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Nostalgia & History > Simplicity - Soo Line

Date: 12/02/19 15:29
Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: refarkas

An unknown photographer took this photo of the Soo Line station in Centuria, Wisconsin in late 1967. While not technically first-class, this has a certain beauty.

Date: 12/02/19 15:56
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: cr7998

Thanks for sharing.  It does indeed have a certain beauty and atmosphere.  Looking at this picture, I can just imagine a lonely station agent, late at night, playing chess by telegraph key with other agents on the line, which some of them did to stay awake.  This station was on the line between the Twin Cities and Superior/Duluth.  It was not one of the Soo Line's busier routes, and was mostly abandoned after Soo Line got trackage rights over the BN.  Most of the abandoned right of way is now the Gandy Dancer Trail or the Ice Age Trail.  


Date: 12/02/19 16:03
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: refarkas

Thanks for the information about the station.

Date: 12/02/19 17:31
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: wp1801

A classic scene!

Date: 12/02/19 20:01
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: GPutz

Atmosphere: that's it.  Gerry

Date: 12/02/19 21:03
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: SooGuy64

Thanks for the memories as I grew up on the Soo in a small prairie town on the Twin Cities-Winnipeg main line called Ottertail.  Your image captures a typical Soo Line station of that era.  Two stories, the upper one the living quarters for the station master.  The lower level has the passenger waiting room closest to you.  In the middle is the bay window for the station master which gave him a clear view of the track in both directions.  On the far end was the freight room with the always present Railway Express cart.. 

As a kid I remember the local freight stopping to drop off a case or two of dry goods for the local grocery store in that freight room.  It's like you can almost see the ghosts of bygone days there, of steam locomotives and EMD F units pulling into the station to offload their passengers and freight, of station masters standing on the platform to pass train orders to the conductor of a passing train, of a red caboose leaving the station with the brakeman standing on the platform looking back towards you.

You also captured the other small details that almost made it come to life.  To the right of the station is the outhouse.  I've wondered if many of the stations had indoor plumbing?  On the far left is a small shed, probably the shed for the local track crew where they kept their speeder.  My uncle worker for the Soo as a section hand and I was privileged to be able to ride with them on occasion.  All this has faded to memory now, there are no more stations.  Everything they represented and stood for are all gone.  Just the same, Thank You again for the memories.  May it do likewise for others.

Date: 12/03/19 10:52
Re: Simplicity - Soo Line
Author: Roadjob

Love the whole feel to this shot...well done!

Bill Rettberg
Bel Air, MD
commercial photography

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