Wanted: photos of a CNR Waybill Box

Based on a successful use of mock-ups during this week’s operating sessions, I’ve decided that I want to add waybill boxes to the layout at St. Williams and Port Rowan. I want to create replicas of the boxes mounted on many CNR stations, where agents and train crews could safety exchange these important documents even when nobody was on duty in the depot.

My friend Chris Abbott is keen to put his wood-working skills to use so I’ll let him tackle the boxes, which I will mount on the fascia in front of each station.

But – I need detail photos of the boxes: Something that shows the arrangement of hardware would be ideal. I have been looking through my collection of books related to the CNR, and while I have found many examples of station photos where one can see the box, close-up shots of the boxes themselves continue to elude me. Online searches have also proven fruitless, although they did turn up a couple of excellent photos of Southern Pacific bill boxes on Tony Thompson‘s blog, Modeling the SP.

So… a request: If you know of a suitable photo of a CNR waybill box, can you let me know in the comments section? If you have a CNR waybill box and can photograph it for me, that would be equally awesome.

Thanks in advance!

4 thoughts on “Wanted: photos of a CNR Waybill Box

  1. Hi Trevor,
    Some cars or loads to consider are Farmall tractor loads on 53′ flatcars. Potter Motors (North of the end of track) in Port Rowan was an outlet/dealer for these tractors and I remember hoeing corn and watching a westbound behind a 900 diesel with a flatcar of red tractors. You could use a NKP flat as the Nickel Plate served the International Factory in Chicago. Also, there was an International plant in Burlington or Hamilton so you could substitute a Canadian road.
    St. Williams boasted a boatworks (McCalls) who shipped boats … yes boats … packed 8 to a boxcar. My brother-in-law worked there and remembers packing them vertically in the car. That must have been tedious. These loads were sent to Eaton’s in Toronto.
    My sister-in-law’s family also lived in St. Williams and had a stub ended siding at the back door of Hammonds Mill. They received bagged concentrate (feed additive) and charcoal briquets by rail. They shipped out grain in boxcars with open doors and plywood half-doors.
    From Bob Martin, a former hogger, I learned that the Vittoria trestle was restricted to half loads later in this line’s history.
    I once observed a Medical car (passenger car with MEDICAL written in the middle) within a consist… I assume headed to Port Rowan for the agent’s annual physical? It contained a bed at one end, the curtains were down preventing any other views inside.
    My mother grew up in Port Rowan and remembers the private rail cars of Americans of the Long Point Company parked on the siding in Port Rowan. People like Pierpont Morgan of Standard Oil coming to duck hunt on Long Point Bay.
    I hope you find this helpful. I shall continue another day.
    Yours in railroading,
    Monte Reeves

    • Hi Monte:
      What a great list of traffic on the Port Rowan branch. Thanks so much! I’m going to write this up in a post to be sure other readers see it, and I look forward to more of your memories when you get a chance.

  2. The private car travel is especially interesting. There was more of this than one imagines on many branchlines. The Schomberg and Aurora had a private siding that served the Eaton Estate (to-day’s King Campus of Seneca College) and Sir Henry Pellet’s farm at Mary Lake while the Thousand Island moved private cars to their downtown station. Interesting.

    • Hi Daniel:
      My gut feeling is the private car movements would’ve been before my chosen modelling time. That said, if I find a suitable car in S scale, I could certainly model the operation on occasion.

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