In the 1850s, Grand Trunk Railway, later Canadian National, was one of New England’s and Canada’s most important and heavily travelled railway lines. It linked Canada’s metropolis, Montreal – through Vermont and New Hampshire – with the nearest ice-free port at Portland, Maine. Despite constant upgrading, accidents did occur, some of them catastrophic. With details about four dozen such tragedies, you’ll learn what happened when people, vehicles, or nature decided to duel with a fully-loaded train. Discover the circumstances when a cattle train hit a mudslide… a passenger train toppled over the bank... two locomotives met in heavy fog that made it impossible to see… two trains, one fully-loaded with immigrants, came towards each other on ONE track!… the West Paris Bridge collapsed… two double-headed freight trains collided head-on … a train hit fuel tanker truck, with ensuing explosion and fire… a derailment toppled a chlorine tank car off a bridge onto the highway below. 196 pages, over 200 photographs, (5 colour), 16 maps and diagrams to show where the accidents occurred.
Author Jeff Holt has covered four dozen New England tragedies on the Grand Trunk (later Canadian National) railway line, providing interesting anecdotes, myriad photos, and helpful maps with explanatory diagrams to assist readers in understanding the context of each situation. Dramatic and graphic photos, some in colour, help draw the reader into each of the stories. People will want to pick up the book, to see details of how their community, or their railway line, was affected. Others will want to see how their friends, their families, their fellow railroaders, or their favourite railway, was impacted.
Jeff Holt wrote The Grand Trunk in New England, a general history, which was published by Railfare Enterprises Limited of Toronto, in 1987. A career science educator, he graduated from Gorham State ollege in Maine. Jeff obtained an MS degree in Biology from Concordia University and an EdM from McGill University. Since retiring from teaching in 2001, Jeff continues to do research in railway history. He is a life member of the Island Pond Historical Society of Island Pond, Vermont. Besides keeping track of his two daughters, Valerie and Bonnie, Jeff's interests include photography, computer security, genealogy, research into the John F. Kennedy assassination, and languages.