Train days

Care to reminisce with me for a moment? This came to my mind at the mention of the train whistle in Newberry.

I was raised in a farm near Roaring Branch. Nearby was a railroad crossing. The train whistle was our clock. My dad arose at 6 a.m. to go to the barn to do chores. At noon we ate. At 4 p.m., we came in from the fields to fire up the stove to cook the “taters” for supper or come home from sledriding or swimming to do chores. At 9 p.m. was bedtime. Sometimes the engineer had to have the fireman put on more coal to get more energy to go up the next hill. The jerking of the train and constant signal whistling disturbed your sleep.

The cars were a delight for us children to see. We called them “lolly pops.” We liked to wave to them.

Well, most of the trains are gone. The ’72 flood took out the Elmira Branch but I understand some nice like and walking trails had been made on the deserted tracks.

Lenora Stackhouse