OTTAWA, Oct. 15 /CNW/ - The Confederation Train, a rolling exhibit with
its distinctive O Canada horn that crossed Canada during Centennial year in
1967, is among this year's inductees into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame.
The selection helps honour the heroes, technologies, leaders and communities
of the Canadian railway industry.
Others include Calgary author Donald Bain and CPR photographer Nicholas
Morant. Railway civil engineers, represented by the late J.E. Schwitzer of CP
and CN retiree Ron Bailey of Edmonton, are being recognized for their
engineering feats in harsh weather and terrain. The Town of Mount Royal, QC,
was created as a model community by the Canadian Northern Railway, a
predecessor of CN, to finance construction of the tunnel that still carries
commuters into downtown Montreal through Central Station.
"This year's inductions illustrate the important role that people and
their initiatives have played in helping the Canadian railway industry grow
and Canada to prosper," said Les Kozma, Director and Chairman of the Canadian
Railway Hall of Fame. "Without people like these, our industry would never
have made it to where we are today."
The Railway Hall of Fame categories, and background on the 2007
Technology: The Confederation Train - On New Year's Day morning 1967,
hours after Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson had lit the Centennial Flame on
Parliament Hill at midnight to launch the nationwide observance of the 100th
anniversary of Canada's nationhood, a ceremony was held at the new Ottawa
Station. Madame Pauline Vanier, on behalf of her husband Governor General
Georges Vanier, dedicated the train to reacquaint Canadians with their history
during that momentous year of celebrations.
The train included a diesel locomotive and eight coaches loaned by
Canadian National Railway. The exterior facades of the coaches were walled
over and given a colourful "super graphics" treatment. The diesel had the
Centennial symbol emblazoned on its nose under the headlight and the
locomotive horn sounded the first four notes of O Canada. The train made its
public debut in Victoria on January 9. It crossed the nation, arriving at the
Atlantic coast in Nova Scotia by October and ended its itinerary in Montreal
on the evening of December 5.
Over the intervening months, some 60 cities and towns, and hundreds of
thousands of Canadians, visited the train. The Confederation Train was funded
by the Government of Canada through the Centennial Commission. It operated
under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of State. The project was designed and
coordinated by the Canadian Government Exhibition Commission, an agency of the
then Department of Trade and Commerce.
Leaders: The Railway Civil Engineer - The category is represented by the
late J.E. Schwitzer, Canadian Pacific and CN retiree Ron M. Bailey of
Edmonton: Critical to the past, present, and future of the railway industry,
individuals performing the role of civil engineer on Canada's railway network
have made an incredible contribution to not only the industry but also to the
nation as a whole. Historical engineering works such as Canadian Pacific's
famed spiral tunnels and the Grand Trunk Pacific - now CN - transcontinental
mainline remain a legacy to the contribution of such individuals. Modern
engineering programs, such as those led by Mr. Bailey on behalf of CN during
the 1980's, ensured continued capacity and efficiency fir railway companies
dealing with today's burgeoning growth.
Heroes - Nicholas Morant: His name is synonymous with Canadian Pacific.
He is known across Canada and in many other parts of the world for his
photographs of the railway and its related business activities. He was the CPR
photographer! His 50-year career spanned the Great Depression, the Second
World War, the Cold War, the end of steam, and the end of company-operated
For 44 years, the late Mr. Morant crisscrossed the country on passenger
trains, enroute to and from assignments to all the subsidiaries of Canadian
Pacific. He photographed hotels, steamships, trucks, airplanes, oil wells,
mines, logging and myriad other facets of the CPR. He photographed people,
places, and events. He chronicled the times, writing for the company magazine
as well as photographing developments on the railway. After retiring to Banff,
he continued to photograph trains before his passing. As a result of his
talents, dedication and work ethic, his legacy remains through a photographic
collection that chronicles the rich heritage of the Canadian Pacific.
Community - Town of Mount Royal, Quebec - A historically rich town that
was created by the Canadian Northern Railway in order to finance the Mount
Royal Tunnel Project. This Model City is one of the few completed projects in
the wave of model cities that were planned at the turn of the 20th century.
Today, TMR remains an integral part of the Montreal region and the CN system
where commuter trains continue to operate on the original Canadian Northern
route. In fact, commuter trains carry more than 60 million riders a year in
Canada, reducing road congestion, fuel consumption and emissions.
Special Award Donald Bain - Similar to previous Special Award honourees
of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame, such as Gordon Lightfoot, Donald Bain of
Calgary is an accomplished railway author. He has helped tell the story of the
railway industry in Canada. In the late 1970's, Mr. Bain spearheaded the
production of a single volume known as "Canadian Pacific in the Rockies." This
photographic history lesson morphed into companion publications covering
Canadian Pacific, CN, regional railways, and U.S. railway operations across
The result is an excellent series of publications that not only detail
the history of railway operations in Canada, but also provide a valuable
insight into the important role of the Canadian railway industry in the
ongoing development of the nation.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is a virtual hall of fame created in
2002 by the Railway Association of Canada with the support of its 57 member
railways and the Canadian Northern Society of Alberta..
Since that time, some 60 nominees have been inducted into the hall of
fame. They are featured on the website as well as in an interpretive park in
the Village of Big Valley, Alberta.
The community is also the site of significant railway and local heritage
preservation, and the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Pavilion helps to
complement those efforts. The historic interpretive park has already attracted
more than 20,000 visitors.
For more information, please go to www.railfame.ca.
For further information:
For further information: Roger Cameron, Railway Association of Canada,
(613) 564-8097, firstname.lastname@example.org; Les Kozma, Canadian Northern Society, (780)