Photos on the Road


Above: Fireman E. Saunders. Standing in the doorway of a beautiful 6000 class locomotive is engineman Bill Hall. Bill was one of the finest engineer’s I have ever worked with. He could really make an engine dangle, and could handle the air brake to perfection. He was also as sharp on the Rule Book as any of the rule instructors. It was a treat working with Bill.

Below: Curly Vernor, the exact opposite of Bill Hall. Curly was a nice fellow but, unfortunately, he burned the grates out of an old 2100 hand fired pig of an engine at Neepawa and was fired. For that they should have hung a medal on him.

Head-end brakeman Al Peden enjoys the summer air on a night trip to Brandon, Man. on a 3300 class engine, 1953.


Hugh Peden (my son), has his hand on the throttle of the 2800 class Royal Hudson engine as it sits being repaired over in North Vancouver in 1996. This is the beautiful engine that graces the covers of so many calendars, and hauls tourists from North Vancouver up to Squamish and back all summer long.



Caught in a blizzard at Morris, Man., on a trip to Emerson with engine 2156. The rail line and roads were all blocked and it was several hours before the C.N. got a snow plow out to clear the tracks so that we could carry on. Winter 1955



L/R: Tail-end brakeman Al Peden, head-end brakeman Wally Parsons and the roadmaster in the blizzard at Morris, Man., winter 1955.



Conductor Lionel Clifford having an evening meal in the caboose while waiting for a call at Dauphin. Bryce’s bread can be seen on the table and paper towels are used in place of a tablecloth. August 1957.



Conductor’s bunk on the left, and tail-end brakeman on the right in the caboose at Dauphin, waiting for a call to go back to Winnipeg. It was obviously a very hot summer day and they lay in the stifling caboose without any sheets on. My bed was at the front right and since I was the "spare board" brakeman, I had to use the regular man’s bedding. Great working conditions!! It took the Freedman Inquiry into train crew working conditions a few years later, to get bunkhouses and a rest clause after eleven hours work, something our union seemed never able to get for us. Note pants hanging on the wall and socks hanging on the First Aid Kit on the left. Above the tail-end man’s head are the fusees and torpedoes for flagging oncoming trains. Summer 1957.



Left Photo: Trainman A.B. Peden at Victoria Beach. Right Photo: Probably taken at Grand Forks when I deadheaded down for the afternoon from Noyes or Pembina.



Conductor Hughie MacDonald at Brandon Jct., about 1955. Hughie later became a rule instructor.



L/R: Engineman Bill Hall, fireman Walter Bachynski, and conductor Charlie Mayor about 1948. Photo: Bill Peden



L/R: Engineman John Mineer and tail-end brakeman Bob Ireland at Brandon, getting ready for the return trip.



Conductor Jim Portree on the Symington to Sioux Lookout run. Jim was in the airforce during the war and was a great fellow to work with. Photo shows the new type caboose that came into service during the middle 1970’s. What a vast improvement over the old ones. These had electric lights over the desk and chesterfield, electric markers, electric floodlights on both ends to watch for dragging equipment after dark, toilet (if you had to go on an old caboose you were out of luck), electric refrigerator (no more carrying ice),and electric stove (no more carrying coal for cooking and heating). When you got to the other end of the line, there was a bunkhouse to sleep in with clean linen each time. No more sleeping in somebody else’s dirty linen. It took the Friedman Commission to bring these working conditions about, no thanks whatsoever to our union! I quit the railway before the above conditions came into effect so I never enjoyed the benefit of them. Photo: Bill Peden



A beautiful passenger engine with 4-8-4 configuration, the 6200 sits on display at Ottawa, Ont. Why were most of these beautiful engines cut up for scrap and not preserved for future generations to admire?



Train wreck on C.N. main line at Red Lake Road , early 1980’s Photo: Bill Peden



Bill Peden was tail-end brakeman and Joe Tymchysn was conductor on this wreck at Mileage 28 on the Redditt Sub. Photo: Bill Peden



L/R: Head-end brakeman Al Peden and fireman Harvey Spooner on a work train at McCreay, Man. 1952.. The 5000 class engines were passenger engines but had a California cab (open cab with side curtains) and were hand fired. We spent a couple of days at McCreary spreading ballast on the Gladstone Sub.



Uncle Fred dumped a dozen cars in the middle of the winter at Lake Francis when he was conductor on the Gypsumville wayfreight. Our crew got called out for the big hook to go and pick it up. Conductor Alex Dickson is shown above. Sam Payne was the Master Mechanic who was out on the job with us. It was bitter cold and it took us three days to get it cleaned up. Winter 1957.



Left Photo: Conductor Jack Caye at Neepawa, 1958. Right Photo: A few brakemen gathered on the back of a caboose, 1956 L/R: Neil Sorby, Walter Zaporzan, -----?-----, Bob Ireland.



L/R: Tail-end brakeman Johnny Ryan clowns around with the engineer’s oil can. Conductor Alex Dickson stands beside him. I was the head-end brakeman on this crew. Brandon, 1956.



Left Photo: L/R: Fireman Mel Cress and Engineman Harry Phil, 1954. Right Photo: Tail-end brakeman, Murphy



Head-end brakeman Rolly Jeanson at Brandon, Man., 1952



"The Little Arab," Maurice Weatherby at the Trainman’s Ball, about 1956.



L/R: Crew Supervisor John Kramble, Bill Gorman, baggageman, and conductor Bill Roberts at Trainman’s Ball.