Thread: Old Halifax
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Old Posted Mar 23, 2019, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldDartmouthMark View Post
One childhood rail memory I have, that I have not been able to find visual proof of, is that there were a couple of out-of-service steam locomotives stored at the siding by the old Simpson's building on Mumford Road. This would have been around the late 1960s, I believe or possibly early 1970s.
Thanks for that. Yes, I too find it fascinating. Unfortunately your photo link seems to be broken at the moment.

I believe what you're referring to is the ill-fated railway museum established by the Scotian Railroad Society around 1970. A group of well-meaning enthusiasts -- my dad was among them -- led by the late Halifax neurologist, Dr. Stephen Bedwell (who I remember as a wonderful, charming man) attempted to establish a collection of historic rail equipment. They actually hand-laid that siding which, as you recall, paralleled the CN main line just off the Simpson's parking lot.

Among their collection was a beautiful private car built by Pullman in 1891, operated by the Rutland Railroad in Vermont as the "Ethan Allen", but purchased by Nova Scotia Pulp and Paper around 1964. The Halifax journalist H.B. Jefferson bought it in 1970 and a year later the SRS acquired it from his estate. I was in high school at the time and helped work on the car, which had a lovingly maintained mahogany interior.

They had a few other pieces, including a 1875 baggage car from the old Intercolonial Railway and a 1907 caboose but their showpiece was that steam locomotive, an 0-6-0 switcher nicknamed the "Georgia Peach". It was built by Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1911 and once operated in Georgia (hence the name) but had worked at the Drummond Coal Company in Westville from 1950 to 1967, making it the last steam loco to operate in revenue service in Nova Scotia.

Sadly the tale has an unhappy ending. Maintaining this collection proved too ambitious for a small volunteer group. Somewhere around 1983, I think, the SRS shut down and, unable to find anyone willing to acquire this historic equipment (including Nova Scotia's museums), all of it was scrapped.

I haven't been able to find a photo of the "Georgia Peach" online though I know I have one somewhere in storage. I also have the locomotive's #4 number plate that I picked up off the ground near Simpson's one night after it had been scrapped.

Last edited by ns_kid; Mar 24, 2019 at 10:15 AM. Reason: Correctsdating error
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