Rolly Martin Country


  Exploring ... History, Canada, Technology
A website created and written by David J Gagnon

Glacier House CPR circa 1900.

Rolly Martin
The classic Canadian Pacific Railway locomotive engineer and a friend.

Rolly's Retirement

New photos from retired Schreiber Terminal Supervisor Bill Needham - August 2014.

David J Gagnon

Please feel free to drop me a line:


While at this page, you can scroll through ALL the article titles
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you can drill down starting with these 2 links.

Go To History and Technology Section

Go To Railway Section

History and Technology Section

to Atomic Follies
to Farming
to Great War
to Newfoundland
to Nova Scotia and Cape Breton
to Postcards and Photographs of Canada

to Telegraph

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Atomic Follies

Go Yalta to Hiroshima via Tinian & LeMay's Tokyo 'fire job' ... bombing 'for effect' in Japan ... sugar coating the atomic medicine.
Go The Nuclear Juggernaut starts rolling ... Follow its merry course to 1945 ... Who invented the atom ? ... also Einstein, Fermi, world politics.
Go The Nuclear Juggernaut from 1945 to 1989 ... it's all downhill ! ... Terrified by a 'fellow traveler' ... atomic culture and nuclear winter.

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Go Railways on the farm ... recent dairy technology  ... a celebration of old farm technology which got the job done ... on Canadian rails.
Go Making hay on a dairy farm ... making good hay through the ages ... historic dairy cow diets !! ... more Canadian rails on the farm.

The Great War

Go Railways at war. Early strategies 1861-1914 ... the railway becomes a key weapon in the US Civil War, the Franco-Prussian War, and the Great War.
Go The German state and its railways as the Great War began ... Germany's railway system ... and a historic account from a witness.
Go Railways to and from the Great War Battlefield ... industrialized war requires industrial logistics ... railways into the battle zone.
Go The Battle of the Plains of Abraham compared to the Great War ... how industrialization and explosives changed war 1759 to 1914.
Go Great War battlefield survivors - medical care ... the conditions faced by wounded survivors from Newfoundland and Canada.
Go Great War battlefield survivors - shell shock ... some soldiers never leave 'their battlefields' ... illness or cowardice ? Many old and new views.
Go Mary Dexter and her battlefield survivors, 1914-1915 ... an American volunteer nurse with the British who recorded what she saw.
Go Mary Dexter and her battlefield experiences 1915-1918 ... early efforts with PTSD ... driving ambulances in the French Army.

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Go Location and geography ... Newfoundland's unique location and history ... its unusual railway.
Go Cod fishery and fishing techniques ... Codfish Through History ! ... Sandford Fleming shows up with a plan.
Go Early railway construction ... and the Reid Newfoundland Company ... Newfoundland politics! ... transinsular completion.
Go Land grants and forest resource development ... early electricity, newsprint for trans-Atlantic export ... Corner Brook and Grand Falls.
Go Fighting winter at Gaff Topsail ... the Reids use rotary snow plows at the top of the island.
Go The Newfoundland Regiment at Beaumont Hamel ... contemporary accounts of Gallipoli and the Somme ... why they matter ... July 1.
Go World War 2 ... Royals on rails, the railway and Gander ferry flights ... Newfoundland even more famous ... Americans give us 'The Bullet'.

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Nova Scotia and Cape Breton

Go Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and the Cabot Trail.
Go Cape Breton mining and how collieries evolved.

Postcards and Photographs of Canada

Go Fun and pleasure with postcards ... a small selection including Ottawa Union Station.
Go Quebec postcards ... railway to a religious shrine ... the Montfortains ... Le train du nord ... elderly Birkenheads on the banks of the Ottawa.
Go Photographs of things you don't see in Canada today ... high school aerial navigation .. a wooden mosquito .. Morse room on election day.
Go Photographs of things you don't see in Canada today ... pocketwatches .. F-86s .. MLWs .. doggies, Inuit at HBC .. trading floors .. press trains.
Go Portage la Prairie Manitoba and environs 1985 ... a vacation in a multi-faceted land.

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Go  Telegraph Part 1 - Samuel Morse and the Telegraph ... 'Success has many fathers' ... and many paternity suits ... What really happened at signal hill.

GoTelegraph Part 2 - William Cooke and Charles Wheatstone ... mail coaches ... highballs in the Austrian Empire ... zee French railway telegraph.

Go Telegraph Part 3 - Stuff in the Operator's office ... Telegraphs on the Grand Trunk in 1855: DX UX 17 23? ... Four cables over Niagara.

Go Telegraph Part 4 - Early primary cells: Zinc you will find this interesting ... New! 'wires on poles'! ... Emergency techno-tricks ... Montreal Telegraph Co.

Go Telegraph Part 5 - Local instruments and the local circuit ... sounder, relay & key ... Field to Revelstoke through Rogers Pass ... all gone today.

Go Telegraph Part 6 - Graduation exercises are in order ! ... The telegraph switchboard ... The telephone is gaining in popularity ... The ancient railway code.

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Railway Section

to Canadian National Railways
to Canadian Pacific Railway
to Canadian Railways
to Lake Superior Railroading

For first-person views into Canada's recent railroading past by another author,
try this excellent
blog :

Go Rochemolles - La Decauville, la diga, la strada, e la luce ... Travel and new technology through the mountains ... Grand Trunk technology in Italy ?

Canadian National Railways

Go The prelude to the CNR ... Laurier and Borden ... maps of the early lines ... the Great War's demands and the railway question.
Go Reconsidering the origin of the CNR ... Canadian Northern and the Grand Trunk (Pacific) ... government objectives and national identity.
Go Canada by train, 1979 VIA/CN's Super Continental ... an autumn vacation trip across Canada on the 'northern' route.

Canadian Pacific Railway

Go Delorimier shops 1850-1900 and rolling stock maintenance ... CPR consolidates its maintenance ... Colborne or Delorimier ?
Go Angus shops 1900-1960 and steam locomotive maintenance ... the origin and essence of the famous facility.
Streamlined passenger trains and Canadian aviation beginnings ... rivetted aluminum versus shotwelded stainless steel.
Go CPR's The Canadian, its equipment and interiors ... what went into the famous train ... Canadian art rides the rails.
Go Canada by train, 1979 on VIA/CP's Canadian, Vancouver to Winnipeg ... across Canada's varied weather and landscape.
2 Canada by train, 1979 on VIA/CP's Canadian, Winnipeg to Montreal ... a snowy journey ends in Montreal ... Windsor Station.
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Canadian Railways

Go An Act Respecting the CPR ... British Columbia's conditions ... the text of the CPR Act ... the CPR Syndicate's rights and responsibilities.
Go 'Macdonald's White Elephant' ... American editorial makes some shocking and un-neighbourly comments ... Can you believe it? They are wrong!
Go Canadian Railway Rulebook 1876 ... Intercolonial Railway legislation ... Drop the time ball! Fire the noon gun! We now have standardized time.
Go Railways across the North American continent ... so many creative ways to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific !
Go Southern Saskatchewan and Palliser's Triangle 20 years ago ... Tired of cold and rainy vacations ? Why not visit a semi-arid desert ?
Go Surveying & railway location in the good old days ... JHE Secretan's account and the tools of the trade ... dumpy levels, transits, feet.
Go Railway snow fighting, from shovel to spreader ... the necessary evolution of the snow clearing machinery used by railways.
Go Spending time at the tracks ... documentation of a mis-spent youth in the 1980s.

Lake Superior Railroading

Go Schreiber and White River ... the unique and vanished characteristics of these essential, historic, pioneer railway centres.

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