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Apparently the next Extreme Trains show, 11/18/08, will be about Ringling Bros. this triggered old memories. My first experience was in late 40’s when at the crack of dawn my dad took me down to observe the arrival of the Ringling Bros. & Barnum & Bailey Circus trains. I remember the steam engines pulling the freight and passenger cars into the yard. As clear to me today as back then, parking in the yard with the old coaling tower on the left and the round house on the right. Watching the off load of the trucks and wagons. The ramps at the end of the train flat car with the cable wrapped around the two steel posts. The man that would hook the cable to the ring on the back of the wagons just before the wagon went down the ramp. The squeal of the cable on the posts controlling the wagons. The impressive bull dog on the hood of the brightly painted Mac trucks with there chain drives pulling the wagons to the circus set up site. Being hired to help put up the big top. Pulling out the canvas. The men with there needles and thread repairing the rips from the last show while we lashed the sections of canvas together. Using elephants to pull the canvas up the main support posts. Receiving a free circus pass for the work. Thank god I can still line up my chromosomes to enjoy old train memories like this.:)
If only I had a video camera back then.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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PT Barnum and Jumbo

I live in London-St. Thomas, Ontario Canada. In St. Thomas, they have a full size statue of 'Jumbo' the elephant. Apparently back in 1885 when P.T Barnum came to town, Jumbo ran away and was hit by a locomotive. I wonder if they will mention anything abot that... ? St. Thomas for a time was known as 'the railway capital', being that over 20 major lines passed through it. No wonder poor Jumbo got hit.
 

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I live in London-St. Thomas, Ontario Canada. In St. Thomas, they have a full size statue of 'Jumbo' the elephant. Apparently back in 1885 when P.T Barnum came to town, Jumbo ran away and was hit by a locomotive. I wonder if they will mention anything abot that... ? St. Thomas for a time was known as 'the railway capital', being that over 20 major lines passed through it. No wonder poor Jumbo got hit.
Good ol Jumbo.. my family has lots of roots in St Thomas (McCormick) so I visit every now and then.. got a pic of me and Jumbo this summer:



My great Uncle would tell me that in it's heyday, there would be a train running through St Thomas every 8 minutes, no exaggeration :)
 
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