While on a shore excursion out of Corner Brook, Newfoundland on a New England / Atlantic Canada cruise, we passed a small museum honoring the Newfoundland Railway. I was on a bus, and wasn’t too happy – as seeing the museum and not being able to photograph it was worse than not seeing it, not knowing it was there, and then not feeling like I missed anything. We’ve all been there for something.
As things would have it, we had some time before the ship sailed, so… It was off to the dock and to the cab line. And then, a short drive to the museum in Humbermouth, NL.
My cab driver was a native Newfoundlander, and had driven by the museum many times, but had never stopped. He walked with me as I photographed, and as we talked about life in Newfoundland, we also talked about the history we were looking at. One thing about trains is that they an often tell a story. The rails themselves tell you who made them and when, and sometimes, where as well. Castings have the manufacturer’s name, and often the date. Engines have a Builder’s Plate to tell their story. So, in about half an hour, we both learned things we didn’t know before our brief encounter.
Unfortunately, the Museum itself was closed, so my education about the Newfoundland Railway was limited to the rolling stock on display.
The Newfoundland Railway ceased operations in 1988 when the Trans-Canada Highway was completed across Newfoundland.
If you’d like to learn more about the museum, check out the Railway Society of Newfoundland Facebook Page.
The Museum Association of Newfoundland and Labrador’s railway site can be found here: Railway Society of Newfoundland
Also worth checking out is the Railway Coastal Museum website. The museum itself, with excellent dioramas and displays in former Newfoundland Railway passenger cars is in St. John’s, NL.
If that’s not enough information, here’s some recommended reading: “Rails Across the Rock: A Then and Now Celebration of the Newfoundland Railway.” Pieroway, Ken. 2013 (I don’t have it in my collection yet, but it’s been well received in the reviews I’ve read.)
We saw just enough in Newfoundland to add it to my Bucket List. A few hours of shore time just didn’t do it justice.