Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR
Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR
Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR
Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR

Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR

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Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR
 
Industries & Operations of the Maine Two-Foot Gauge Railroads Vol 8 B&SR
Operations on the B&SR, Kennebec Central, WW&F and Monson
Soft Cover
Copyright 1997
By Peter S. Barney
84 pages
The Kennebec Central Railroad served the National Soldiers' Home at Togus and was built essentially to transport the soldiers and their families from Randolph, across the Kennebec River from Gardiner, to Togus by five miles of two-foot gauge track.
On Sundays, there were band concerts on the Togus Common which was in the center of the immediate Home compound. Trains ran often, carrying families from "Gardiner" to the Home and back. So many were carried and the business so obviously good, that the Androsgoggin and Kennebec Street Railway built a line to Togus and erected a small trolley depot just outside the main gates to the Home. This competition continued a few years until the private automobile arrived in central Maine.
The line also carried some commissary supplies as the Home was a year round operation and very much a small community in the 1890's. By 1905, the Federal Government, which operated Togus, awarded the coal carrying contract for the Home's furnaces to the railroad to haul coal from dockside barges to the coal bins at the Home. (The railroad may have been already carrying this coal as there was an earlier coal bin located on the dockside near the railroad yard.)
While the number of people declined riding the trains throughout the 1920's as automobiles made the Sunday concerts easier to visit and better roads were developed around the Randolph area, the coal contract kept the railroad in business. In June 1929, the contract was awarded to a trucking firm and the railroad ceased operations immediately.

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