Significant Cornwall Railway Dates
The following is a list of important dates in railway history for Cornwall, Ontario. Enjoy!
1846 – Montreal & Kingston Railroad was created to build a line of rails from Montreal to Kingston.
1851, August 30 – the Montreal & Kingston was renamed to the Montreal & Kingston Railway and placed under the control of the St. Lawrence & Atlantic Railroad (operating at that time from Longueuil to St-Hyacinthe).
1851, August 30 – the Canadian Main Line was incorporated to connect the eastern British Colonies together with a railway.
1852, November 10 – the Canadian Main Line was split into two companies, the Grand Trunk Railway of Canada East and the Grand Trunk Railway of Canada, the latter was to build rails from Montreal to Toronto, running approximately 3 to 5 miles north of the St. Lawrence River. The Montreal & Kingston was repealed in favour of the Grand Trunk project.
1853, July 15 – the two Grand Trunk companies merged together with the St. Lawrence & Atlantic line as well as with the companies of the Toronto & Guelph Railway, the Grand Junction Railroad and the Quebec & Richmond Railway to become the Grand Trunk Railway.
1855, November 19 – Grand Trunk opened through Cornwall from Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue to Brockville in broad gauge. A passenger train originating at Brockville to Montreal (nos. 25 and 26) became known as “the Moccasin” for the Native Americans whom used that train to sell their wares in the city. Cornwall had a station (situated on the north side of Ninth Street East where Sydney Street was extended), engine house, freight house and dining hall.
1856, October 27 – Grand Trunk completed its line between Toronto and Montreal. The first through train consisted of 3 first class and 3 second class coaches, ran from Montreal (Point St. Charles) to Toronto (Don Station) and a similar train made the journey in the opposite direction. Departure was at 07:00 from Montreal and 07:30 from Toronto. The trains passed in the vicinity of Kingston Junction where a stop of 30 minutes occurred for lunch. The journey took 14 hours.
1873, October 4 – Grand Trunk converted to standard gauged west of Montreal, which including the rails through Cornwall.
1882 – the Cornwall Junction Railway was created to build from Cornwall to Smiths Falls and then to Perth or Carleton Place.
1882, May 17 – the Ontario Pacific Railway was created to build from Cornwall to Ottawa and on to French River, with branch lines from Cornwall running to Smiths Falls and Moira.
1883, February 2 – the Eastern Ontario Railway was created to build from Cornwall to Ottawa, with branch lines from Berwick to L’Orignal and from Newington to Smiths Falls and end at Carleton Place. This line was never built but merely a competing line to the Ontario Pacific.
1883, May 25 – the Ontario Pacific charter was granted new lines. The main line was to continue from French River to Sault Ste. Marie while the one branch line would leave at Newington instead of Cornwall and continue from Smiths Falls to Almonte. A third branch was added to run off from between Renfrew and Eganville to Pembroke.
1885 – Grand Trunk built an addition to the Cornwall station building on the east side, which became offices for the Customs Officer and freight agent.
1885, November 11 – papers were filed to incorporate the Cornwall Street Railway Company. This company was to built street tram lines for horse drawn street cars as a transit service.
1886, September 2 – talk of the Cornwall Junction to link Cornwall with the Canadian Pacific at the nearest point possible instead of going to Smiths Falls began. This project was not built.
1887, June 23 – the Prescott County Railway was created to build three lines, one running between Glen Robertson to Hawkesbury with a branch to Caledonia Springs, the second from Glen Robertson to Cornwall and the third from Limoges to Rockland.
1889 – Grand Trunk double tracked their main line from Bainsville to Cornwall.
1889 – Poor’s Manual of 1889 reports that Cornwall Street Railway was operating over 3 miles of track and owned four cars and two steam motors. No reference to this has been found in local documentation except for a report by a town citizen that stated street cars for the street railway had sat in the Grand Trunk yards for years after their arrival, unused, then one day they simply vanished.
1890 – Grand Trunk double tracked their main line from Cornwall to Morrisburg.
1890, April – the Prescott County was renamed to the Central Counties Railway.
1893, May 4 – Grand Trunk renamed to Grand Trunk Railway of Canada.
1895, February 22 – W.C. Young, editor of the Cornwall Freeholder, proposed to create a railway company to build from Cornwall to South Indian (Limoges) for the purpose of racing the Ontario Pacific in which company would be built first. This proposal never was incorporated.
1896 – a 50,000 gallon water tank was erected at the Grand Trunk station grounds in Cornwall.
1896, March 25 – Cornwall Street Railway was repealed in favour of a newly incorporated company, the Cornwall Electric Street Railway, having the same purpose only using electrically powered street cars instead of horse drawn ones.
1896, June 30 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway opened with lines running on Pitt Street from 9th to Water; 2nd from Cumberland to Marlborough; Marlborough from 2nd to Water/Montreal; and Water from Pitt to Marlborough and on Montreal to St. Lawrence Park. There was also trackage from the car barns, which were on the north side of Water Street between Pitt and Sydney Streets. The company had purchased four new street cars from Peterborough and were numbered 5 through 8.
1896, October- Cornwall Electric Street Railway opened on 3rd Street West from Pitt Street to the Victoria Arena, which was between Pitt and Augustus Streets.
1896, November 26 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway opened on 2nd Street West from Pitt Street to Brookdale Avenue and entered the yard of the Toronto Paper Mill.
1897 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway purchased two new street cars from Peterborough, numbered 9 and 10.
1897, May 21 – the Ontario Pacific became The Ottawa & New York Railway and was to build from the border at Cornwall to Ottawa.
1897, July 28 – the Cornwall Bridge Company created to build the south channel bridge that will link the New York & Ottawa Railroad with the Ottawa & New York, as well as the Racquette River crossing.
1898 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway made an agreement with Grand Trunk and Ottawa & New York to operate a freight service that would take cars from their yards and bring them to the businesses in town. The company’s bonds were slowly being purchased by Sun Life Assurance Company.
1898 – Central Counties abandoned the proposed line between Glen Robertson to Cornwall.
1898, June 13 – The Ottawa & New York was purchased by the New York & Ottawa and dropped “The” from their title.
1898, July 29 – the Ottawa & New York opened from Cornwall to Ottawa having trackage rights over the Montreal & Ottawa at Hurdman to their freight yard. The Cornwall station was on the north side of 2nd Street West between Hoople Avenue and Hickory Street. Cornwall Electric Street Railway opened a section of track that looped around the Toronto Paper Mill and Smithville to the new rail yard so that they could reach the station grounds as well as had a wye on the east side of the bridge crossing that continued under it and ended along the Cornwall Canal at Frontenac Street.
1898, August 14 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway ran a special on this date, which was a Sunday, and was in breach of their charter. The company suspended services sometime after this date, leaving two street cars purchased from the Ottawa Electric Railway (Nos. 14 & 16) that had arrived by then to stay in the Ottawa & New York switch yard.
1898, September 6 – pier 2 of the South Ottawa & New York Railway Bridge collapsed bringing down the two American trusses and killing 15 workers. This is Cornwall’s worst disaster to include loss of life.
1899, April 18 – the New York & Ottawa Bridge Company created to run the bridge crossing that would link the New York & Ottawa to the Ottawa & New York.
1899, June 2 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway restarted services and picked up the street cars in the Ottawa & New York yard, which needed some maintenance before going into service due to sitting out in the open for so long. S.W. Bradley, formally of the Hull Electric Company, was appointed the superintendent. A contract to move mail from the Grand Trunk station to the post office at 2nd and Pitt Streets was agreed upon. The company also purchased their first freight motor from Baldwin-Westinghouse, numbering it 12, as well as a sweeper from the Montreal Street Railway as their no. 1.
1900 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway purchased their second motor, a wood box, from the Baldwin-Westinghouse Company, numbering it 26.
1900, April 25 – the New York & Ottawa went into receivership.
1900, October 1 – the Ottawa & New York Railway Bridges opened, connecting Ottawa & New York to New York & Ottawa. Ottawa & New York owned the north channel crossing while Cornwall Bridge Company owned the south channel one.
1900, November 1 – the New York & Ottawa Bridge Company leased the bridges from the Ottawa & New York and Cornwall Bridge Company.
1901, June 10 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway was foreclosed on.
1902 – the Ontario Electric Railway was created to build an electric railway from Cornwall to Toronto.
1902, April 18 – Cornwall Electric Street Railway was renamed Cornwall Street Railway, Light & Power Company, owned fully by Sun Life Assurance Company. Added to its charter was the power to supply electricity to the town of Cornwall.
1903 – a 49 foot, 8 inch long turntable was built in Cornwall for the Grand Trunk.
1904, December 22 – the New York & Ottawa was sold at an auction held in Utica by New York Central & Hudson River Railroad interests.
1905 – Sun Life Assurance Company purchased the Stormont Electric Light & Power Company and placed its day by day operations under the Cornwall Street Railway Board of Managers. Cornwall Street Railway purchased a sweeper from the Montreal Park & Island Railway as their no. 2.
1905 – The Toronto Railway refused to allow Ontario Electric Railway to enter Toronto on their rails, so the charter went dormant.
1905, January 19 – the New York & Ottawa Railroad was renamed to New York & Ottawa Railway.
1905, February 1 – the New York Central & Hudson River began a lease on the New York & Ottawa, along with the Ottawa & New York.
1905, June 30 – Cornwall Street Railway went on strike for a day.
1906, July 22 – Grand Trunk changed from left to right hand running on double track sections. The change involved considerable alteration in crossovers, switches and semaphore signals.
1906, December 12 – the New York Central & Hudson River began to operate the New York & Ottawa and Ottawa & New York.
1908, June 23 – the swing span of the North Ottawa & New York Railway Bridge collapsed after the Cornwall Canal experienced a break in its banks just to the west of the supporting pier.
1908, August 4 – a temporary swing span was put into operation for the Ottawa & New York to cross the Cornwall Canal.
1909 – the Ontario Electric Railway was renamed to the Eastern Ontario Electric Railway and was still to build from Cornwall to Toronto an electrically powered railway. This was never built.
1909 – The Ottawa & St. Lawrence Electric Railway was created to built from the Ontario/Quebec border along the St. Lawrence River through Cornwall, Brockville, Athens and end at Perth with a branch from Morrisburg to Ottawa.
1909, May – a new swing span was put into operation over the Cornwall Canal for the Ottawa & New York.
1910 – the Cornwall & Hawkesbury Railway was created to build from Cornwall through Martintown and Alexandria to Hawkesbury and connect to Canadian Pacific’s line running along the north shore of the Ottawa River between Calumet and Grenville.
1912, May – the Glengarry & Stormont Railway was created to link Cornwall with Canadian Pacific’s Toronto – Montreal line as well as have branches to Martintown, Williamstown and Lancaster. This was favoured over the Cornwall & Hawkesbury project.
1913, March 7 – the New York & Ottawa merged into the New York Central & Hudson River.
1913, May 6 – the Ottawa & St. Lawrence Electric absorbed the North Lanark Railway, a company that was to link the rail line between Kingston and Renfrew to Ottawa.
1913, May 8 – the Glengarry & Stormont was reincorporated to build from St-Polycarpe Junction through Williamstown to Cornwall.
1914 – the Cornwall & Hawkesbury Railway was reincorporated. It was never built.
1914, July 20 – New York Central & Hudson River was renamed to New York Central Railroad.
1914, September 30 – the Ottawa & St. Lawrence Electric began construction in Russell. Only this initial work in the town was done and the project was abandoned.
1914, December 23 – New York Central Railroad renamed to New York Central Lines.
1915 – Cornwall Street Railway retired street cars Nos. 14 and 16.
1915, May 24 – the Glengarry & Stormont was opened from Cornwall to St-Polycarpe Junction, just west of De Beaujeu in Quebec on the Canadian Pacific main line. The station in Cornwall was on the northeast corner of Pitt Street and Sixth Street East while the freight facilities were a block away, the yard housing a large freight shed on Sixth Street East at Amelia Street while the turntable, engine house, water spout and ash pit, were along Adolphus Street.
1915, June 1 – the Glengarry & Stormont was leased for 99 years to the Canadian Pacific, whom operated it as their Cornwall Subdivision.
1916 – Cornwall Street Railway rebuilt their original street cars to closed cars, renumbering them. Nos. 5 became 42; 6 to 45; 7 to 43; 8 to 46; 9 to 44; and 10 to 47.
1917, September 6 – the New York & Ottawa Bridge Company was dissolved and the Cornwall Bridge Company merged into New York Central.
1919 – Bob McCleary resigns as Cornwall station agent and is replaced with his brother-in-law Harold Bouck, whom was agent at Cornwall Junction.
1919, November 5 – Grand Trunk was foreclosed on and was slowly taken over by Canadian National Railways.
1920 – Cornwall Street Railway scrapped street cars Nos. 14 and 16.
1920, May 21 – Grand Trunk became the property of the Canadian Government.
1923 – Cornwall Street Railway extended their Montreal Road line from the turn into St. Lawrence Park to the newly opened Courtaulds Canada Limited plant.
1923, January 30 – Grand Trunk was merged into Canadian National.
1926 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two street cars from the St. Thomas Municipal Railway, keeping the numbers of 36 and 38.
1927 – Cornwall Street Railway built a straight line along 2nd Street West from Brookdale Avenue straight to the New York Central station grounds, avoiding the loop around the paper mill. They purchased three street cars from the Toronto Transportation Commission, numbering them as 18, 20 and a second 16
1928 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased a street car from the Department of Plant & Structures in New York City, numbering it 15 and a freight motor from the Niagara St. Catharines & Toronto Railway as number 11.
1929 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two street cars from United Railways & Electric Company in Baltimore, numbering them 17 and 19. They also purchased two from Fairchance & Smithfield Traction Company in Uniontown, PA, numbering them to 21 and 22. They scrapped nos. 42 (the trucks from this one went to line car no. 5), 43, 44 and 47.
1930 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two street cars from Wisconsin Public Service in Green Bay, numbering them 23 and 24. They scrapped nos. 45 and 46 and sweeper no. 1. Their freight motor 12 was rebuilt as plow no. 4 while their sweeper no. 2 was renumbered to 1 after receiving a second no. 2 from the Kingston Portsmouth & Cataraqui Railway.
1930 – The Cornwall Bridge Company was created to build a bridge from Cornwall to St. Regis for vehicles, pedestrians and street cars. This was not accomplished.
1931 – Cornwall Street Railway opened their Belt Line, which started on Water Street from Pitt Street going westwards to Cumberland Street, east on 2nd Street West and then down Pitt Street.
1931, November 23 – the Cornwall-Northern New York International Bridge Company was created to handle the planking and operation of vehicles over the New York Central Bridges in Cornwall.
1932 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased a freight motor from the Niagara St. Catharines & Toronto Railway, numbering it 7 after renting out freight motor 26 to Courtaulds.
1933 – after the worst fire to hit the business district of Pitt Street, Cornwall Street Railway abandons their line along Third Street West that went into the now burned out Victoria Arena.
1934 – Cornwall Street Railway extended the Belt Line, going further up Cumberland Street to 7th Street West and then to Pitt Street. With the extension came the purchase of more street cars from Eastern Pennsylvania Railways Nos. 12 and 13 as well as a second No. 14. Also purchased was freight motor No. 8 from an unknown source and sweeper 3 from the Williamsport Railways. Tower car no. 5 was built using parts from the scrapped street car no. 42.
1934, May 17 – the New York Central Bridges opened to automobile traffic to share the bridge with trains. The Cornwall-Northern New York International Bridge Company operated the bridge and collected the tolls.
1934, June 30 – official opening ceremonies for the Cornwall bridge crossing, attended and opened by the Governor-General of Canada. The bridge system was renamed to the Roosevelt International Bridges.
1935 – Cornwall Street Railway retired freight motor no. 8. To take its place as the second no. 8, a freight motor was purchased from the Niagara St. Catharines & Toronto Railway.
1935, July 1 – New York Central Lines renamed New York Central System.
1936 – Canadian National received permission to open and operate over a spur to the Beach Furniture factory on Ninth Street.
1937 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased a street car from Eastern Massachusetts Street Railway, renumbering it to 25.
1938 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased three street cars from Jamestown Street Railway in Jamestown, NY, numbering them 26 to 28. They also constructed a line on Cumberland Street from 7th Street West to the Canadian National line at 9th Street West and followed along to connect to their system at Pitt Street.
1939 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased four street cars from Northern Texas Traction Company in Fort Worth, numbering them as 29 to 32.
1939, May 21 – King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, on their tour of Canada by train, passed through Cornwall on their eastbound trip. The royal couple stood on the observation platform of the last car to wave to all the Cornwallites as the train slowed to go through the city.
1941 – Cornwall Street Railway opened a new freight line that ran on 7th Street West from Cumberland Street to Brookdale Avenue and continued westward into the industrial sector that was in the western part of Cornwall. The line ended at the Defence Industries Limited mustard gas plant. A second line branched off this one just east of the New York Central crossing and connected to the line that entered the New York Central yard. Street cars Nos. 14, 21 and 23 were sold to Levis Tramways.
1942 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two street cars from the Wilkes-Barre Railway, numbering them 34 and 35. Also purchased from the Windsor Essex & Lake Shore Rapid Railway were two freight motors that became nos. 9 and 10.
1943 – Cornwall Street Railway 10 was not running properly and was scrapped for parts after the purchase of a replacement 10 from the Washington & Old Dominion Railway.
1943, January – Cornwall Street Railway experienced a one day strike.
1944 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased a freight motor from the Kansas City Kaw Valley & Western Railway, numbering it 6.
1945 – Cornwall Street Railway changed their paint scheme from the olive green and cream with blue trim livery to maroon and cream with yellow trim. They also began replacing the original 56 and 60 pound rail system with 105 pound T rails. They purchased two street cars from the Indiana Service Corporation in Fort Wayne, renumbering them 33 and 37, as well as E-10 from the Eastern Massachusetts Street Railway. Street car nos. 29 and 30 collided at Marlborough and 2nd Streets. Street car no. 31 was gutted by fire.
1945, October 11 – two and a half tons of used clothes that were donated to the National Clothing Collection Campaign bound for Europe had left Cornwall on the New York Central for Ottawa.
1946 – Cornwall Street Railway opened a new freight line that ran along the Canadian National line from the station grounds and crossed the Canadian Pacific line (this portion was built and owned by Canadian National), and then headed south to enter Courtaulds from the north end of their property. A passing siding was put in just north of the property for the street railway where they and Courtaulds exchanged cars. The street railway gave Courtaulds no. 7 to replace no. 26 that they kept off to a siding. No. 8 was converted into P-8 as a plow to replace plow no. 4 that was retired. A freight motor was purchased from the Aroostook Valley Railway and became the third no. 8.
1947 – Cornwall Street Railway scrapped street cars nos. 13, 16 and 20 and sweeper 1. They purchased another sweeper from the Hull Electric Company as their third no. 1. A new line was opened along the Canadian National westwards from Cumberland Street to just east of Cornwall Junction and a line from there running south to the paper mill. A junction between this line and the one to the Defence Industries Limited plant was made.
1947, June 22 – about 2,000 Cornwallites attended the Marian Congress in Ottawa, 1,350 had used the New York Central to get there and back.
1947, August – Cornwall Street Railway experienced a three day strike.
1947, September 2 – Cornwall Street Railway went on strike that lasted nearly a week. Several industries hired an industrial 0-4-0 saddle-tank steam locomotive to move cars to and from the rail yards as well as switching.
1948 – Cornwall Street Railway scrapped street cars nos. 12, 15 and 24, sweeper 2 and plow 4.
1948, April – Cornwall Street Railway purchased a freight motor from the Utah-Idaho Central Railroad, making it the second 12.
1948, April – Canadian National received permission to construct and operate a spur from the east side of their station grounds to a cement plant, which is today Lafarge Canada Inc.
1948, May 21 – Stormont Electric & Power Company merged into Cornwall Street Railway, Light & Power Company.
1948, July 8 – a Canadian Pacific engine had its throttle stuck and accidentally drove onto Cornwall Street Railway tracks and tipped over when it tried to negotiate the turn onto Pitt Street.
1949 – Canadian Pacific opened a connecting track from their line between Marlborough Street and McConnell Avenue eastward to the Cornwall Street Railway so that the company could gain access to the switch yard. The Roosevelt International Bridge Company took possession of the bridge crossing in Cornwall.
1949, June 8 – Cornwall Street Railway began using electrically powered busses (trolleys). Diesel fuelled ones would follow later.
1949, July 27 – Cornwall Street Railway operated street cars for the last time. Streetcar No. 29 was used, painted black with a midnight theme and featured superintendent W.J. Mitchell sitting on the car’s roof, dressed as Father Time. Much of the trackage on Pitt, 2nd, Marlborough, 7th, Water and Montreal were abandoned. Street cars that were scrapped were Nos. 17 to 19, 22, 25 to 28, 30, and 32 to 38. They were pushed into an empty lot off Cumberland Street and burned before they were cut up for the scrap metal. Nos. 29 and 31 were retired and stored.
1950 – Cornwall Street Railway converted the burned out street car no. 31 into the second maintenance car no. 4 and scrapped no. 11 after purchasing a replacement they numbered a second 11 from the Omaha Lincoln & Beatrice Railroad. Tower car 5 was also scrapped.
1951, July 17 – New York Central was given permission to abandon passenger service of the Ottawa Division, but was told that an alternate plan to restart the service under a six month basis was allowed if it was warranted.
1951, August 16 – New York Central suspended passenger service until the winter.
1951, November – New York Central restarted passenger service on the Ottawa Division on a six month basis.
1952 – Cornwall Street Railway converted stored street car no. 29 into a tower line car becoming the second no. 5. They sold freight motor no. 9 to A.A. Merrilees while purchasing two from the Niagara Junction Railway. One became their second 9 while the other was numbered 13 which was placed in storage for scrap use, the trucks immediately went to freight motor no. 6.
1952, April 27 – Canadian Pacific received permission to end passenger service on the Cornwall Subdivision.
1952, September 23 – Canadian Pacific ran the last passenger train on the Cornwall Subdivision.
1953 – a new exchange yard between Canadian Pacific and Cornwall Street Railway was opened along the Courtaulds line east of McConnell Avenue and south of the Canadian National line, replacing the original exchange tracks on the north side of Sixth Street East between Pitt Street and the Canadian Pacific yard.
1954, April 24 – the New York Central ran their last passenger train on the Ottawa Division.
1954, July 15 – the New York Central declared passenger service ended on the Ottawa Division.
1956 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two freight motors from the Springfield Terminal Railway, numbered as the second 7, which was never repainted to their livery, and 14.
1956, March – Canadian National received permission to open and operate over a spur from their main line to the power dam construction site, the company served was Iroquois Constructors.
1957 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased plow/leveller no. 3152 from the Montreal Transportation Commission and scrapped E-10.
1957, February 14 – New York Central operated their last train through Cornwall.
1957. March 22 – New York Central declared the Ottawa Division from Rooseveltown to Ottawa abandoned. The St. Lawrence Seaway Authority was given the line from the border to 2nd Street West in Cornwall. The sale did not include the bridges since the Roosevelt International Bridge Company now owned them.
1957, April – Canadian National purchased the New York Central line from Ottawa to 2nd Street West in Cornwall. The station was torn down in the 1960s.
1957, May 23 – the first Canadian National train (no. 441) operated over the relocated main line between Cornwall and Cardinal. The new station, that of the post-war design with a flat roof, was at the north end of Station Road, east of Pitt Street in city’s north end.
1957, June 8 – Canadian National began to tear up the abandoned New York Central line beginning at Crysler. The rails were reused in Montreal for their new hump yard.
1957, July 20 – the last through Canadian National train operated over the original Grand Trunk line between Cornwall and Cardinal. The Cornwall Junction station/tower was dismantled soon afterwards. The trackage between the diversion at the yard near Boundary Road to the end of track just south of the Cedars Transmission Line became the Cornwall Spur.
1957, October 14 – Roosevelt International Bridge Company sold their bridges to the American and Canadian Seaway companies.
1957, December 20 – the Ottawa & New York Railway Company was dissolved.
1958 – Cornwall Street Railway scrapped P-8.
1958 – Canadian National opens a spur from their main line between Power Dam Drive and Cornwall Centre Road southwards to Ontario Hydro’s transmission station.
1958, May – the St. Lawrence Seaway Corporation began to dismantle the South Roosevelt International Bridge. A new Canada Customs building was being built on the site of the Uscan station from the New York Central. The station building was moved to a property on the west end of Cornwall Island and converted into a shed.
1958, August 9 – Canadian National operated the “Moccasin” train (nos. 25 and 26) for the last time. This regularly scheduled train had been running since the first day Grand Trunk opened through Cornwall.
1959 – Cornwall Street Railway scrapped sweeper 1 and 3 after purchasing from the Ottawa Transportation Commission sweepers B-1 and B-2.
1959 – Canadian National abandoned the spur used by Iroquois Constructors south of Blackadder Drive and opened an extension eastwards to serve Iroquois Chemicals.
1959 – Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip toured Canada by train and stopped in Cornwall for the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway.
1959, November – Courtaulds donated No. 7 to the Canadian Railway Museum in Delson, Quebec after it was agreed that Cornwall Street Railway 7 and 14 would be used solely at Courtaulds, whom rented them from to the street railway.
1960 – the Pitt Street overpass is opened over Canadian National’s main line.
1961 – Canadian Pacific opened a spur into Imperial Oil.
1961, January 31 – the 100,000 gallon water tower at the Canadian National station was demolished.
1962 – Cornwall Street Railway purchased two freight motors from the Lake Erie & Northern Railway as their 15 and 16. They also purchased a freight motor from the Grand River Railway, making it no. 17, and it was their last purchase. These freight motors were left in their paint scheme of Tuscan red with chevrons.
1962 – The company of Coleman & Munro tore down the Canadian National station (original 1855 Grand Trunk limestone station).
1962, July 2 – the North Roosevelt International Bridge was closed.
1962, November 30 – a Canadian Pacific tank car was found to be leaking liquid chlorine at the Canadian Pacific/Cornwall Street Railway exchange yard. The entire northeastern portion of Cornwall was evacuated, but no one lost their lives.
1965, July – the St. Lawrence Seaway Authority began to demolish the North Roosevelt International Bridge.
1965, October 31 – Canadian National began its Rapido passenger service between Montreal and Toronto.
1966 – the Brookdale Avenue overpass is opened over Canadian National’s main line.
1967, September 12 – 164 tons of caustic soda was lost from tank cars that were on a siding on 7th Street West.
1968, May – a locomotive switcher (no number) arrived at the CIL plant for inter-plant switching. It came from the CIL plant in Copper Cliff, Ontario and was #1 there.
1968, December – Canadian National began to use the Turbo passenger train between Montreal and Toronto.
1969, January 7 – The Turbo is taken out of service until problems are worked out.
1969, January 31 – Canadian Pacific abandoned the Cornwall Subdivision from the station at Pitt and Sixth Streets to just east of Sydney Street, a whole city block.
1969, February – the Canadian Pacific station was torn down to make way for a parking lot that was to be used for a new shopping plaza.
1969, October 24 – Canadian Pacific Railway purchased an interest in Cornwall Street Railway.
1970, May 1 – 25 of 104 cars derailed on the Canadian National just a half mile east of the station. Some contents had spilled.
1970, May 25 – The Turbo returns to service.
1970, June 1 – Cornwall Street Railway sold their transit service to a private contractor.
1970, October 14 – Canadian Pacific sold their interest in the Cornwall Street Railway to Canadian National.
1971 – February 1 – The Turbo is taken out of service again until problems that the train continued having were solved.
1971, April 1 – Canadian National purchased all the rail operations, equipment and land of right-of-ways of the Cornwall Street Railway for $430,000. They hastily slapped on the Canadian National logo over all Cornwall Street Railway logos on all pieces of equipment.
1971, July – Canadian National installed a spur off the Cornwall Spur to enter Cornwall Roof Truss Ltd.
1971, July – Canadian National opened over 1.44 miles of former New York Central trackage from a junction on their main line called Wesco (just west of Brookdale Avenue) to the former site of Cornwall Junction as well as a wye that went west of this relaid trackage to just east of the Pfizer Spur. Canadian National then abandoned the Cornwall Spur between the original station grounds, approximately at Amelia Street, to west of Pitt Street, about where York Street is. The trackage from York Street westward to the wye and north to Wesco was designated the Wesco Spur.
1971, July 3 – Canadian Pacific’s rail division was renamed to CP Rail.
1971, August 7 – Canadian National ended electrically powered freight operations in Cornwall, using instead modified S-4 diesel-electric switchers. The majority of rails that still existed on city streets were abandoned. The first time they switched in the Courtaulds property, it took them half a day to get through. Canadian National never returned to that industry after that.
1971, August 10 – Courtaulds began to use a 20-ton Plymouth Model ML-6 diesel mechanical locomotive. Canadian National would drop off cars at a siding on the Courtaulds line next to the Eastcourt Mall where the Courtaulds crew would bring them on to the industry’s property. Courtaulds would bring outgoing cars to the same site for Canadian National. This was the same siding that the street railway use to exchange with Courtaulds at.
1971, October 9 – Canadian National held a retirement parade for Cornwall’s electric street railway, which ran from the car barns westward on Water Street to Cumberland Street. From there the parade continued eastward along 9th Street to the former Canadian National station grounds. The rest of that day and the next, free rides were given from the grounds to the Brookdale Mall to the west and the Eastcourt Mall in the east by using No. 7 and a Canadian National commuter coach car. The railway donated No. 17 and maintenance car No. 4 to the city. Retired were nos. 4, 6 to 9, 11 to 12, 14 to 16 and 3152 while 5 and 10 were scrapped. B-1 was donated to the Canadian Science & Technology Museum.
1972 – no longer operating a street railway, the Cornwall Street Railway, Light & Power Company was renamed to Cornwall Electric, continuing to purchase electric power from outside Cornwall and supplying it to their customers. Canadian National donated former Cornwall Street Railway 11 to the Ohio Railway Museum, 12 and 3152 to the Shore Line Trolley Museum, 14 to the Illinois Railway Museum and B-2 to the Seashore Trolley Museum.
1973, June 12 – former Cornwall Street Railway freight motors nos. 6 to 9 and 15 were scrapped at St. Lawrence Iron & Metal in Quebec.
1973, June 22 – a Canadian National Turbo set broke down in Cornwall.
1973, October – former Cornwall Street Railway freight motor no. 16 was donated to the Halton County Radial Railway.
1974 – Canadian National opened a spur from their main line west of the Richmond Drive crossing northwest of Cornwall to Combustion Engineering, which was within city limits after crossing over Highway 2. The plant had a 12-Ton BCL Brookville switcher from their plant in Courtright.
1974, September – The Turbo returns to service once more.
1976 – Canadian National became CN Rail.
1976, April 25 – CN ceased direct service between Cornwall and Toronto.
1976, August – CN donated caboose #79095 to the United Counties Museum on Second Street West, which was in front of Domtar Fine Papers.
1976, October – CN restarted direct service between Cornwall and Toronto.
1977, January 12 – CN created VIA Rail Canada to operate their passenger services.
1978, April 1 – VIA became a separately owned Federal company from CN.
1980 – VIA began to use the LRC engines and passenger cars (Light, Rapid, Comfort). This train set was to replace the costly Turbo set.
1981, January 28 – CN received permission to abandon the last remaining trackage running on Cornwall streets, the Cumberland Spur which ran for 0.3 miles from the corner of Cumberland and Ninth Streets, down Cumberland and then west on Seventh Street West, ending at the No-Corrode building.
1981, August – former Cornwall Street Railway 17 was placed on display in front of the Water Purification Plant on 2nd Street West in Cornwall. Maintenance car 4 was deemed to be in too bad of a shape for restoration and was scrapped.
1982 – the McConnell Avenue overpass is opened over CN’s main line.
1982, March – CN’s Iroquois Chemicals spur abandoned. A portion from the wye connection of the Wesco Spur to about 0.5 miles westward was added to the Wesco Spur.
1982, October 31 – VIA stopped using the Turbo trains.
1982, December – Combustion Engineering took delivery of a 16-Ton BCL-TC Brookville switcher from Caloric Corp in Topton, Pennsylvania. The 12-Ton switcher was likely sent to Sherbrooke, Quebec.
1984, February – Courtaulds purchased a new switching locomotive, former CP S-2 #7096, through Merrilees. This loco was never repainted or renumbered. Courtaulds’ Plymouth was sold to Merrilees for scrap.
1986 – CN removed the rails of the Cumberland Street Spur.
1987, Feb. 14 – CP’s freight shed burned to the ground. Later that year, a smaller building, about the size of a one vehicle garage, was built on the north side of the line, on McConnell Avenue’s east side.
1987, Nov. 1 – a Cornwall Gravel dump truck, loaded with stone, ran straight into a CP train on Boundary Road, derailing the locomotive’s back end as well as four cars.
1988 – CN opened a new loading/unloading terminal on the north side of Marleau Avenue opposite of Glengarry Boulevard. It was used only for a few months before industries that used rail service had closed in the city. This property would later be used to unload covered hoppers until an accident forced the business and CN to move that operation to the former exchange yard that CN had with the street railway in the west end of the city, on the north side of Brookdale Avenue. They also abandoned the Cornwall Spur from Lafarge Cement to east of McConnell Avenue.
1988 – CIL was purchased by ICI.
1990 – CN abandoned the Wesco Spur from York Street to west of Brookdale Avenue.
1990, October – Combustion Engineering closed.
1991 – CP became CP Rail Systems.
1991 – CN became CN North America.
1991, July – ICI took delivery of a second shunting locomotive, #915 from their Sarnia plant, due to their regular shunter undergoing repairs.
1991, September 2 – Locweld Inc. purchased the Combustion Engineering property, including the 16-Ton switcher within the building.
1992 – CN stopped operating two switchers in Cornwall. Since taking over the street railway operations, CN had operated two S class locomotives in the city, one stationed in the west end next to the Wood House Museum and the second was stationed in the east on the old main line (Cornwall Spur). Since the closure of many industries in the city during the recession, CN opted to eliminate the west end switcher, having the east end one do both parts of the city.
1992 – CN’s spur into Cornwall Roof Truss Ltd was removed.
1992 – CN caboose #79095 was locked up for good after the Stormont Dundas & Glengarry Historical Society amalgamated their two museum site operations.
1993, February – Courtaulds closed and locomotive #7096 was sent to the United States. The closure abandoned the Courtaulds Line from the CP/CN exchange yard to the industry.
1994 – the former Uscan station from the New York Central collapsed in on itself due to no maintenance being performed on it.
1994 – CN reopened a spur very near to Cornwall’s eastern boundary that use to supply a heating fuel centre. The spur was extended to negotiate around several warehouses and ended at Cornwall Warehousing’s southern building.
1995 – CP renamed back to Canadian Pacific Railway.
1995, November 19 – CN became a publicly traded company on the stock market, becoming Canadian National Railway.
1995, December 25 – Canadian Pacific abandoned the Cornwall Subdivision. The last train ran last spring.
1996 – ICI sold locomotive #915 to Harmac Pacific in Harmac, BC. Canadian National abandoned the Cornwall Spur from McConnell Avenue to just east of the old diamond with Canadian Pacific.
1996, October 1 – Canadian Pacific created a subsidiary company, the St. Lawrence & Hudson Railway, to operate their Eastern Division. The Cornwall Sub, which was abandoned yet still had rails on it, was under the new company’s jurisdiction.
1997, June – ICI sold their locomotive switcher to Slater Steel in Hamilton, via a dealer named Paikin.
1998, July – after heated debates, the St. Lawrence & Hudson removed the rails of the Cornwall Subdivision.
1998, Aug. 27 – Six tank cars rolled along Canadian National’s Wesco Spur behind the Brookdale Mall, busted through the bumper and one car leaked recovered alcohol throughout the siding area. The Mall was closed, Wal-Mart’s official opening was cancelled and other business north of the accident on Brookdale Avenue were forced to close. The liquid was part of a shipment to BASF.
1999, September – Canadian National started a RoadRailer service that ran between Montreal and Toronto. A terminal in Cornwall was set up at the Marleau Avenue Yard for Supply Chain Management where trailers could be shipped out on rail.
1999, Sept. 24 – Canadian National abandoned 400 feet of their yard on the north side of the Brookdale Mall, a decision made by the company after the City of Cornwall demanded the yard be abandoned.
2000 – Canadian National abandoned one of Domtar’s spurs. This trackage was originally laid by the Cornwall Street Railway and use to run in front of the Wood House (United Counties Museum). The trackage had not seen a train operate on it since the year before when the museum building was moved.
2000, January 16 – the first “Enterprise” begins to run through Cornwall by VIA. It was the first over-night passenger train since the 1990 service cuts.
2001, December 12 – VIA ran their LRC engines for the last time and started using the Geneses locomotives.
2001, December 18 – After years of neglect, former Canadian National caboose #79095 was given to the Smiths Falls Railway Museum.
2002, December 20 – 10 cars from a Canadian National train of 126 derailed just west of Cornwall Centre Road.
2004 – Cornwall Gravel levelled off 401 where Canadian Pacific’s Cornwall Subdivision went under. There was no culvert installed to allow recreational traffic from either side of the highway to pass like what was done in Kingston to the old Kingston & Pembroke Railway line (CPR’s Kingston Sub).
2004, February 3 – Canadian National locomotive #5775 caught fire while travelling east through Cornwall. The train stopped at the Toll Gate Road crossing for firefighters to put out the blaze.
2004, March – after a strike by CN workers was ended, the company closed the RoadRailer service in Cornwall.
2005, March 29 – a Cornwall citizen managed to steal a small section of rail, tie plates, spikes and anchors on an abandoned portion of Canadian National’s Cornwall Spur (the subject part is between the old CNR/CPR diamond and McConnell Avenue). His objective was to sell the steel for cash, but was arrested by police for theft.
2005, May 17 – former Cornwall Street Railway locomotive #17 was moved from in front of the Cornwall Water Purification Plant to the southeast corner of Brookdale Avenue and Ninth Street West.
2005, September 15 – VIA ran the last “Enterprise”.
2005, October 2 – a tank car threw a wheel on Canadian National’s Kingston Subdivision west of Power Dam Drive.
2006, March 31 – Domtar officially closes. Not long afterwards, the shunting engine based in the city’s east end was reassigned, making runs into Cornwall during the weekdays instead.
2006, June 7 – Canadian National removed the Second Street West grade crossings for the east end of the closed Domtar plant. Those two spurs were a constant problem to automobile drivers and repairs in the past never would last long.
2006, June 26 – Cornwall City Council, with advisory by Heritage Cornwall, passed a by-law to place a heritage designation on Cornwall Street Railway locomotive #17. This is the first and only such designation on a piece of railway rolling stock in Ontario.
2006, July 8 – Phase 1 of the Cornwall Street Railway locomotive #17 restoration was completed (erection of the original plaque; repaint of the body in the proper CPR Tuscan Red and placement of picnic tables and garbage bins). No other work was done due to City budget restrains.
2007, October 3 – All rails within the decommissioned P-C-I plant property were removed.
2010 – Locweld Inc. closed.
2011, August – The north passing siding at Regis Yard was removed.
2013, July – Rails south of Second Street to Synagi was abandoned.
2014 – Laframboise Welding took over the Locweld building.
2016, June 3 – Rails south of Marleau Avenue to Cornwall Warehouse was abandoned.