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Bangor and Aroostook railroad in the 40
Bangor and Aroostook railroad in the 40's 50's and early 60's
Published: 2013/09/04
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor and aroostook tour 1990-91
Bangor and aroostook tour 1990-91
Published: 2013/05/28
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor and Aroostook Stations and Structures Preview
Bangor and Aroostook Stations and Structures Preview
Published: 2013/01/20
Channel: Kathy Melvin
1993 Bangor and Aroostook Searsport Train
1993 Bangor and Aroostook Searsport Train
Published: 2008/12/10
Channel: Turbo231
Bangor and Aroostook Railroad "Geep Special" - Pan Am POSE
Bangor and Aroostook Railroad "Geep Special" - Pan Am POSE
Published: 2014/10/10
Channel: Signal Hill Productions
Bangor and Aroostook railroad Wreck Recovery at Milo Maine
Bangor and Aroostook railroad Wreck Recovery at Milo Maine
Published: 2012/08/26
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor and Aroostook railroad freight train at oakfield station in may 1991
Bangor and Aroostook railroad freight train at oakfield station in may 1991
Published: 2012/08/18
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Northern Maine Railway Train
Northern Maine Railway Train
Published: 2016/10/03
Channel: WFKTV- 4
BAR BL2
BAR BL2's F3a's and more Northern Maine Jct. 08/04/1980
Published: 2011/06/05
Channel: nhrrman
Ex Bangor & Aroostook GP7u On POED At Montague Station. 11/24/14
Ex Bangor & Aroostook GP7u On POED At Montague Station. 11/24/14
Published: 2014/11/25
Channel: Brian4449
Bangor and Aroostook woodchip cars
Bangor and Aroostook woodchip cars
Published: 2012/10/01
Channel: mk4inc
Bangor and Aroostook derailment aftermath and cleanup Jan 1992
Bangor and Aroostook derailment aftermath and cleanup Jan 1992
Published: 2012/08/29
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Leads Job 1 - 12/29/2016
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Leads Job 1 - 12/29/2016
Published: 2016/12/31
Channel: RailFanCam3071
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Unit Leads Job 1 - 6/16/2017
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Unit Leads Job 1 - 6/16/2017
Published: 2017/06/19
Channel: RailFanCam3071
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Unit Leads Job 1 - 1/6/2017
Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Unit Leads Job 1 - 1/6/2017
Published: 2017/01/12
Channel: RailFanCam3071
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK
Published: 2015/08/19
Channel: YABBA DABBA DU
BAR F3A #502 in "Heritage" scheme Searsport to Brownville,ME 08/17/1991
BAR F3A #502 in "Heritage" scheme Searsport to Brownville,ME 08/17/1991
Published: 2011/09/10
Channel: nhrrman
Fallen Flags: Bangor & Aroostook - Northern Maine Junction Tribute
Fallen Flags: Bangor & Aroostook - Northern Maine Junction Tribute
Published: 2009/06/07
Channel: Railroads Across Maine
BIG IRON at the Bangor and Aroostook Derby shops in the 1960
BIG IRON at the Bangor and Aroostook Derby shops in the 1960's
Published: 2012/08/24
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
bangor and aroostook tribute.
bangor and aroostook tribute.
Published: 2016/05/17
Channel: bostonandmainedigger
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK GP7 #69 yard move
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK GP7 #69 yard move
Published: 2012/02/19
Channel: Railroads Across Maine
[HD] CSX and Amtrak in the Pioneer Valley, Feat. Ex- Bangor and Aroostook: 10/11/14
[HD] CSX and Amtrak in the Pioneer Valley, Feat. Ex- Bangor and Aroostook: 10/11/14
Published: 2014/11/16
Channel: conrail4129
Bangor and Aroostook Motorcar 62 First Start - 5-11-14
Bangor and Aroostook Motorcar 62 First Start - 5-11-14
Published: 2014/05/12
Channel: Joey Kelley
Bangor and aroostook F3A # 502 cabrides and much more
Bangor and aroostook F3A # 502 cabrides and much more
Published: 2012/08/18
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor & Aroostook GP7 #62 switching at Searsport yard
Bangor & Aroostook GP7 #62 switching at Searsport yard
Published: 2012/10/27
Channel: Railroads Across Maine
Bangor & Aroostook BL2 Diesel Locomotive 557 Walk-through
Bangor & Aroostook BL2 Diesel Locomotive 557 Walk-through
Published: 2008/08/09
Channel: Turbo231
BAR Clip
BAR Clip
Published: 2016/03/09
Channel: Classic Railroad Videos
CMQ Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Engine Leads Job 2 - 11/26/2016
CMQ Bangor & Aroostook Heritage Engine Leads Job 2 - 11/26/2016
Published: 2016/11/27
Channel: RailFanCam3071
BAR1996
BAR1996
Published: 2012/01/14
Channel: MaineLines
Bangor and aroostook railroad F3 #502 special sneek peek at a cabride more to come!!
Bangor and aroostook railroad F3 #502 special sneek peek at a cabride more to come!!
Published: 2012/08/16
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad
Published: 2012/04/28
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
Vintage Bangor & Aroostook RR with Blues soundtrack
Vintage Bangor & Aroostook RR with Blues soundtrack
Published: 2013/03/15
Channel: nhrrman
Clip 1
Clip 1
Published: 2013/04/03
Channel: Glady Gordon
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 6
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 6
Published: 2014/01/01
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 2
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 2
Published: 2012/05/14
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
Moose River Railroad video
Moose River Railroad video
Published: 2011/11/21
Channel: Earl Brechlin
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 3
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 3
Published: 2012/08/12
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
Bangor and Aroostook model Railroad
Bangor and Aroostook model Railroad
Published: 2016/10/16
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK EMD F3A #49
BANGOR AND AROOSTOOK EMD F3A #49
Published: 2010/02/07
Channel: Railroads Across Maine
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 4
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 4
Published: 2013/05/25
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
Bangor and Aroostook M.O.W. crews at work in the 1960
Bangor and Aroostook M.O.W. crews at work in the 1960's
Published: 2012/08/23
Channel: Northern Maine Productions
Bangor & Aroostook #98 GP38 on start up
Bangor & Aroostook #98 GP38 on start up
Published: 2015/08/30
Channel: dicko6833
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 5
N Scale Bangor and Aroostook Railroad Part 5
Published: 2013/11/02
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
Bangor & Aroostook 1954
Bangor & Aroostook 1954
Published: 2010/02/26
Channel: FairportFriedy
Bangor and Aroostook RR
Bangor and Aroostook RR
Published: 2016/03/26
Channel: jeffrey duplessis
MTH PREMIER BANGOR & AROOSTOOK BL-2 #57 WITH SOME STATE OF MAINE BOX  & REFRIGERATOR
MTH PREMIER BANGOR & AROOSTOOK BL-2 #57 WITH SOME STATE OF MAINE BOX & REFRIGERATOR
Published: 2013/05/09
Channel: PorvooModelRailways
Richard Sprague Interview.mpg
Richard Sprague Interview.mpg
Published: 2010/06/04
Channel: UpNorthMagazine
2015 NMRA Bangor & Aroostook F
2015 NMRA Bangor & Aroostook F
Published: 2015/09/15
Channel: Greg Blau
BL 2 Branch Line Locomotive
BL 2 Branch Line Locomotive
Published: 2016/02/17
Channel: Cole Land Transportation Museum
Bangor & Aroostook gp38 #84
Bangor & Aroostook gp38 #84
Published: 2014/01/28
Channel: aspenGF8
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Bangor and Aroostook Railroad
Bangor Aroostook Logo 1918.jpg
Bangor and Aroostook Aroostook Flyer circa 1950s.JPG
The railroad's Aroostook Flyer passenger train, c. 1950s
Reporting mark BAR
Locale Maine
Dates of operation 1891 (1891)–2003 (2003)
Successor Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Headquarters Bangor, Maine

The Bangor and Aroostook Railroad (reporting mark BAR) was a United States railroad company that brought rail service to Aroostook County in northern Maine. Brightly painted BAR box cars attracted national attention in the 1950s. First-generation diesel locomotives operated on BAR until they were museum pieces. The economic downturn of the 1980s coupled with the departure of heavy industry from northern Maine forced the railroad to seek a buyer and end operations in 2003.

History[edit]

Potatoes were important enough to the railroad that men were hired to tend to them during shipment. This worker's pass entitled him to a trip back to his hometown.

The company was incorporated in 1891 to combine the lines of the former Bangor and Piscataquis Railroad and the Bangor and Katahdin Iron Works Railway. It was based in Bangor and lines extended from there to Oakfield and Houlton in 1894. The line was extended from Houlton to Fort Fairfield and Caribou in 1895. A parallel branch line was extended from Oakfield to Ashland in 1896. A branch was built from Caribou to Limestone in 1897, and the main line extended from Caribou to Van Buren in 1899. The Ashland Branch was extended to Fort Kent in 1902. A southern extension was completed in 1905 through Northern Maine Junction to Searsport on Penobscot Bay. The Medford Cutoff from Packard to South Lagrange was completed in 1907; and a branch was built from Millinocket to a new paper mill in East Millinocket. Rails were extended up the Saint John River from Van Buren through Madawaska and Fort Kent to St. Francis in 1910; and Mapleton was connected to Stockholm and Presque Isle on the main line, and to Squa Pan on the Ashland branch. An international bridge was constructed over the Saint John River between Van Buren and St. Leonard, NB in 1915 to connect with the Canadian Pacific Railway and National Transcontinental Railway (later merged into the Canadian National Railway).[1]

BAR began hauling potatoes in heated box cars in 1895.[2] Potatoes provided a stable income source through the great depression, and provided 50% of the railroad's revenue following World War II.[3] BAR had the 2nd largest United States railroad-owned reefer fleet (after Santa Fe) during the 1950s.[4] BAR made an arrangement with Pacific Fruit Express whereby PFE reefers shipped Maine potatoes during winter months and BAR reefers carried California produce during the summer and autumn.[5] While potatoes started moving by truck following completion of the Interstate Highway System into northern Maine in the 1960s, what actually resulted in the railroad losing its potato business forever was the Penn Central Transportation Company (PC), whose interchange service became so bad during the winter of 1969–70 that a large portion of the 1969 potato crop was spoiled by freezing when car heaters ran out of fuel. The claims process against PC was not resolved prior to PC's bankruptcy declaration the following June. As a result, several potato farms went out of business; and those that survived distrusted rail service and never returned to using the railroad.[6]

Inbound chemicals and outbound paper from mills on the Penobscot River at Millinocket and East Millinocket were major revenue sources for the BAR from 1900.[7] Another paper mill was built in Madawaska in 1925.[8] Pulpwood and wood chips to the paper mills became increasingly important as potato loadings declined.[9] The remote port facilities at Searsport were a preferred loading point for ammunition during World War II;[10] and BAR transported heating coal and aircraft fuel to Loring AFB for Strategic Air Command bombers through the Cold War. BAR painted 2,500 box cars in the red, white and blue colors of the US flag during the 1950s. A less expensive oxide red paint scheme with large white reporting marks was adopted during the Vietnam War.[11]

The line from Brownville Junction to Katahdin Iron Works was abandoned in 1922, but the rails remained in place until 1933.[12]

Postwar[edit]

BAR passenger train service ended in 1961.[13] Bus service, which began in 1936, continued with buses lettered for Bangor and Aroostook running on Greyhound Lines schedules between Aroostook County and New York City's Port Authority Bus Terminal until 1984.[14] The Greenville branch was dismantled from 1962 to 1964.[15] Several Aroostook County segments were abandoned when potato traffic disappeared in the 1970s.

Decline and sale[edit]

In 1995, the BAR was acquired by Iron Road Railways. In 2002, the company was declared bankrupt, and in 2003 its lines were sold to Rail World, Inc., which initially incorporated them into the newly formed Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway. In 2010, the 233 miles (375 km) of track from Millinocket north to the Canada–US border were sold to the state of Maine for $20 million[16] to be operated by Irving's Maine Northern Railway. MM&A kept the line from the Millinocket paper mills south to Searsport; after its 2013 Lac-Mégantic derailment and bankruptcy, the line was sold to Fortress Investments as the Central Maine and Quebec Railway.

Rolling stock[edit]

BAR EMD BL2 No. 56 at Northern Maine Junction in 1970

The Bangor and Aroostook rostered some 150 different steam locomotives over its history. Most were built by the Manchester Locomotive Works or the American Locomotive Company (ALCO), which absorbed Manchester in 1901. The most popular type was the 4-6-0, with nearly 60.[17] Diesels began arriving in the late 1940s; general purpose types such as the EMD GP7 and EMD GP38 were common. Unusually, the BAR also rostered eight EMD BL2 "branch line" locomotives, precursors to EMD's GPs. Many first-generation diesels remained in operation on the BAR until they were museum pieces.[18] In the 1950s its red, white, and blue boxcars attracted national attention.[19]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 54
  2. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 49
  3. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 105
  4. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 117
  5. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 109
  6. ^ Melvin, George F. (2010). Bangor and Aroostook in Color volume 2. Morning Sun Books. p. 32. ISBN 1-58248-285-3. 
  7. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, pp. 23–26
  8. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 57
  9. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 147
  10. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, pp. 87–89
  11. ^ Sweetland 1994, pp. 9–15
  12. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 61
  13. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 64
  14. ^ Angier, Jerry Classic Trains (Winter 2009) Kalmbach Publishing pp.18-21
  15. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, p. 137
  16. ^ "Maine reaches deal to buy imperiled rail lines". Trains Magazine. 20 October 2010. Retrieved 20 October 2010. 
  17. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, pp. 253–261
  18. ^ Angier & Cleaves 1986, pp. 262–266
  19. ^ Sweetland 1994, p. 4

References[edit]

  • Angier, Jerry; Cleaves, Herb (1986). Bangor and Aroostook, the Maine Railroad. Littleton, MA: Flying Yankee Enterprises. ISBN 0-9615574-2-7. 
  • Angier, Jerry (2004). Bangor and Aroostook RR in Color. Morning Sun Books. ISBN 1-58248-134-2. 
  • Johnson, Ron (1983). Bangor & Aroostook Railroad From Potatoes to Pulp and Paper. Portland, ME: Portland Litho. 
  • Sweetland, David R. (1994). Northern New England Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment. Morning Sun Books. ISBN 1-878887-36-4. 

External links[edit]

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