Railway History Books
Canadian National Steam Power by Anthony Clegg and Ray Corley, 1969, Railfare Enterprises Ltd, is the authoritative source of information on CN's steam locomotives. It also includes information on locomotives inherited by CN from the Grand Trunk, the Canadian Northern and other constituent lines.
Canadian Pacific Locomotives by Omer Lavallee, Railfare Publications, not only goes into the details of the CP steam locomotive roster, but provides a biography of the men who influenced the development their motive power. Profusely illustrated with photos that show the development of CP motive power.
Canadian National Railways by G.R. Stevens, 1960, Clarke, Irwin & Company, is a very detailed history of the lines that made up what ultimately became known as the CNR, along with events from the formation of Canada's national railway to the 1950's. If you can get the two-volume set, you have a very valuable find.
Van Horne's Road by Omer Lavallee, 1974, Railfare Publications, is a profusely -illustrated account of the construction of the CPR and its first years of operation. Did I say profusely-illustrated? That's an understatement. It's loaded with photos, maps, and illustrations.
Lords of the Line by David Cruise and Alison Griffiths, 1988, Viking Press is a biography of the giants of the Canadian Pacific, from George Stephen, William Van Horne to Buck Crump and Ian Sinclair. It provides insight into the politics and psyche of these captains of the railway industry.
The National Dream, 1970, and The Last Spike, 1971, by Pierre Berton has been the most popular book on the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. These two provide insight into the raw politics of building the CPR and how close it came to not making it.
Canadian Northern Railway by T.D. Regher is one of the few books on the CNoR and the two men who were the driving force behind this renegade railway system - William Mackenzie and Donald Mann.
The Railroad King of Canada by Rae Fleming, RR#6, Woodville, ON, K0M 2T0 is an authoritative biography on Sir William Mackenzie of the CNoR.
The Ontario & Quebec Railway by Donald M. Wilson, 1984, Mika Publishing Company, is the book on the history of the Canadian Pacific in Ontario. Lots of photos that have never been published before.
Broad Gauge in the Ottawa Valley, 1993, and Pacific Extension, 1994, by Wayne Tasse, details the building of the Brockville & Ottawa and the Canada Central before they were taken over by the CPR. If you want copies, e-mail us and we will put you in touch with Wayne.
Desperate Venture by James Plomer with Alan R. Capon, 1979, Mika Publishing Company, is the story of the Central Ontario Railway and its progress into the rocky hinterland of Eastern Ontario before it was taken over by the Canadian Northern. Photos, maps, and illustrations.
Haliburton by Rail by Taylor Wilkins, 1992, is the story of the Victoria Railway (which became part of the Midland Railway and absorbed into the Grand Trunk), and the Irondale, Bancroft & Ottawa which ran through the rocky part of the Canadian shield in Central Ontario.
Lines of Country by Christopher Andreae, 1997, The Boston Mills Press, is the authoritative source on the chronology of railway construction in Canada. It's an Atlas of Railway and Waterway History in Canada that fits nicely on your coffee table. Maps, maps, maps. An incredible masterpiece!
Steel of Empire by John Murray Gibbon, 1935, Bobbs-Merrill Company was one of the first authoritative books on the building of the CPR - written about 50 years after the transcontinental line was built. A rare book, but if you can get it, a real treasure.
Before you go, thanx for visiting and come again. Railway Bob