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Edition #53, May 1, 2007

Steve, You’re Way Behind Time

Photographer: Bob Wilcox

                                                        Photo by  Bob Wilcox

Steve, You’re Way Behind Time

When we move I like to get out and find sites to watch trains and take photos. I was off to revisit Clifton Forge, Roanoke and Moss Run after we moved to central Virginia in 2003. Loaded up with too many maps and downloads I took off to find new spots.  I found new locations in Ashland, Covington and Orange.

I also sought out new railroad ghost towns. These were the bustling little places about every 100 miles where crews and locomotives would be changed until new technology and new labor agreements made them unnecessary to the railroad. Places like Gerber, California, Salida, Colorado and Huntington, Oregon. In Virginia they are towns like Gladstone on the C&O's James River Subdivision and Vesuvius on the N&W's Roanoke District. I also stumbled across Monroe on the Crescent Route.  It is Virginia's most famous railroad ghost town.  When I visited all that was left was an old fence, an old mailbox and an old song. It's the one that goes:

"He gave him his orders at Monroe, Virginia,
Saying, "Steve, you're way behind time.
This is not 38, but it's Old 97,
You must put her into Spencer on time…"

Bob Wilcox

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