T1iE OCEAN IS NOW lliE ONLY PASSENGER TRAIN BETWEEN central Canada
and the totariti.es. Thh fine view of the Ocean was taten fro.
the rear of the last NO. 11 ., the two trains palSed at Aulae N.S.
on the afternoon of November 14 1981.
Published monthly by the Canadian
Railroad Historical Association
P.O. Box 148 St. Constant P.Q.
EDITOR: Fred F. Angus
CO-EDITOR: M. Peter Murphy
OFFICIAL CARTOGRAPHER: William A.
LAYOUT: Michel Paulet
THE TRAINl-1AN PLACES THE MARKER LAMP
on the last car of C.P. Rail
Atlantic Limi tedi at Windsor
station, Montreal on Saturday
October 27 1979. This was the last
run of this train as a C.P.
train before VIA Rail took over next
day and shifted the Montreal terminus
to Central Station.
Canadian Pacific photo No. E4481-4.
INSIDE FRONT COVER
THE FIRST RUN OF TRAIN No. II, the
Westbound Atlantic is seen
at Aulac N.S. on Sunday October 28
1979. This train, linking Halifax
with Montreal via Saint John, lasted
for just over two years before being
discontinued on November 15 1981.
Photo by David
ISSN 0008 -4875
CALGARY & SOUTH WESTERN DIVISION
60-6100 4th Ave. NE
Calgary, Alberta T2A 5Z8
BYTOWN RAILWAY SOCIETY
P .0. Box 141, S ta t i on A Ottawa, Ontario
NEW BRUNSWICK DIVISIOtJ
P .0. Box 1 162
New Brunswick E2L 4G7
CROWSNEST AND KETTLE-VALLEY DIVISION
P. O. Box 400
Cranbrook, British Columbia
PACIFIC COAST DIVISION
P.O. Box 1006, Station A, Vancouver
British Columbia V6C 2Pl
ROCKY MOUNTAIN DIVISION
P.O. Box 6102, Station C, Edmonton
Alberta T5B 2NO
300 Cabana Road East, Windsor
Ontario N9G lA2
TORONTO & YORK DIVISION
P.O. Box 5849, Terminal A, Toronto Ontario
P.O. Box 593
ST. LAWRENCE VALLEY DIVISION
P.O. Box 99
Ste. Doroth~e, Quebec H7X 214
Requiem for the
BY FRED ANGUS
Photos, unless otherwise noted, are by David Morris.
BORN JUNE 2 1889 DIED NOVEMBER 15 1981
AT THE AGE OF NINETY-TWO YEARS
FAST CONVENIENT OVERNIGHT PASSENGER SERVICE
BETWEEN MONTREAL AND SAINT JOHN NEW BRUNSWICK
Such a notice did not appear in any obituary column, but the sent
iment was there and the feeling of sadness was, to many, just as pro
found as it would have been at the death of an old friend. As a sort of
requiem, I would like to share with our readers a few personal memories
of this great train and its predecessors over a period of more than
My first trip on the Montreal -Saint John train was at the age of
less than one year, and this run then became an annual or sometimes a
semi-annual event. I can still recall the sense of adventure on going
with my family to Windsor Station and boarding a big red sleeping car
with a name such as NOKOMIS, NOBLE FORD , LAKE ERIE, GLENCAIRN,
or NOSBONSING, and soon being away at a mile-a-minute behind a power
ful steam locomotive while resting in a comfortable berth. Once clothing
and other paraphernalia was stored in the fish net hammock which hung
the wall, one would settle down for a good nights sleep until the
next morning we all would be informed that we had actually passed through
the United States during the night! Then a fast run along the Saint John
River, a thrilling ride across the Reversing Falls, and soon Journeys
end in the train shed of Saint Johns Union Station.
During the days of World War II there were regularly two trains a
known as the First train and the Second train), and often
each .ran in two sections with many cars. Even so, space was at a premium
and one always had
to reserve early to get accommodation. After the war
things were a bit less crowded, but the trains still seemed indispens
able; I well remember the seriousness of the suspension of service for
nine days during the railway strike of 1950. The two daily trains cont
inued until the mid-1950S, arid with the inocence of youth it never
entered my thoughts that all this would someday come to an end.
In 1955 the new modern train The Atlantic Limited was introduced.
This was diesel powered and had streamlined cars, and its introduction
not only marked the end of regular steam service, but also a reduction
to one train per day. But the service was speeded up, and some of the
231 R A L
old familiar cars were still in use on the new train, although some
were modernized. Even dome cars were now in regular service, and
this opened up a whole new vista especially in the Summer when the
sun set late and rose early.
As time went on I began to read up on the history of this run.
read the accounts of the first through train on the Short Line
through Maine, and of the celebrations that marked its arrival in
Saint John on June 3 1889. These were the days, long before my time,
which could still be recalled by older people in Saint John. They
the days of 4-4-0 steam locomotives, wooden cars with polished
mahogany exteriors, and service second to none. Later, larger loco
motives and longer trains came into service, and then around 1920
the steel cars replaced the wooden ones. Much of the equipment of
the 20s was still in use after 1950. The time before 1930 was a
time of constant improvement, increased traffic, and double daily
service, and these days were still clearly remembered by people in
the late 1950s.
Then in the 1960s a gradual change set in, at first so slight
as to be almost unnoticeable. First the train was a little less
crowded, then it was not quite so long, and ominous talk began to be
CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY
BETWEEN HALIFAX,. NoSo, AND ST. JOHN, NoBo, AHD MONTREAL
THE FIRST TIMETABLE OF THE SHORT LINE SERVICE. SUMMER 1889.
THE TRADITIONAL CONSIST of the Atlantic Limited in the late
1960s is shown by this view of No. 41 on June 26 1969. The
heavyweight sleeper on the rear is one of two (TRAVERS and TRING)
specially repainted for this service.
THE STAINLESS STEEL CONSIST of No. 42 started on September 23 1969.
This view was taken from Saint John viaduct on December 6 1969.
R A I L
heard about reductions in service. By the 70s there were often
only four cars including only one coach and one sleeper. The Saint
John Union Station was demolished and the train terminated at. Dever
about two miles from the city center. However the train cont
inued to run, ·and in those days was often hauled by one of C.P.s
famous E-8 diesels 1800 or 1802, but still it was a far cry from
the old days of the 1940s. With the coming of VIA Rail in 1978
there was hope for a revival if through service to Halifax could be
introduced. Sure enough, on October 28 1979 the new Atlantic No.
11 and 12 began to run and the long crowded trains were back again.
Alas it was all for such a short time; barely two years. By the
decree of a short-sighted federal government which cares little for
the feeling of the people the service was ordered to be discontinued
on November 15 1981. The reason given was to save money and to pro
vide more service to the already well-served and well-paying corr
idor of Ontario and Quebec. Despite the protests of thousands, lett
ers, petitions and editorials, the last run was made on that day.
More than ninety-two years of through service had come to an end.
On that last sad trip I recall the sight of people by the thous
ands coming to all stations along the line, regardless of the time
10. HALIFAX -MONCTON -SAINT JOHN -MONTREAL
n @@ @@
11 513-512 511-510 12
Doily Doily :>oily Doily
km M; Quot. Quot. Quot. Quol.
0 0 II 70 Dp Halifox, N.S. · … AI/HA I~ IS 55
~~ I T .0 171
· ……. lA,
200 174 01420 $plinghill Jel. ….. , . 01245
n7 141 1455 Amher~l. N.S. (II) ….. , .. 1270
743 151 IS 20 SocKville, N.B.
fop 11 os
Dp Monela, 112) ……
· . lA,
376 735 1742 Sunex .. , …. 0945
Op $olnl John · ……. lA,
471 293 We~tfield 8eoch Q) ….. ®0744
570 373 2015 A, fredericton Jel. ….. . · . Dp 0705
2025 Op Frederic/on JeI, …….. A, 0700
2105 A, F/edericlon (tord Beoverbrook·HoeIJ Dp 0
1955 A, F,edericlon leI. . . . . .
570 323 20 IS Dp fredericton Jel.
Q): : :
553 344 07037 Horvey
2100 Ad d / A (Dp 0610
Op~ MeA om, N.B. · . . . AI H lA,
594 369 2040 Vanceboro, Me. Q). … E1/HE 0438
619 365 02117 Donlollh
668 415 2153 Mottawamkeog I. .. . . 03 10
~~ lSlownville JCI.
lA, 02 10
797 497 2340 Greenville ., .. … . 01 17
856 532 00 58 Jockmon, Me. …….. 0075
Al . . Q lop
Op Megonhc, u.
A, 23 OS
1018 633 , 338 Cookshite I .. …. . (021 SO
1051 653 0430 Sherbrooke (CN) …..
1091 678 0511 Richmond …….. 20 IS
1157 719 0607 St·Hyocinthe · . . . . . . . 1917
1204 748 @O640 SI·lomberl …….. @1843
1210 752 0700 A, Montreol. Qu~. .. . ET/HE Dp 1830
(Cenllol Stn./Gole Centrole)
THE LAST TIMETABLE OF THE ATLANTIC. AUTUMN 1981.
MILK CANS IN CAR 4249 are seen through the platform railing of
business car 9 at Union Station, Saint John on December 6 1969.
ON FEBRUARY 19 1970, the first passenger train crosses the new
trestle at Bailey N.B. after the flood of February 3 destroyed
the old bridge. During the intervening 16 days passengers were
Saint John and ~fcAdam.
R A I L
of night, to say goodbye to an old friend. remember especially the
elderly lady at Brownville Junction who, with tears in her eyes,
declared that the town had suffered a great blow and would never be
the same. I remember people pointing out the train to their small
children so that in later years those children could say that they had
the Atlantic. I recalled my own memories of the days when I too
was a small child on this train, and of all the things that have happ
since. I realized that this was the end of an almost-unique type
of service, but a true example of the cooperation of two great neigh
bours; a train which started and terminated in Canada but which passed
through, and served, the United States.
The next morning, November 15 1981, the train, by now only a pass
enger extra, arrived at Montreal and the service was terminated. Now
there is only one train between central Canada and the Maritimes; the
famous Ocean, formerly the Ocean Limited. This too is a great train
with a very long history, and it provides fine service to Nova Scotia
and Northern New Brunswick. But to Southern New Brunswick, especially
Saint John and Fredericton, the route is so circuitous that one wond
ers how many non-rail-enthusiasts will use it. For the time to travel
by rail between the largest cities of Quebec and New Brunswick is now
eighteen hours, almost exactly the same as it took on the first through
train on the short line in 1889, and five hours longer than on the
Atlantic of recent times. Betl~een Montreal and Fredericton the time
difference is even worse despite the fact that rail service is now
provided direct to Fredericton for the first time in twenty years.
It is no wonder that many people feel that nothing can match the
short line service. For it was, and is, a true short line. A look·
at the map shows that the route between Montreal and Saint John does
not vary by more than one degree of latitude from a straight line at
ONE OF THE SHORTEST No. 42s on record was this coach-only train
leaving Fredericton Junction on April 5 1971. The reason was a
possible en£ineers strike set. for noon t-h.t-rl~
any point in the entire 480 milesl Perhaps the fight for better
train service is not over yet; one of the major opposition political
parties has declared the restoration of VIA service to be part of its
policy. It may be a vain hope, but one can always dream that some
future more enlightened government will see fit to resume passenger
service to thc Maritimes by this direct route and so help, in a truly
tangible way, to unite this country of Canada.
ALCO 4097 HEADS No. 42 at the lower switch at Dever Road in Saint
John on ~Iarch 21 1972. Note the absence of the beavcr shield on the
front of the engine.
N~II3ER 42 IS RUNNING TEN 1l0URS LATE as thi rd 908 in thIS Vl ew taken
on April 30 1973. The consist has already becn turncd at Iredericton
Junction due to hi2h water at Bailey.
NU14BER 42 REGISTERS BY TICKET at The Keag Ulattawamkeag, Maine) in
the daylight running five hours late after waiting for second 949 at
Magog when she broke apart. The date was March 23 1974.
CANADIAN 238 R A I L
THE TWO ATLANTICS Nos. 41 and 42 passed each other in the wilds of
northern Maine, but this event was seldom photographed as it took
place during the night, and usually not at a station. Here we have
two views of this event under different conditions. The first is of
a very rare daylight meet at Brownville Junction. Both trains were
many hours late due to a wreck at Lakeview, and David Morris was on
to record the trains passing on July 28 1975. The other meet
was also at Brownville Junction,at night on July 20 1977. This view
is equally rare as it shows both units 1800 and 1802 passing each
R A I L
DURING THE SJlaHER ~10NTHS the Eastbound train was known as No. 40
instead of 42. This is the last 42 leaving Fredericton Junction
on April 29 1978. No. 42 never ran again, because when the next
winter schedule came in the C.P. train was replaced by VIA No. 12.
THE LAST EASTBOUND TRIP FOR LOCmlOTIVE 1800 is seen at McAdam N.B.
early on the morning of March 4 1978. This was the usual consist
at that time.
VIA 1405 (ex-C.P.) and 4072 head an eleven-car train as No. 40 prepares
to leave Windsor station on March 4 1979.
CANADIAN 241 R A I L
ON JUNE 3 1979 THE SHORT LINE SERVICE ca~PLETED 90 YEARS OF SERVICE, and locomotive 1802,
arriving at Saint John that day carried the number 90
on the pilot in commemoration of this event.
R A I L
STAINLESS STEEL .BAGGAGE CARS started on this train on August 3 1979,
and this photo of No. 40 leaving Windsor station was taken August 27.
CONDUCTOR SEELY FILLS OUT FORMS in dome diner 505 on the Atlantic
Limited on ~lay 3 1978.
THE CONDUCTOR AND TRAI~IAN pose for a photo at a stop along the line.
R A I L
MAKING UP THE BERTH in a bedroom on the Atlantic Limited on
the last day it ran as a C.P. train, October 27 1979.
Pacific photo No. E4481-6.
CANADIAN 245 R A I L
THE COOK PREPARING THE LAST DINNER on the Atlantic Limited as
a C.P. train, just before departure from Montreal on October 27 1979.
Canadian Pacific photo No. E4481-12.
R A I L
LOADING THE BEER into the Skyline car at Windsor station on
October 27 1979.
Pacific photo No. E4481-43.
247 R A I L
CONDUCTOR OUELETTE COLLECTS TICKETS leaving Montreal on the evening
of October 27 1979. Next morning this would be VIA 12.
R A I L
THE LAST RUN OF THE ATLANTIC AS A C.P. TRAIN actually had three
identities on its run from Montreal to Saint John. From Montreal to
~Iegantic it was No. 40, then it was Passenger Extra to Brownville
Junction, and finally VIA No. 12 east of Brownville. This view is
at Brownville Junction just as it became the first No. 12 in the
early morning of October 28 1979.
. .t ~ ~.t
1: ~-lZ -• .;os y. ti ~ ~
, • ~ ,. < ,
PHIL ANDREWS MAKES HISTORY as the clock approaches 2:00 A.M. on
the morning of October 28 1979. Just about this time VIA No. 12
was born in northern Maine.
THE LAST C.P. ATLANTIC, by now officially VIA No. 12,
arrives at C.P. Rails Dever Road station at Saint John.
That day, No. 12 was annulled east of Saint John, but the
next day through service to Halifax began.
R A I L
DURING THE 1980 CHRISTMAS SEASON the Atlantic ran in two sections
to carry the extra holiday traffic. Second No. 11 is uepicted at
Saint John on December 20 1980.
TWO VIEWS OF THE LAST WESTBOUND ATLANTIC on the night of
November 14 1981. In the first scene, No. 11 has just stopped
at ~lcAdam N.B. before crossing into ~!aine, while the second
depicts the same train at Vanceboro !laine a little later as
flashbulbs light up the sky. Sad scenes like this took place
at all stations that night as thousands of people came to say
lWO OF THE ORDERS CONCERNING THE LAST WESTBOUND ATLANTIC the
night of November 14 1981. Former No. 11 had now become pass
enger extra 6773 as it compl eted its last run to ~Iontreal.
CONDUCTOR ROGER LARRABEE fills out the last form 352 on the
Atlantic in the early morning hours of November IS 1981 as
an era comes to an end.
THE FINAL EASTBOUND ATLANTIC was also a passenger extra as
shown by this order, dated November IS 1981, which shows the
schedule of this last run between McAdam and Saint John. The
train then continued on to Halifax and was the last Atlantic
Conductors Passenger Train Report CPR_it r3C
J Ii? 1= I-I 1-J~
I~- ) j,I,-~ I-R
1;= 1 —
WtTH A IlICI:ET OF TEAllS th. £iDal CoDdul;.tor. P … .., … Tlaill Rop<>rt (fonl l51)
for th, AtlaaUo: fro-~IIll. JUllction to SaInt Joh ,has the flll elIiot.
AREweLL TO THE ATLAHTIC
Thls photo coveule of the Atlantic t.1.itod from the 1960s
until 1981 VIS made possible by David Harris of Fredericton N.8.
collection of photos of this train p!Ovided -aSt of
tho illustrations used in thb issue. lie captured on riI. _n1 of
the notable events of these years, and we auch appreciate his
providinl I selection of so.e of the .ore sianificant photos for
this issue of Canadian Rlil,
nlE LAST PASSENGER T1tA.IH TO OPERATE IN nm STATE OF MAINE was
eastbound No. 12 on the ltOrnina of Nov.ber IS 1981. 8y the
ti.e it reached Vanceboro, the other train had already re-entered
Canada on its final weStva~ run. Here, No. 12 is about to leave
Vanceboro on its last Tun, so endi, an or ••