|A TRIBUTE TO THE LAST ELECTRIC INTERURBAN CAR BUILT IN CANADA|
GRAND RIVER RAILWAY 626
Grand River Railway steel combine 626 is nearly new in this view taken at the Preston Shops. The body was built by National Steel Car at Hamilton, Ontario, in 1947. Electrical gear and other equipment was added at the GRR Preston Shops before it entered service in the spring of 1948. It became the regular car on the run between the Galt C.P.R. station, where connections were made with C.P.R. passenger trains, and Kitchener-Waterloo.
Length - 63' 9"
An absolutely beautiful shot of 626 operating in MU with a Lake Erie & Northern steel car, either 973 or 975. The two-car train was caught by Peter Lambert between Freeport and Centreville enroute to Kitchener. Unfortunately, the date of the photograph was not recorded.
Checkerboards were painted on the ends of the cars in an attempt to make the cars more visable to motorists at railway crossings. These were later replaced by black and yellow striping.
It's a rainy Sunday April 24, 1955. The Syracuse Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society's 'Farewell Excursion' is ready to depart Port Dover Station led by 626 followed by GRR 846, LE&N 939, 937 & GRR 862. The sixth car is not part of 'Passenger Extra 626 North'. It is LE&N 975, the car that made the last scheduled run from Galt to Port Dover the previous night.
Following the April 24th trip, 626 was placed in storage with the other steel cars. It and car 622 were held pending conversion to maintainance-of-way cars, or possible sale. Neither materialized, and after only seven years service, 626 was burned at the Preston Shops on May 21, 1957, then cut up for scrap. Car 622 suffered a similar fate the following day.
As the last electric interurban car built in Canada, it is most unfortunate that 626 was not preserved.