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The North America Railway Hall of Fame is the main part of the cultural space at the Canada Southern Station. Built in 1871–1873, the Station has been a prominent landmark of the city of St. Thomas for over a century.



Amtrak came into existence on May 1st, 1971, through the Rail Passenger Service Act. The Act authorized the newly formed National Railroad Passenger Corporation to manage and operate an American national rail network. Amtrak was organized to revive dwindling rail travel, as cars and planes became more popular. It was the first unified, centrally-managed, nationwide […]

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Lionel Corporation

Toy trains and model railways were the specialty of the Lionel Corporation, which was founded in 1900 and continues in business. Its products introduced generations of children to an awareness of the importance of trains. At its peak in the 1950s, Lionel sold $25 million worth of trains yearly. Joshua Lionel Cowen and Harry Grant […]

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William Stokes

William Stokes served for 46 years with the Michigan Central and New York Central, beginning in 1903. For 19 of those years he was an passenger conductor on such trains as the New York Special, New England Wolverine and the Detroiter.  Stokes also served as mayor of St. Thomas from 1928 to 1929 and several […]

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Joseph Brant Ryckman

Joseph Brant Ryckman, born September 7, 1871 in Hamilton, Ontario. He died in Windsor, Ontario on November 13, 1954. Joseph Ryckman entered the service of the Wabash Railway on December 31, 1900 and was promoted to conductor on September 17, 1907. He continued as a conductor on the Wabash Railway until the late 1940s. While […]

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Bloomingdale Trail

The Chicago and Pacific Railroad Company laid tracks for Bloomingdale Line in 1873 on Bloomingdale Avenue on the northwest side of Chicago. As the population of the city grew the rails became a danger to residents. In 1893, the city mandated that all tracks be elevated to reduce accidents. Passenger and freight service continued to […]

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Hot Metal Bridge

The 1174 foot long truss bridge in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania crosses the Monongahela River and consists of two parallel spans on a single set of piers. The Monongahela Connecting Railroad Bridge (MRC Bridge), built in 1887, and the Hot Metal Bridge, built in 1900, are separate spans but often go by one name: the Hot Metal […]

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Edgar Berryman

Canadian architect Edgar Berryman was born in 1839. He advertised himself as an architect, civil engineer, surveyor, and landscape gardener. He typically designed buildings in the Italianate, Gothic and French Renaissance styles.  Berryman was active in St. Catharines, Ontario from 1863 until he was appointed company architect for the Canada Southern station in St. Thomas, […]

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John Wilson Murray

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1840, John Murray had a long and varied career, first in the United States navy between 1857 and the Civil War. He had an avid curiosity and investigative talent that led him to work with the Erie, Pennsylvania police department and the Pennsylvania Central Railroad. Officers of the Canada Southern […]

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Stratford as a Railway Centre

Two lines – The Buffalo, Brantford and Goderich (later the Buffalo and Lake Huron) Railway and the Grand Trunk Railway (GTR) – arrived in Stratford in 1856. This marked the beginning of its history as a railway hub. Following their arrival, engineers, brakemen and conductors began to relocate to Stratford. Thirteen years later the GTR […]

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Mount Macdonald Tunnel

The Mount Macdonald Tunnel was built between 1984 and 1988 and was part of the $600 million Rogers Pass project. It marked the largest expansion of capacity since the Canadian Pacific Railway was completed in the early 1880’s. It is located in the Selkirk Mountains of British Columbia and was made by CPR to supplement […]

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