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list price: $29.95
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover
category: Transportation
published: Sep 2008
ISBN:9781897190418
publisher: DC Books

Mount Royal Tunnel

Canada's First Subway

by Anthony Clegg

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0 of 5
0 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $29.95
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover
category: Transportation
published: Sep 2008
ISBN:9781897190418
publisher: DC Books
Description

An illustrated history of the electrified railway tunnel and station complex still serving Montreal.

This story had its start in the pre-World War I railway building boom, when Canadian Northern Railway set out to provide Canadians with competition to the Canadian Pacific and Grand Trunk railways. Since those competitors had already established entries into Montreal from the east, west, and south, CNoR decided that entering downtown from the north, even though a four-mile tunnel through Mount Royal would be required.

The Mount Royal Tunnel describes the building of CNoR’s huge complex that became today’s Central Station, and the site for downtown Montreal’s massive complex: Place Ville Marie, Queen Elizabeth Hotel, Place Bonaventure, CN headquarters, and other large office buildings. The clean-running electric locomotives hauled trainloads of commuters to the CNoR’s 'Model City' development and other suburbs to Montreal’s northwest, with change-overs made to steam locomotives (later diesels) to take inter-city trains to Ottawa, Toronto, and the western provinces.

Anthony Clegg’s book describes, in detail, how the tunnel was constructed and equipped for electrical powering of trains … what the trains that ran were like, and where they went … how the post-World War I period caused government takeover of CNoR, becoming Canadian National Railways … insights on how the increasing traffic led to new multiple-unit self-propelled commuter trains … the decline in inter-city traffic, and how that led to the line being completely reconstituted as a commuter line … with CNR finally exiting the commuter operations entirely, turning them over to the municipal AMT, who completely reengineered and modernized the line’s electrification, infrastructure, and power substation facilities.

Over 120 photos illustrate the construction of the tunnel, the line, and the Central Station complex. Locomotives and passenger cars, including various multiple-unit cars and trailers, as well as line cars, are featured. Maps and selected equipment diagrams are included.

About the Author

Anthony Clegg was born in Toronto, Ontario, but moved at an early age to the Montreal, Quebec area. He was educated at St. Laurent High School, resided for two years in Ottawa, Ontario, and lived with his wife Mae at their St. Hilaire, Quebec home for four decades. He began his career with Canadian National Railways in 1942, first in accounting, later as the railway's draftsman and cartographer. During his younger years, he lived in Ville St. Laurent, Quebec, within sound of the Mount Royal electrics' shrill whistles and the deeper notes from the early MU cars. He especially enjoyed trips from Vertu to Montreal in this MU equipment, where passengers could get the full view of the tunnel through the window in the front door. Tony's early interest in railways was fostered by his aunt who took him to watch the trains from the bridge near Danforth Station, Toronto. As a teen-ager, some of his favourite birthday gifts were the railway passes to interesting places given to him by his mom and dad. Tony's father worked for Canadian National Railways until 1941, having been employed by its predecessors, starting with Canadian Northern Railway, in 1914. He was an associate of the Canadian Railroad Historical Association, having taken a very active part in the Association's many publications and railway excursion activities, including several years as Editor of Canadian Rail magazine. He was also a member of the Ferrovian Society, and was one of the instigators of the Ferrovia railway exhibit at Montreal's renowned 'Man and His World'. Anthony Clegg's writings include Mount Royal Tunnel, and - with Raymond Corley - Canadian National Steam Power, as well as Self-Propelled Cars of the CNR. He collaborated with Omer Lavallée to write Catenary Through the Counties, as well as Cornwall Electric Railway -- the Insurance Company's Streetcars.

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Contributor Notes

Anthony Clegg was born in Toronto and currently resides in St. Hilaire in the Montreal area. He began his career with Canadian National Railways in 1942, as a draftsman and cartographer.He is an associate of the Canadian Railroad Historical Association and was for several years Editor of Canadian Rail magazine.Anthony Clegg's writing include Mount Royal Tunnel, and -- with Raymond Corley -- Canadian National Steam Power. He collaborated with Omer Lavallee to write Catenary Through the Counties, as well as Cornwall Electric -- the Insurance Company's Streetcars.

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