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Last CN Passenger service at Palmerston, part 1.  Operating as an extra, formerly running as train number 672 - the southbound RDC-1 passenger car from Owen Sound - coasts into Palmerston on Saturday, October 24, 1970 for the final time. Arriving at 0655h, the Railiner will be moved from the Fergus Sub side of the station over to the Newton Sub side to await the arrival of Extra 6354, formerly train 668 (RDC-2) from Southampton. Both will be combined and having met extra 6118 (RDC-1), the former train 662 from Kincardine, will depart at 0715h for the trip to Toronto (formerly train 658) via the Fergus, Guelph, Halton, and Weston Subs. Extra 6118, which had arrived at 0700h from Kincardine, will too depart at 0715h for Stratford.I believe the official last runs of the RDC service to Owen Sound, Kincardine, Southampton, and Goderich was the evening of Fri Oct 23, 1970. Although the Sat runs to Toronto (and Stratford) carried passengers, they were no longer operating as scheduled trains, hence the extra flags. Daylight Saving time ended early Sunday morning, Oct 25, 1979, and CN and CP would bring out their winter timetables at this time change.Note Canadian National 81 in the distance. The E-10-a mogul, built in 1910 by CLC as GTR 1001, E12 class. Later renumbered CNR 903 in 1923, and finally CNR 81 in 1951. She was donated to the City of Palmerston in 1959 and remains there well taken care of today.John Freyseng Photo, David Warne Collection slide.
Copyright Notice: This image ©John Freyseng; David Warne Collection all rights reserved.



Caption: Last CN Passenger service at Palmerston, part 1. Operating as an extra, formerly running as train number 672 - the southbound RDC-1 passenger car from Owen Sound - coasts into Palmerston on Saturday, October 24, 1970 for the final time. Arriving at 0655h, the Railiner will be moved from the Fergus Sub side of the station over to the Newton Sub side to await the arrival of Extra 6354, formerly train 668 (RDC-2) from Southampton. Both will be combined and having met extra 6118 (RDC-1), the former train 662 from Kincardine, will depart at 0715h for the trip to Toronto (formerly train 658) via the Fergus, Guelph, Halton, and Weston Subs. Extra 6118, which had arrived at 0700h from Kincardine, will too depart at 0715h for Stratford.

I believe the official last runs of the RDC service to Owen Sound, Kincardine, Southampton, and Goderich was the evening of Fri Oct 23, 1970. Although the Sat runs to Toronto (and Stratford) carried passengers, they were no longer operating as scheduled trains, hence the extra flags. Daylight Saving time ended early Sunday morning, Oct 25, 1979, and CN and CP would bring out their winter timetables at this time change.

Note Canadian National 81 in the distance. The E-10-a mogul, built in 1910 by CLC as GTR 1001, E12 class. Later renumbered CNR 903 in 1923, and finally CNR 81 in 1951. She was donated to the City of Palmerston in 1959 and remains there well taken care of today.

John Freyseng Photo, David Warne Collection slide.

Photographer:
John Freyseng; David Warne Collection [186] (more) (contact)
Date: 10/24/1970 (search)
Railway: Canadian National (search)
Reporting Marks: CN RDC (search)
Train Symbol: Extra 672 (search)
Subdivision/SNS: Fergus Sub. (search)
City/Town: Palmerston (search)
Province: Ontario (search)
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Photo ID: 43862

Map courtesy of Open Street Map

Full size | Suncalc
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11 Comments
  1. My god john you got up early for this one. Very nicely done.

  2. That’s, awesome! Great town so sad the railway is gone.

  3. Thanks Stephen and Marcus. Not as early as you might think, as I stayed the Friday night at a relative’s farm House near Hornings Mills, a little over an hours’s drive to Palmerston. And agree, very sad the railway is gone, John

  4. Good picture that brings back some childhood memories. Quite often in the late 1940′s & the early 1950′s my father would drive through Palmerston when traveling between London & Midland. The yard was quite active then. Palmerston does a much better job of looking CNR 81 than London does with CNR 86.

  5. Amazing image. Lots of details to look at.

  6. John, how many people were there at Palmerston or on the trip back to Toronto who were there to record or see the last run? Wondering if that station wagon across the yard was there for that purpose.

    The triangular “White’s Junction One Mile” sign just north of Main Street near the old Supertest Gas Station is still there, now moved a few hundred feet north near Inkerman Street.

  7. WOW! Great photo….being born 7 years after, this was my hometown. And I have always remembered the railway as it was still pretty much intact as shown in this photo. Even when I was 10 years old, our dentist remained in Listowel so we’d still make the trek up to see the old yards and station at Palmerston. My biggest regret came around 1995 or 1996, before it was officially gone my brother and I made a trip to Palmerston. Imagine my joy and excitement at seeing a train stopped, just north of Main Street. To this day, I believe that to be the last freight running from Owen Sound to Stratford…and wish I had taken a photo. The station was also ‘open’, although no employee was in sight. My brother made it in upstairs, but being the cautious type knowing I was trespassing I never went in. I remember seeing the floorboards on the bottom floor, sad and sagging over each beam looking like it would collapse at any moment. Was thankful to see photos a few years later of the station being restored, and hope to take my daughter there when this pandemic is over. Sorry this is so long, but just goes to show you the fond memories and the love I have for this once busy, railway town.

  8. This is an amazing photo. It would be interesting to know if that caboose in the background was in use or stored there.

  9. Wow, just wow, rain and all. Love it, thank you John! This one made my day.

  10. No unit number in your notes for Extra 672 RDC-1 eh?

  11. After looking closely at other pictures taken at Palmerston, I can confirm the number of the RDC that arrived from Southampton, becoming the lead unit of the 2-car RDC train to Guelph and Toronto – it is 6354, formerly a RDC-3 converted to a RDC-2. Have yet to identify the number of the RDC-1 from Owen Sound. Thank you for all your comments, they are appreciated. Answering Jacob’s question, there did not seem to be any other railway enthusiasts present, there were about 6 or so passengers boarding the RDC heading to Stratford. My guess is that there were very few “last run riders” as there would be no return trip to Palmerston. And Noe, I believe the van was in regular service.
    John

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