock, I Have One and I Will Try To Post some information on the history of these bonds. I am in the South Health Campus Hospital Calgary, Alberta. I Had My Surgery on January 29, Talking about being in the right place at the right time, a day after my surgery I came down with double pnuemonia, it was a close call, but I am a fighter. I have my notebook computer and all the information I need, I will have to resize some of information and will be posting in during the week, my release date is n back March 10

Larry Buchan
 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
IHC Member 665
posted
Larry, wishing you a good recovery. Doing the clock research will greatly assist with that, I am sure. Looking forward to reading.
 
Posts: 202 | Location: East Melbourne, Victoria, Australia | Registered: December 31, 2005
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Larry,

Lindell and I wish you a speedy recovery!

Smile
 
Posts: 4834 | Location: Northern Ohio in the U.S.A. | Registered: December 04, 2002
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On November 16 1978 I started my Enginemen's Training Program, we took two weeks of Rulebook Training on the Unified Code of Operating Rules Revision of 1962, by a gentleman named Lloyd Snowden, he was a locomotive engineer from Kamloops, British Colombia. The CPR had converted a baggage coach into a classroom it was renumbered to Car 54 (Car 54 where are you?) Now CPR's Rules Instructors were usually Train Dispatchers, from 1973 I had Bernie Kershaw who did rules examinations the classroom was a CPR passenger coach made into a classroom, it was Car 49. Now Lloyd taught us the rules from a locomotive engineers perspective. On December 2, 1978, we wrote a test on what we had learned, and I passed the exam okay. On December 3 we then started two weeks of Mechanical Training our instructor was a locomotive engineer from Vancouver named Des Dorche, and a Diesel Shop Forman named Alfred Strickland. We finished our classes on December 17, 1978 and I passed the exam we had to write. We then started 14 days of training with locomotive engineers who worked in the Alyth yard at Calgary there was 60 assignments that we could choose from. I finished my trips in the yard on a December 24 I had some time off over the Christmas holidays, and two weeks annual vacation in January on so I was assigned to work the Brooks Subdivision that runs east of Alyth yard 172 miles to Medicine Hat, Alberta. This was because I had worked the Brooks Subdivision as a brakeman back in the winter of 1973-74. I made my first trip with Walter Guse as my locomotive engineer instructor we were called at 19:15 January 15th for train No. 952 we had the 5653 and the 5555 for power these were 3000 hp General Motors Electro Motive Division locomotives. Classed as SD-40-2 and a SD-40. We were called out of Alyth at 19:15 I met Walter at the locomotive engineers booking out room in the Alyth diesel shop, he let me run the locomotives off of shop track, and we coupled onto our train in P-6 the Carmen did a brake test, and we went eastward to Ogden Mile 172, I ran the train to Cassels that was halfway to Medicine Hat, I then watched how Walter ran the train we were off duty at 00:30 we had a night's rest Walter went to the engineers bunkhouse, and I slept in the Cecil Hotel that was across from the CPR Station and around the corner on North Railway Street, I had a good sleep and we were called for Train No. 967 at 06:55 there was a coffee shop on the ground floor where I had a good breakfast. I took a photograph from my room, you can see the Medicine Hat Station. On the right side of the photo is the Assiniboia Hotel I stayed there in the winter of 1973 1974 when I was working as a Brakeman

I qualified as a Locomotive Engineer on the Canadian Pacific Railway making a trip to Fort Macleod, on the way freight. We left Alyth yard on a Friday we had a train crew from Lethbridge, we went south to Aldersyde mile 31.9 it was a junction between the Macleod Subdivision, and Aldersyde Subdivision that ran South to Lethbridge, the usual procedure was the locomotive engineer, would dead head home on a Greyhound Bus. The operator at Fort Macleod said to George Benning, my instructor I am sorry but they are going to load cattle into stock cars tomorrow at Staveley. George said to me there is no reason for you to stay so I got a ticket for the Greyhound bus, we went over one of the hotel's, and drank a couple of beers. I missed the bus, and I said to George, it looks like I will be going to Staveley with you tomorrow. Now Staveley was at mile 70.8, and Fort Macleod, was at mile 107.3, Aldersyde was at mile 31.9 this was a junction between the Fort Macleod Subdivision, and the Aldersyde Subdivision that ran South to Lethbridge.

When I visited New York City in 1982, I went to a model train store, and found a couple of old Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers Journal's one was from 1895. It had interesting advertisement from The Brotherhood's Jeweler for McGrane's Locomotive Clock, Price $12 John J McGrane. Attending watch and clock shows I was always on the lookout for one of these clocks. In 1993 I bought a book called Rails Across America in one section about Railways and Timekeeping in it was in a Nickle Case McGrane's Locomotive Clock missing its second hand, it was in the Smithsonian Museum, and it was the only example I had ever seen. I had my eBay search for one, and one came out in the Spring of 2001, I bid on it and got it for $500. I was in the rehabilitation ward of the Foothills Hospital on November 2 which was 20 years old ago yesterday I was on a bus tour to Deadwood, South Dakota on our return trip the bus driver went off the edge of the highway in North Dakota he tried to correct but ended up flipping the bus on its roof in a farmers field. One poor women ended up underneath the bus she passed away in the Foothills Hospital in February 2001. I was made a quadriplegic, my wife Anita, and my mother-in-law Hillma went out the window on the other side of the bus, my wife broke her pelvis, my mother-in-law was sleeping and got a blackeye and a few other bumbs.

Larry

I will post more photos tomorrow.

Photos:

1.) Walter Guse on the CPR's Dayliner this train ran from Calgary to South Edmonton.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
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2.) On February 16, 1980 I made my first solo trip to South Edmonton on CPR's Dayliner 9022, I arrived six minutes late, I took this photo you can see my overnight bag on the platform.

 
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
IHC Member 2030
posted
Larry
Your post are a wonderful telling of life on the rails, and I will relish enjoying them forever.
Quick story, in 1980, as a trainee for the Norfolk & western rwy, rode/drove an empty coal train from Roanoke va to bluefield West Virginia and it was an unforgettable trip through mountain and tunnels that will stay in my memories forever.
Mike
 
Posts: 1103 | Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia in the USA | Registered: February 08, 2015
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