Interesting events on the CASO Part IV

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Interesting events on the CASO Part IV
Posted by Miningman on Thursday, March 01, 2018 5:23 PM
1). February 9, 1943 - The 20th Century  makes a trip over the Michigan Central line through St Thomas on Monday night around eleven o'clock at night because of a train wreck at Dunkirk, New York. It had a big electric light on the rear with 20th Century.  The engine on the 20th Century NYC 5254. The Engineers were J. Hardy and William Carter. The firemen were L. Fowler and Mr. Westaway.
2). March 16, 1943 - Oil shipments continue to expand on the local railroads. It has been approved to carry oil in fifty balloons that would allow 10,000 gallons of oil to be carried in boxcars. The B&O have automobile cars that carry four steel tanks.  
3). March 24, 1943 - Engine work has been delayed, engine NYC 5232 had the side-rod snap at Rodney, and NYC 5264 just limped in to St Thomas on Saturday. MCR shop men are striving to keep up with the work on Wabash engines. 
4). June 11, 1943 - Oil being carried in boxcars 
        June 15, 1943 - CASO handles 600 cars of oil per day
        July 7, 1943 - Oil flows to Illinois from the south, Texas and Oklahoma where it is loaded into railway tank cars. Fifty per cent of the tank cars are moved through St Thomas, The NYC, Wabash and the Pere Marquette all have oil trains.
5). August 5, 1943 - Two white Diesels engines create quite a stir on the CASO when they came through St Thomas en route to California from ALCO, for the State Belt Railway of California. Engines numbers are No. 20 and No.21. They were placed at the end of an empty oil tank car train pulled by NYC 2013.  
6). August 12, 1943 - Winston Churchill travels over the TH&B and the CASO on a visit to the United states via Niagara Falls
7). August 17, 1943 - CASO busy with 4500 to 8000 cars a day going through St Thomas on the Canada Division.  
8). November 6, 1943 - One of the 20th Century engines hauls a CASO train. The big monster brings The Empire State Express from Windsor to St Thomas on Saturday. Engine was NYC 5452.
        December 13, 1943 - Another huge streamlined engine, NYC 5426 went over the CASO on Sunday morning pulling the second section of train No. 50, The Empire State Express. It had Disc wheels and was streamlined throughout.
         January 28, 1944 - One of the huge NYC streamlined engines used on the 20th Century and The Empire State Express was seen going west over the Canada Division Friday morning hauling passenger express train No. 35. Just how it got over on this line isn't known, but it is likely to go back east Friday night possibly hauling train No. 44, the Trans-Atlantic Limited. It is of the 5400 type and it was all enclosed with a bullet nosed front end. 
        May 8, 1944 - One of the NYC streamlined engines of the 5400 class came wandering over the Canada Division of the Michigan Central Saturday night and Sunday. It was observed on Sunday morning hauling No. 50, The Empire State Express eastbound from Windsor, through St Thomas to Buffalo. It is understood that it went west to Windsor late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. The bullet nosed engine attracted considerable attention. A number have gone through St Thomas in International Service in recent months, the war being responsible for the engine's wandering about wherever they are needed the most.
9). November 30, 1944 - Thursday morning, when NYC 5429, one of the NYC newest and largest streamlined engines hauled No. 50 eastbound over the Canada Division. It is understood to have hauled No. 51 westbound on Wednesday night, which is the Westbound section of the Empire State Express. Almost half the train Thursday morning was streamlined and after the war it is likely that this type of engine will be assigned regularly to No. 50 and No. 51 through St Thomas and all equipment will be streamlined as well. NYC 5429 has the Empire State Express printed clearly in embossed letters across the bullet shaped nose of the streamliner. The tender of the engine as well as the front part were streamlined.
10). January 5, 1945 - CASO moves record volume because snow south of Lake Erie so a lot of traffic has been moved north. One and a half feet of snow has fallen. The trains of oil are moving steadily.  
    January 6, 1945 - More traffic is said to be moving. A bottleneck still exists on the eastern frontier near Buffalo. NYC is using the longer route via the Suspension Bridge. NYC trains going into Windsor Tunnel have an ice breaker. 
    January 10, 1945 - CASO flyer was held for stranded party. NYC stopped a train at the Kent-Elgin County Line to pick up stranded motorists. 
11). March 10, 1945 - More of the Hudson type passenger engines continue to released from the locomotive shop for International Service. NYC 5367, No. 4643 and No. 5227 have come out of the shops. One of the 5300 went off the tracks in the middle yard in St Thomas.
        April 14, 1945 - NYC 5410 with one of the new large tenders was seen on the CASO Division of the NYC having slipped across the border in International Service. The engine was conspicuous with its big streamlined tank capable of holding 48 tons of coal. The streamliner attached considerable attention along the Division. 
12). May 19, 1945 - NYC trains No. 2 and No. 5 steam engines replace Diesels. ( Well whaddya know)
14. November 17, 1945 - Crack NYC passenger train passes through St Thomas, The 20th Century's were rerouted through St Thomas early this morning, as a result of a wreck at Lydick, Indiana yesterday morning. It was drawn by Diesels.
       November 19, 1945 - More NYC streamliners move over the Canada Division. The Pacemaker, Pathfinder and 20th Century Limited Saturday and Sunday. The Diesel on Saturday night was NYC 4003, and on Saturday night, on the 20th Century Limited. The previous night it was NYC 4002. The Diesel- Electric's went through the Windsor Tunnel.
15). December 17, 1945 - A big blizzard at Buffalo, four feet of snow
        December 18, 1945 - The Pacemaker was among the extra trains on the NYC Canada Division via Suspension Bridge.
        December 20, 1945 - An embargo on traffic at Buffalo
16). January 26, 1946 - During the war 1400 cars of oil passed through St Thomas daily. The oil trains started in 1943, the CASO ran 10 loaded eastbound trains a day. The NYC - because of the tunnel - could not haul explosives but the Pere Marquette and the Wabash could. The NYC ran from two to three troop trains every day.
17). July 5, 1946 - NYC "Pacemaker Service" fast freight draws attention with its striking bright red coloured boxcars. The Canada Division is used for the Detroit cars.
18). July 19, 1946 - A train wreck causes the diversion of NYC trains to the CASO. A serious wreck at Collingwood, near Cleveland blocked all four tracks. All of the NYC's New York to Chicago traffic was routed over the Canada Division through St Thomas. Eleven high ranking NYC passenger trains; the Commodore Vanderbilt, the Pacemaker, The New England States Limited, the 20th Century Limited, the Water-Level Limited in both directions.
19). September 6, 1946 - An immense volume of travel moves over the Canada Division, 80 million passengers a year, in 1944 there were 81, 544, 513 passengers, and in 1945 there were 78, 877, 809 passengers
20). November 6, 1946 - Diesels on the Michigan Central, the new engines run through St Thomas on CD-4, the fast beef train.  Starting November 6th at 12:50am three of the huge three unit Diesels are to be assigned to the Canada Division. The Wolverine trains No. 8 and No. 7 have diesels Harmon, New York to Chicago. The freight Diesels will move between Blue Island, Illinois, near Jolliet, and will pass through the Windsor-Detroit Tunnel to DeWitt, New York. They will operate through the tunnel.
           November 7, 1946 - Diesel freight service is introduced on the Michigan Central Lines through St Thomas without a hitch. The maiden trip of Diesel No. 1600 hauling fast freight CD-4, hauled 61 loaded cars. It arrived at St Thomas at 12:40 am. The westend Engineer was William S. Bell with Brad. Williams his fireman. On the eastend Allan Mellor was the Engineer and W. Turville was the fireman.
Ca-ching Ca -ching , 1400 cars of oil a day during the war, 80 Million passengers a year, all those extras, the CASO earned its keep and filled NYC coffers while it provided a great safety valve for mishaps and overflow along the big 4 track mainline stateside. My own memories start around 1950 or so...I was a young gaffer but do remember the show every day, at least glimpses, much more so in the mid 50's. Have home movies from very early fifties where I would run outside to see the 'coal train' ( a steam loco), and get my dad to pick me up over the shoulders for a better look. The CASO ran along the family farm boundary 15 km from Waterford. Steam disappearing was traumatic, nearby CNR and further CPR was still steam, CPR Electric lines went by too, they were A-OK in my book, but no way the Diesels. 
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Posted by Firelock76 on Thursday, March 01, 2018 8:03 PM

Woweee!  Looks like the CASO was the railfan place to be during the war years, especially if you were looking for some exciting action.

Providing you left your camera at home.  I wouldn't have wanted to be caught dead with one near the place,  there'd be too much explaining to do to some rather humorless men in those years.

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Posted by MidlandMike on Thursday, March 01, 2018 8:48 PM

Diesels running thru the Detroit River Tunnel reminded me that they not only pushed aside the steam locos, but also the tunnel electrics.

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, March 01, 2018 10:21 PM

Excellent point Midland Mike ...another reason to despise them, the electrics were so good looking...very railroady, nothing like them anywhere else. Some would disagree with that but we know they are simply misguided.

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Posted by wanswheel on Friday, March 02, 2018 1:16 AM

Niagara Falls

The Ottawa Journal, Aug. 12, 1943. CP=Canadian Press, BUP=British United Press
QUEBEC, Aug. 12 (CP) Prime Minister Winston Churchill has left Quebec by train for an unannounced destination but military staff work continues undiminished here today as British, American and Canadian officers prepared for his return and the arrival shortly of President Roosevelt for the two leaders' sixth wartime meeting. In the interim Canada virtually is being governed from this old capital of what was once New France.
NIAGARA FALLS, Ont., Aug12. (CP) Prime Minister Churchill and his daughter, Mary, today visited this border tourist centre and then motored across the Lower Arch bridge over the Niagara river to Niagara Falls. N.Y. The Prime Minister and his daughter, who arrived at Victoria Park station in a six-car special Canadian Pacific Railway train, viewed the falls area before motoring across the river. Mrs. Churchill remained in Quebec. They saw the falls, which Mary pronounced “absolutely wonderful," the whirlpool and the monument to General Sir Isaac Brock, killed in a battle during the war of 1812. For the British Prime Minister, it was no new sight, but for Mary the tour was one that kept her chuckling with delight. She bought souvenir postcards at one point. "My lad, I saw the falls before you were born," Mr. Churchill told The Canadian Press when asked if he had been here before. "They have been going a long time.” Later he came over and told me he had seen them first in 1900. Asked if they had changed much, he said he had never seen them so green at the top. Mr. Churchill and his party went to the falls directly from the station where their arrival, news of which had been kept strictly secret, was witnessed by only a scattered crowd. Major General C. F. Constantine, Officer Commanding-Military District No. 2 (Toronto) and Mayor George R. Inglis of Niagara Falls were there to welcome him. A guard of scarlet-coated Royal Canadian Mounted Police was lined up on the platform. Cmdr. C. R. Thompson, Mr. Churchill’s aide, was first out of the train followed by Mary Churchill, a subaltern in Britain's Auxiliary Territorial Service, who was wearing her uniform which has two pips, denoting her rank, on the shoulders.
One of the railwaymen lucky enough to be chosen to make the trip...returned to Ottawa this morning, and it was he who gave out the first-hand information. He said that Mr. Churchill spoke to all the railway employes who happened to be around. Those who had a chance to grab a menu handed it to him for his autograph, and he willingly obliged. Mary, the Prime Minister's attractive daughter, made a big hit with the train help. For quite a long time she stood at the back of the observation car and chatted with the brakeman. They talked about Britain and of Canada, and Mary is reported to have said how delighted she was with her first trip to Canada. She told Mrs. Inglis, wife of the Niagara Falls mayor, that she nearly fell out of bed when she heard she was coming to Niagara Falls. She told the mayor that her mother was rather tired and she confided to The Canadian Press that her father had rested well on the overnight train ride. Miss Churchill chatted for a moment with Lieut. Don Baldwin of Winnipeg, Gen. Constantine's aide. She explained to him that the two red patches at the top of her sleeve denoted her connection  with an anti-aircraft battery. A few moments later Mr. Churchill made his appearance and the small crowd cheered. Wearing a grey fedora, a light grey summer suit with cuffs on the trousers, he had the inevitable cigar in his mouth and carried a cane. As he descended the steps of the railway car, he gave the familiar V sign. After the welcome by Mayor Inglis, the party followed by the press cars drove through beautiful green Queen Victoria park to Table Rock House at the edge of the Horseshoe Falls. A hastily-selected bouquet  of gladioli was presented to the Prime Minister's daughter by Mrs. Charlotte Barton, hostess at the Park Commission restaurant. Mrs. Barton accompanied the party on the trip along with Maxim T. Grey, general manager of the Parks Commission. Between gasps of delight at the sight of the wild green water tumbling over the precipice, Mary told Mrs. Barton the flowers were "perfectly lovely." Niagara Falls as a whole apparently unaware of the distinguished visitors, the party drove from the falls beneath, the Rainbow Bridge and along the river road to the whirlpool. Hardly anyone stood along the roadside to watch. From the whirlpool they went to Queenston Heights where the party saw from the veranda of Queenston Heights restaurant the broad vista of the Niagara moving towards Lake Ontario. Scarcely a glance did Mr. Churchill cast at the towering shaft of Brock's monument commemorating General Sir Isaac Brock, who was killed trying to storm Queenston Heights in the war of 1812. He told someone it was no stranger to him and when asked if he would like to climb the 175 steps to the top replied: "Wouldn't be good for me.” Like any tourist Mary selected a group of souvenir postcards in the restaurant, but James Brown, the man in charge of the card counter, would not let her pay. The Prime Minister bent down and picked up a raignonette from a big bed of the flowers at the entrance to the restaurant as the party left. The motorcade swung away from the restaurant and back up the river road to the Lower Arch bridge which Mr. Churchill and his party crossed at 9.45 a.m. Later the special train also was taken across the river to Niagara Falls, N.Y.
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y., Aug. 12. (BUP) As Prime Minister Churchill's train was pulling out of the Suspension Bridge station here, Eddie Brady, Negro baggage handler, ran after the train shouting: "Mr. Churchill, please, one of your cigars." Mr. Churchill took the cigar he was smoking from his mouth; looked at it regretfully and then, apparently changing his mind, reached in his pocket and tossed his cigar case to the baggage handler. The cigar Mr. Churchill was smoking was his second since arriving at Niagara Falls, Ont. this morning. With his famous cigar tilted and alight, Mr. Churchill stepped off his special train from Quebec at 8:28 a.m. Fresh from the opening two days of the Quebec conference, Mr. Churchill beamed on the people on the platform and walked between line of scarlet-coated Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The comparatively small crowd who had heard rumors of a famous arrival cheered "Winnie", who threw his cigar under the train's wheels as he greeted them. The party proceeded to tour the district, leaving the station in cars. On the brink of the giant falls the cars stopped, Mr. Churchill got out, pulled another cigar from his pocket and lit it, which was something of an achievement with the wind that was blowing.
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Posted by wanswheel on Friday, March 02, 2018 2:39 AM
Churchill’s trip to Niagara was the long way to FDR’s in Hyde Park. I believe he returned to Quebec via White River Junction. In 1974, my father wrote this about his father: My father, Joseph A., retired with the distinction of having been the only man in engine service on the Central Vermont who had never once in his career had to "give up his engine on the road." He was taken out of his regular turn to run Winston Churchill's special train to the Quebec Conference during World War II, handling the train from White River Jct. to Montreal, because of his reputation as a "smooth man with the throttle and brakes."
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Posted by Miningman on Friday, March 02, 2018 11:28 AM

Wholly Mollee...your Grandfather was the number 1 Engineer on the CV and took Winston Churchills train into Quebec City...Luv how these articles and postings lead to such small degrees of separation. 

You must be beaming!


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