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IHC Member 1541
Picture of Lorne Wasylishen
posted
End of the Line

This Canadian documentary short offers a nostalgic look at the steam locomotive as it passes from reality to history. In its heyday, the big smoke-belching steam engine seemed immortal. Now, powerful and efficient diesels are pushing the old coal-burning locomotives to the sidelines, and the lonely echo of their whistles may soon be a thing of the past.
 
Posts: 2093 | Location: British Columbia in Canada | Registered: March 02, 2011
IHC Vice President
Pitfalls Moderator
IHC Life Member
Picture of Edward L. Parsons, Jr.
posted
Nice video Lorne, it took a while to run on my somewhat slow internet, but it was worth the wait.

i'm old enough to remember the last runs of coal-burning steam locomotives on the Maine Central and Boston & Maine lines. We had coaling, watering and maintenance shops as well as a passenger and freight depot in my home town of Brunswick.


Maine Central Locomotive No. 470

 
Posts: 6696 | Location: Southwestern Pennsylvania, USA | Registered: April 19, 2004
posted
Road the train with my mother a good bit as a child in the early 50's. So never experienced any coal fired units first hand...put I still remember thelong rides and being hungry (because we could not afford the prices on the train or at the stations. Lived in southern Illinois; first major stop was St. Louis, often changed trains there heading south to Wichita Kansas or Longview Texas to see Aunts and Uncles. It was often very cold on board I remember...but at least there were no security searches. But I was a poor small town boy (age 4-10) and thought it was a great adventure.


Gary
 
Posts: 586 | Location: Bastrop, Texas in the USA | Registered: January 22, 2011
IHC Vice President
Pitfalls Moderator
IHC Life Member
Picture of Edward L. Parsons, Jr.
posted
Speaking of adventure on the train, I am reminded of my grandfather's 1904 trip to attend the World's Fair in St. Louis. He and 3 of his farmer buddies left their wives in charge of their farms and set out on the long railroad trip, the first time any of them had ever traveled beyond New England.

In 1904 there were no airlines, no superhighways and hardly any automobiles. The only practical way to do long distance overland travel was by rail. What you see in old movies is the first class "Pullman" mode of rail travel, but poor farmers couldn't afford that, so they traveled in the decidedly less glamorous "coach" mode, as my grandfather and his companions did. This meant they slept in their seats in their clothes . . . no Pullman berths!

They couldn't afford dining car prices so they bought sandwiches & coffee from vendors on the platforms at the many stops the train made. They had to stop for water about every 60 miles, less often for coal. It took a total of six trains to get from Portland, Maine to St. Louis, Missouri.

Using a St. Louis newspaper & the telegraph, they made arrangements to stay at a boarding house near the fairgrounds, where they also got a brown bag lunch to take to the fair each day.

This trip was the adventure of my grandfather's life.


Best Regards,

Ed
 
Posts: 6696 | Location: Southwestern Pennsylvania, USA | Registered: April 19, 2004
IHC Member 1541
Picture of Lorne Wasylishen
posted
Ed and Gary,
Those are both adventures I would like to have experienced. I am reluctant to admit that although I was a Locomotive Engineer for 36 years I have never ridden on or even seen a real working steam locomotive. Perhaps one day.
 
Posts: 2093 | Location: British Columbia in Canada | Registered: March 02, 2011
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