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Chatham, Wallaceburg & Lake Erie Railway
- aka Come Walking & Leave Early -

CW&LE freight train

Chatham, Ontario, Canada
Revised February 19, 2010


The picture at the top of this page is obviously posed. The single CW&LE electric freight motor has in tow a 22 car train grossing 1975 tons.
Although it is impossible to see a number on the locomotive, there is little doubt that it is #11. The CW&LE acquired only one HEPC locomotive,
E-11 in 1926. Built by National Steel Car Co. of Hamilton, Ontario in 1918, it weighed 50 tons and was 35 feet in length. In 1930, 11 was sold to the
International Nickel Co., Sudbury, Ontario where it became their 108. Sadly, this locomotive was scrapped in 1999.

(See the Current Locomotive Roster section of Thomas Sajnovic's INCO Rail site
for links to images of International Nickel locomotives including 108.)



Along with its passenger cars, the CW&LE rostered just four electric freight motors, all obtained second hand. In addition to #11 described above, there was a number 107, ex Fort Dodge, Des Moines and Southern Railway 107. This was a class A steeple cab built by Baldwin-Westinghouse in October 1910 with s/n 35435. It was sold to Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Co. 93 in July 1932. It was scrapped in the 1970's. (The book, 'Iowa Trolleys' CERA Bulletin 114 has a photo of FDDM&S 107 at the bottom of page 123 while Come Walking and Leave Early: A Pictorial History of the Chatham, Wallaceburg and Lake Erie Electric Railway Co. by John Rhodes has a photo of CW&LE 107 on page 69.)

A locomotive, for which the CW&LE number is unknown, was ex Toronto and York Radial Railway 2, ex Ontario Hydro-Electric Power Commission E-21, originally Auburn & Syracuse Electric Railroad 105. Built in 1918, this Baldwin-Westinghouse class B motor carried s/n 48538. It later went to the Niagara, St. Catharines & Toronto Railway as their 18. It also operated on the Oshawa Railway before being retired. This locomotive is now at the Connecticut Trolley Museum, East Windsor, CT.

The fourth locomotive was ex New York Dock Company, 'BROOKLYN'. This was a 25-ton class A Baldwin-Westinghouse steeple cab, bearing s/n 21488 and a builders date of January 10, 1903. It was acquired by CW&LE in December 1908 and numbered 20. The book, 'Interurban Electric Locomotives From Baldwin-Westinghouse' shows this locomotive as being sold to the Cornwall Street Railway Light and Power, Cornwall, ON, as their 11(1) in 1928. However, John M. Mills, in his book 'Niagara, St. Catharines & Toronto', states that NS&T 11 was sold to CSRL&P 11* in 1928. I strongly doubt that CSRL&P 11 is the same locomotive as CW&LE 20 as there are so many differences when comparing the two.

Notes Towards a Street Railway History of Chatham, Ontario
by David A. Wyatt

* (Image of CSRL&P 11 courtesy of Don's Rail Photos web site.)




  • Adam Beck - James Sturgis - Fitzhenry & Whiteside, Don Mills ON, 1982, ISBN 0-88902-246-1
  • Come Walking and Leave Early: A Pictorial History of the Chatham, Wallaceburg and Lake Erie Electric Railway Co.
    - John Rhodes - Rhodes Specialty Advertizing, Chatham ON, 1989, ISBN 0-9693380-1-5
  • Electric Locomotive Rosters - edited by Robert J. Wayner - Wayner Publications, New York NY, 1965
  • Ghost Railways of Ontario Volume 2
    - Ron Brown - Polar Bear Press, Toronto ON, 2000, ISBN 1-896757-14-6
  • Interurban Electric Locomotives From Baldwin-Westinghouse
    - Joseph A. Strapac - Shade Tree Books, Bellflower CA, 2001, ISBN 0-930742-22-2
  • Lines of Country: An Atlas of Railway and Waterway History in Canada
    - Christopher Andreae - The Boston Mills Press, Erin ON, 1997, ISBN 1-55046-133-8
  • On a Streak of Lightning: Electric Railways in Canada
    - J. Edward Martin - Studio E, Delta BC, 1994, ISBN 0-920716-03-2
  • Sir Adam Beck and the Hydro Radial Proposals
    - John F. Due - Upper Canada Railway Society - Bulletin 50, Toronto ON, 1958
  • The Intercity Electric Railway Industry in Canada
    - John F. Due - University of Toronto Press, Toronto ON, 1966

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