Saturday, April 29, 2017

Pool Trains, Part 3 - The Pre-War Schedule Is Back

With wartime demands and restrictions on travel removed, The Standard ran a photo essay - with railway support - about the Montreal-Toronto Pool Train.

As the passenger train tables below will show, this was advertised by the CNR as the International Limited - running between Montreal and Chicago. The Pool train related contributions of the CPR were not involved west of Toronto.

Both this undated article and the public timetable were preserved by my father. This system timetable from September 26, 1948 was used during his Nova Scotia trip between Halifax and Yarmouth in 1949 - which you can find in the Short Subjects Index.

The Standard was a weekly supplement to the Montreal Star which eventually changed into the Weekend magazine supplement. The latter was included with newspapers across Canada. According to its Wikipedia page, The Standard was published from 1905 until 1951. Its contents included feature stories and fiction, photographs, recipes and cartoons.
With virtually all stores closed on Sundays ... before televisions were common in homes ... after attending Sunday morning church ... many Canadians would enjoy the comics and other extra sections of their weekend newspaper. It was common for people to subscribe to the local daily newspaper. Doorstep delivery to, and weekly cash payment from the subscriber were handled by a school-age agent of the newspaper. The Montreal Star was delivered in the late afternoon, six days a week.
Below is a partial scan of the broadsheet article. The actual size of this clipped and preserved sheet is 22 inches by 15 inches. The maximum scanner pass is roughly legal size. Larger and larger sheets are finding their way into my scanner as my skills improve.

About 65 years after it would normally have been thrown in the garbage, the degrading colour of the ink and of the paper seem to be converging on some shade of maroon or burgundy. I have removed the colour to provide black and white images.

Some of images of this photo essay were probably railway stock images. The article layout ran many smaller images down peripheral columns and the images are presented here in a plausible chronological order.

Some interior shots are beautifully lit. Some are dark and coarse and resist any efforts to resolve more detail. All are captioned and the uniform type size is your clue as to the size of the original photo before scanning.

Above is all the descriptive text for the story.

Below is the darkest photo.
Next: You'll notice that the road number of the power changes in this essay.

Above is a particularly nice telefoto shot at Windsor Station.which includes the interlocking tower.
The carman, with his long-handled hammer and lantern, has inspected the consist for defects with his ears and eyes and will report to the crew.

The cotton waste is plentiful and the gauges are polished.

The long run of the interlocking rods and the semaphore-equipped dwarf signals are interesting.
This close to headquarters there are enough workers to maintain this equipment
and to free it from winter snow and ice.

This locomotive will never have a two-way radio.
The fireman will be a Company witness if the photographer makes an error around the speeding equipment.
At this point in history, the CNR lines ran along the route of today's Victoria Street in Lachine.
... Using Windsor Station and the CPR line was a faster way to get to Dorval.

from: The Railways of Toronto; John Riddell; 1991; BRMNA. Photo: James Walder.
In July 1954, Train No 8 is climbing the grade to Danforth station.

I have found that official photographs of Pool trains are hard to find - perhaps because neither railway could point to the consist as being 'our train'. This is the best photo I could find of a Pool consist to illustrate my point that Pool trains were not particularly aesthetically pleasing public relations objects as the paint schemes did not match. A few examples of colour photos will follow in Part 4. 

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Again, in this post I have included every page with any kind of Pool train reference.
Hopefully future students of this obscure form of railway cooperation will find a complete record here.

The last photo in the article from The Standard is a nice time exposure
which shows the running gear being inspected using light from an engineer's torch.

Speculating: The engineer's window has the appearance of being equipped
with a 'clear view screen' - or 'spin window' - as commonly seen in ship applications.