Diesel-driven engine makes first run here

Pretty exciting headline eh?

I’ve mentioned the excellent online newspaper archive at islandnewspapers.ca before and how much great stuff there is waiting to be found inside. Today was another of those days where a trip into the archive returns another great nugget of Prince Edward Island rail history. Most of my searches are part of a greater project researching freight patterns over the railway. While chasing down a lead on coal sales I started wondering what might have made the paper with regard to the first diesels on PEI. After all, our Island Division was the first on the entire Canadian National network to be dieselized. Never one to dissappoint the archive returned this wonderful account of day one:

Click on the image to read the full edition at islandnewspapers.ca

Click on the image to read the full edition at islandnewspapers.ca

Those two 44 tonners were really part of something big. While not a photo from that first day, one of my favourite photos features one working this same Murray Harbour service. You can see a copy online in the CN Images of Canada website hosted by the National Museum of Science and Technology:
http://www.imagescn.technomuses.ca/railways/index_view.cfm?photoid=-1494612442&id=54

While on the subject of the 44 tonners, check out Trevor Marshall’s video on Youtube featuring an S scale model he made:

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