Alexander Seal


Freight 376, RY-2 (Westbound) / 375 (Eastbound)

Rigby - St. Johnsbury Through Freight

Class S locomotives worked in rotation out of Rigby from the Portland division and were most often asigned to train 376, the big through freight for St. Johnsbury and occasionally as helper engines at Bartlett. After leaving Rigby after midnight, and after a water stop and inspection at Hiram, 376 arrived at Bartlett at dawn. The first order of business was to set off the east and westbound local cars in ther lower yard, then proceed to the freighthouse to drop off the way car of L.C.L. freight. Next, the locomotive shuffled off to the enginehouse to take coal and water and clean the fire. While these tasks were being performed the crew ate lunch. The helper engines, in the meantime, had been spotted ont he east leg of the wye. If 376 had two engines out of Rigby, because of the extra tonnage, one helper would be used on the rear instead of the usual two. Sometimes a helper was placed at the head end to Miles Pond or St. Johnsbury. At Miles Pond, the engine would cut off and return to Bartlett. If the helper went all the way to St. Johnsbury, it would return later in the day on 375 and be dropped at Barlett. After picking up the way car, 376's engine back down onto its train which had been left on the mainline wast of the station, and then hauled up to the upper yard. The train stopped with the caboose east and just clear of the wye switch. The it uncoupled and the train moved ahead. The helpers backed off the wye, coupled to the caboose, moved ahead and coupled to the train. Signal whistles echoed from the headend to the rear and all was ready for the struggle ahead, 14½ miles of rugged mountain grade. At Crawfords station the train stopped with the rear just east of the passing siding. The freight, after uncoupling from the helper engines, pulled ahead to clear the passing siding switch. The the helpers uncoupled from the caboose and moved to the passing siding, clearing the mainline. The freight then backed down and coupled onto the caboose and continued on to St. Johnsbury. The helpers returned to Bartlett light. The remainder of 376's trip would be easy, with a water stop at Carroll Tank and also pick up westbound cars set off by local freight 377 from Beecher Falls. Whitefield also had westbound cars to be picked up.

Helpers were later a pair of EMD SW7/9 switchers up to Crawford Notch.

Freight, 375, the eastbound through train, left St. Johnsbury around 3:45pm with 376's engines which were serviced earlier. The return trip of 375 wasted little time. At stop was made at Carroll Tank to take water, then a pause at Crawford at the head of the notch to inspect the train, turn up the retainers and to pick up any eastbound cars left by 377. After decending the grade to Bartlett the train highballed for Rigby.

Locos: URSA Mikado 622, 612 pusher (June 1947)

F3 681+682, 686

Freight 376 Extra, 2nd 376, Portland Extra (Eastbound) / 375 Extra, 2nd 375, Portland Extra Westbound

With the increase in traffic during the war years, it became necessary to put on a five-day-a-week extra fright to St. Johnsbury in 1946. Invariably called 376 Extra, 2nd 376, or the Portland Extra, it would depart Rigby Yard before dawn and would arrive at Bartlett around mid-morning with one or two Mikados on the headend. As with 376, the extra also got a push over the top of the hill.

Returned to Rigby after 375 had departed.

Caboose 580 (June 1947)

Bartlett Local RZ-2

Departed Rigby 9am Monday, Wednesday and Friday, returning to Rigby at 8am the following day. Steam, later a single SW7/9.

377 / 378 Beecher Falls Mixed

Empty milk cars for Colebrook, N.H. Ocassionally enough tonnage to warrant helper engine.

Combine 501. Ten-wheeler 371 (February 1950). 626 Pusher

367 (August 1948)

378 departing Bartlett and 7am and 377 departing Beecher Falls at 9am, usually meeting on the branch. The trains on handled passengers between Lancaster and Beecher Falls.

Gillman Extra ZO-2 / OZ-1

606 and 6 fuel tanks plus caboose (August 1948)

Later worked by a SW7/9, one of the helpers off RY-2.

378 Mixed???

162 / 163

Portland to St. Johnsbury trains, No. 162 from Portland to St. Johnsbury and 163 from St. Johnsbury to Portland.

Train 163, eastbound around 3 milk tanks at the head end, before RPO + whatever the other one was, plus 2 passenger cars.

Pacific 456, 458, 460, 621 Mikado

EMD GP7, E7 708, 710, 711

E7 began subbing for the usual GP7s in the mid-1950's after being made available from discontinued trains on the Portland Division. Efforts to eliminate these trains begun in 1956 and E7 708 worked the last round trip on 26th April 1958.

166 Mountaineer

Train B&M #2909? "Mountaineer" to Littleton,N.H. B&M Diner-Lounge #84 Mountaineer with parlor seats and the second car is a MEC coach-smoker lounge. B&M coaches (usually American Flyer style cars) The departure move back to Boston was actually a back-up movement for almost 6 miles to Wing Road where the train used the wye to turn for the rest of the trip back to Boston.

3806 B&M EMD E7 June 1947

Round The Mountains Excursion


Plough Extra

Rusell Plough 79 to Quebec Junction with 512 (February 1950)