The LAST day of Steam on the CPR

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The LAST day of Steam on the CPR
Posted by Miningman on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 10:25 PM

Apr.30, 1960. CNR and CPR agreed to end all steam operations Canada wide. Things had been winding down for years with a very few outposts holding on. We are in Port McNicoll on the very last steam operation in regular service on Apr.30, 1960. 

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Posted by Miningman on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 10:26 PM

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Posted by Miningman on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 10:30 PM

This one for NDG.

100% CPR...the last run of the last of steam. 

NDG
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Posted by NDG on Tuesday, April 04, 2017 11:31 PM

Miningman

This one for NDG.

100% CPR...the last run of the last of steam. 

 

 

In Montreal in June 1960 CPR was still using several steam engines within the Terminals on Transfers, Commuters  and such, but, seemingly not on Thru Freights to another Objective Terminal,

 
The Transfers usually left in a bunch around 1600, On Block, and we'd feast on them, weekdaily, a WHOLE Summer of steam to go.
 
Well, they went. Come July, no more steam AT ALL!
 
We were stunned. We lost streetcars in Sept. 1959, but, we'd ALWAYS have steam.
 
Wrong.
 
In the fall of 1960 CPR did boiler work at the Glen/Westmount, and several steam engines were sent over to supply steam heat to coaches in the interim in lieu of the steam plant.
 
You could hear them shuffling thru the night, rods clanking as all windows open in the house in hot, humid July
 
The steam plant made Yard Air, using, get THIS! TWO 2 Single-Stage steam locomotive Westinghouse air pumps c. 1910, and we'd gawp at them, being at eye-level for maintenance. Drippage  ( French Word for Condensate ) into little tinsmithed trays plumbed into a drain in floor.
 
The turntable and pit went around that time.
 
In Feb. 1961 we could hear a steam whistle and bell at the end of the street, and a light locomotive drifted by, puffs of steam from the Stoker Exhaust behind the coal bunker, going to the Glen. That the last true steam movement I saw on CP.
 

Mais?

 

FWIW.

 I have seem movie footage of a Royal Hudson Fan Trip on the above trestle, I thought they would be Prohibited.

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Posted by wanswheel on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 9:39 AM

Excerpt from Canadian Rail, Nov.-Dec. 2010

http://www.exporail.org/can_rail/Canadian%20Rail_no539_2010.pdf

As 1960 dawned, the last stand of CPR’s steam operations was largely concentrated in the Montreal area on commuter and transfer freight services. A few other pockets of steam operation persisted in southern Ontario, New Brunswick, Ontario and Manitoba. Steam power operated on the Quebec Central Railway, the Farnham, Sherbrooke and Megantic yards and on the Drummondville Subdivision wayfreight between Farnham and Drummondville as late as March 1960. The famous “International” mixed train 517 between Brownville Junction, Maine and Megantic, Quebec made its last run with steam on April 8,1960 powered by P1 class 2-8-2 5107. The following day, the 5107 handled the wayfreight from Megantic to Sherbrooke and ran on to Montreal later that night on train 913. The 3514, a 2-8-0, remained at Megantic as a stationary boiler until the fall of 1960.

 

Fires were dropped on Prairie Region branch line steam power and yard engines by the first quarter of 1960 as hordes of GP9’s and SW1200RS’s arrived from General Motors Diesel plant in London, Ontario.

 

CPR steam operations in the Maritimes came to an end in April 1960. G2 4-6-2 2626 handled train 84 from Aroostook on April 2,1960. In mid April 1960, A1e 4-4-0 29 made a surprising return to service on the Norton-Chipman branch when she replaced ailing CLC dieselhydraulic 22. D10 4-6-0 986 closed out steam operations on the Gibson Subdivision local freight out of McAdam on April 12,1960. Two days later, the erstwhile 986 would make the last steam run out of McAdam handling trains 52 and 51 between McAdam and St. Andrews, N.B. on April 14,1960.

 

Regular CPR steam operations in southwestern Ontario ended with the departure of Consolidation 3722 from Port McNicoll on April 30, 1960.

 

The final regular scheduled operation of CPR steam was the Montreal commuter operations. While the exact date has yet to be recorded, it is believed to have been June 26th, 1960. The steam fleet brought the trains into Windsor Station that Monday morning for the last time as the outbound afternoon and evening trains were all dieselized - or so the story goes.

 

However steam operations were not quite dead in Central Canada. What could have been the the final regular scheduled operation of CPR steam occurred on the evening of June 29th when K. R. Thomas reported seeing 2820, the first ‘Royal Hudson’ pulling an freight eastbound through the western suburbs of Montreal, presumably from Smiths Falls.

 

It may have been on the CPR Western Lines that the last regular service steam powered dispatch occurred. On July 27, 1960, noted Canadian railway historian Ron Ritchie saw P2 2-8-2 5441 handling an extra eastbound grain train from Winnipeg, Manitoba to Kenora, Ontario.

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Posted by AgentKid on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 9:49 AM

Miningman

This one for NDG.

100% CPR...the last run of the last of steam. 

 

Thank you,

Bruce

 

So shovel the coal, let this rattler roll.

"A Train is a Place Going Somewhere"  CP Rail Public Timetable

"O. S. Irricana"

. . . __ . ______

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, April 05, 2017 10:25 PM

Wanswheel- Terrific summary, in detail, on the last runs of steam across Canada. Also further reading gives a really good account of what is saved and where and also it's current status, at least up to 5 years ago or so. 

The account's and recollections from NDG in the Montreal area correlate perfectly. 

What is truly striking, regardless if the USA or Canada, is that all across North America, without exception, one hundred + years of a way of life ended just like that. Not just steam locomotives. Branch line small town passenger service, mail and express service provided by rail, all the infrastructure that went with that. Service facilities in every town everywhere big or small. Roundhouses, backshops, large numbers of occupations vanished. Pullman, sleeping car service, 

Just the upheaval in the New England states was mind boggling. 

Eventually so much rail lifted ...branch lines everywhere...entire Railroads, Milwaukee Road, Rock Island, entire divisions of CNR and CPR. 

Baldwin, Lima. CLC   Streetcar lines, rails in the cities. I could go on all night long.

Big big changes to our lives. Crown jewel to all this...the PRR and the NYC gone, ...what? WHAT? Pennsylvannia Station demolished. That is not even believable.

Some say it's this , some say it's that, everything from GM conspiracies, to political collusion, some say progress, some say ritual murder, whatever, most of us know it's sad and represents a big loss across the board. 

Some things have to change eventually. My contention is that we lost too much, too fast, and much of it would serve us well today in so many ways had we as a society chose that path. Where to next?

 

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Posted by ROBERT WILLISON on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 10:17 AM

Never knew it was a coordinated effort between the two carrier's.

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 6:22 PM

Robert Willison- They had several terminals, such as Toronto, that had shared facilities and CPR had trackage rights on some major CNR lines, such as Toronto to London. Also pool train passenger service Montreal to Toronto. These were all in locations where steam had retrenched to and was still relatively abundant. It goes to coaling towers, water towers, cost's associated with steam, ash pits and so forth. 

CPR ran some steam but only on their own lines out of Montreal for a very brief period of time after the deadline, CNR ran a freight, Winnipeg to Red Lake after the deadline as well. 99.9% steam was finito. 

These "after the agreed to date" were more anomalies that met a pressing need while they were still in storage but it was very short lived. 

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Posted by Firelock76 on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 6:56 PM

Miningman

Apr.30, 1960. CNR and CPR agreed to end all steam operations Canada wide. Things had been winding down for years with a very few outposts holding on. We are in Port McNicoll on the very last steam operation in regular service on Apr.30, 1960. 

 

I'm not 100% sure, but from the photograph it looks like that last steam run occurred under a grey, leaden, overcast sky.

How appropriate. 

It's been said a lot of "last runs" seem to happen during dreary weather.  Wonder why?

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Posted by Deggesty on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 8:06 PM

Wonder why? The skies were weeping over the end of steam?

Johnny

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 9:33 PM

Firelock76 and Deggesty- Just to put a further damper on it all, the CPR offered any or all 3 of the 3 2-8-0's at Port McNicholl #3722, 3632 and 3422 to any museum or group that wanted one free of charge, even including some reasonable storage time but no one came forward, no takers...I guess steam preservation was not yet a high priority or finacially doable for the time. They were all scrapped. 

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 11:24 PM

Here's the Hogg's Bay Trestle in Port McNicoll, scene of the last stand of regular steam service Apr. 30 1960.

Built in 1908, it was under armed guard 24/7 during both WWI and WWII. Tore down 1978. Rails lifted 81.

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Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, May 04, 2017 6:30 AM

Miningman
Here's the Hogg's Bay Trestle in Port McNicoll, scene of the last stand of regular steam service Apr. 30 1960.

Built in 1908, it was under armed guard 24/7 during both WWI and WWII. Tore down 1978. Rails lifted 81.

Pretty good - tearing down the structure before removing the rails.Oops - Sign

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, May 04, 2017 9:02 AM

 BaltACD- Ha Ha ..nice try! The Hoggs Bay trestle and it's tracks leading into the massive grain elevators gone in '78. The remainder of the entire Port McNicholl Subdivision was ripped up later. 

 A unique Mixed train service carried on for many years. It operated daily except Sunday from Port Mc.Nicoll to Orillia, its few local passenger carried in a combine to do their shopping in Orillia. It was powered by a D-10, which was quite sufficient for the few cars of freight and the one passenger car. What was unique about this train is that it was not in the public timetable, nor the employee timetable either! It ran as an extra and the locals all knew its schedule which returned from Orillia in mid-afternoon (around 2.30 p.m.). The conductor wore work clothes plus a uniform hat as was required by law. He would inform passengers about his estimated time to return to Orillia and no doubt watched for all to return before leaving. There wasn't even a station to use in Orillia, it having been sold off to the Canadian Legion. Returning, the engine was on the west end of the train tender first, with the combine next followed by the freight cars. It operated this way until it got to Medonte where the locomotive could be turned on the wye.

 

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Posted by MidlandMike on Thursday, May 04, 2017 3:25 PM

I would guess the St Lawrance Seaway doomed Port McNicholl.

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, May 04, 2017 6:09 PM

Midland Mike- CPR continued some service to Port McNicholl by reaching an agreement with CN for trackage rights. Here, following, is the reason for the end of it all. 

The loss of the "At and East" federal government grain rate subsidy in 1989 resulted in the end of grain movements through Port Mc.Nicoll bringing about its abandonment. The last train ran September 13,1991. (Owen Sound and Goderich elevators were also closed down.) In January 1990, CN closed its Tiffin elevator, their last Midland area elevator. 

On May 4, 1992 the National Transportation Agency ruled that the CPR did not have to go before a public hearing to seek abandonment of its three remaining segments of trackage in the area, stating they did not constitute a branch line under the Railway Act, rather they were merely spurs and a yard. 

These portions were: Mile 14.1 to 15.9 in Coldwater; Mile 28.3 to 29.0 in Port Mc.Nicoll; and Mile 31.2 to 31.4 in Midland. The CPR had already cancelled its running rights agreement with the CNR in November 1991.

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, May 04, 2017 8:20 PM

So a town that was served by both the CPR and the CNR for over 80 years now has neither. The mighty grain elevators are gone. Steamships galore called on Port McNicholl. The amount of grain moved out was staggering. It played a crucial role in both WWI and WWII. 

For 70 years a person could board a steamship for passage to Port Arthur and Fort William, now known as Thunder Bay. 

The railroads passenger service was so personal that it was reminiscent of Petticote Junction's Hooterville. 

Hoggs Bay Trestle was a famous and important landmark. 

Every last thing is gone. Almost.

 They still have this!

On June 23, 2012 the SS Keewatin, the last of the CPR Ships built in 1907, was returned to Port McNicoll where it had worked from 1912 until 1967. Keewatin is the last Edwardian steamship left in the world.[3] The SS Keewatin is in pristine condition on June 23, 2012 and is open for visitors from late April until mid October from 9 am until 5 pm.

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Posted by MidlandMike on Friday, May 05, 2017 11:36 PM

I Googled "At and East" but could not find anything related to grain.  How did this 1989 event cause the end for these grain ports?

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, May 05, 2017 11:51 PM

http://publications.gc.ca/collections/collection_2014/bcp-pco/Z1-1959-3-3-4-eng.pdf

Click on the above link and then the highlighted in yellow "Go to PDF document" ...it starts on page 382 and gives a great account of what it is ...Port McNicoll and others are well represented. 

If you do a search using "At and East grain rates" several items come up, mostly Government documents and reports. 

 

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