Morsum Magnificat Magazine (England)MM50 - February 1997
- Pages 22-24 - Reviewed by Tony Smith, Consultant Editor Mr Smith gives
an excellent overview of the contents of the book and provides a number of
images from the book.
He concludes: "The book provides a wealth of information on the subject
[telegraph]. With many fine illustrations, including photographs from the
archives of the Canadian National and Canadian Pacific Railways, it should
appeal to all those interested in telegraph and railway history."
RPM Historical Society (England) - AE Adams The reviewer provides a summative overview of the contents
of the book, then concludes:
"A highly specialised subject, uniquely explored & explained by this
book so as to make it simple and easy to understand, and to appreciate that
the electric telegraph played an equally pioneering role, together with the
transcontinental railway, in binding Canada into a nation."
Interview at CKTB Radio 610AM, June 27,
1996 - 0745-0759, by Host, Jim Martin "...a most interesting book...with
a lot of interesting and new information in there..."
"This country is a pioneer and a leader in transportation and
communications technology, yet, until now, little has been written about the
first device of electronic communication, the telegraph...until your book"
"...'hadn't gone on-line with the idea'...that's such a terribly 90s
phrase, on-line ... but it is appropriate today because the telegraph was the
first 'internet' as you have pointed out..."
"Why should we care about the telegraph? Because our origins are
essential, especially our communications origins..."
"[The telegraph] was hot stuff in those days...a fascinating part of
Canada's telecommunications development."
"Any town that had a telegraph office was a town to be on the map too -
if you didn't have one you weren't there..."
"There are some little passages in your book that really jumped out at
me - one, some of the early misconceptions like packages being sent down the
"We had the first Canadian Pony Express beating the Americans with that
"It's been a treat talking to you. Good luck with it - you've got a lot
Canadian Railway Modeller - Issue T6T3, Page 26 by Jim
Martin "Generally speaking, the arrival of the
telegraph in Canada 150 years ago predated the development of our railways.
Although the railways are often credited for pulling the country together, a
good argument can also be made for the telegraph. Canada was among the first
countries to embrace this forerunner of the Internet, and in areas of
telecommunications and transportation we've been a leader ever since."
"Amply illustrated, Canadian Railway Telegraph History is an easy and
often fascinating read."
"We learn, for example, that telegraphers' cases of 'glass arm' are
among the first recorded instances of today's well known repetitive stress
"An entire generation has now grown up neither sending nor receiving a
telegram. However, today's young modellers surfing the net owe the telegraph a
debt of gratitude."
"Modellers will glean some visual information from this book, its real
value is historical. As Martha Stewart would say, "It's a good thing."
Rail and Transit Magazine - Upper Canada Railway
Society May-June 1996 - Page 13 - by Art Clowes
"...a book on an intriguing subject that was hand-in-glove with
railways, their development, and operations."
"...the many photographs bring back fond memories....the captions were
very descriptive, and this descriptiveness also helped me straighten them
"Overall, it looks like a worthwhile book for both the
telegraphy and railway enthusiast."
Mark Lauckner,Book Review, Canadian Insulator Collector,
September/October 1996, Pages 14-15
"...[this] book takes the telegraph and its
development out of the patent drawings and places it in the communities of
early Canadian settlements and cities." "...[it] picks up where the
railway history books leave off. [It's not another locomotive picture book.]
Robert Burnet's book makes up for it tenfold."
"[the] book is stuffed full of tables and charts..."
"All in all, this book is a great addition to the library of anyone
interested in Canadian railway history, telegraph history, and collectors of
Canadian railway insulators."
Mark Lauckner,Book Review, Crown Jewels of the Wire,
"This new book starts right at the beginning with a 50
page history of early telegraph companies in Canada. The topics weave
together: pre-confederation Canadian history with the early electric
"From the telegraph lore and numerous photos, the reader can easily see
how the telegraph was a fully integrated and vital part of these communities.
The telegraph was said to be responsible for urban insanity and was even
featured in dream analysis."
"Every time I opened the book I realized just how important the
insulators we collect were in facilitating this fantastic mechanical and
cultural communications development."
"In the hobby of insulator collecting, we don't really have much history
about the telegraph itself."
"...this book is a great addition to the library of anyone interested in
Canadian railway history, telegraph history, and collectors of Canadian
Librarian, A. Herwin "...an
exciting book about Canada...full of special Canadian and Railway telegraphic
insites..." "...easy to read in a well-organized
text with excellent and accurate documentation..." "...fascinating new material never before published..."
Retired Railway Operator, C. Page "...it's about time someone recognized the telegraph in Canada
this way - way-to-go Robert..."
Retired, J. McCalpin "...informative...brought back a lot of childhood
Teacher, J. Gooeld "...I'm going
to use my book to educate my students about the telegraph and how it helped
create and unite Canada..." "...I had NO idea the
railway telegraph and the telegraph generally was so significant to
HAM Operator, E. Sieb "I've just
received my copy of Canadian Railway Telegraph History, and spend most of my
lunch hour perusing it! Fascinating and very instructive!"
"...the book is a welcome addition to my library"
"I appreciated finding the diagrams on pages 100 and
101....I always wondered about the correct way of wiring up a small "circuit"
for two stations. Now I know; thanks!"
Retired Railway Operator, V. Campbell "Thank you for sending my copy of your book, the Canadian Railway
Telegraph History, inshort, IT IS WONDERFUL..."
"I've been hoping someone would do a book about us and
tell a little about our work on the railway - we've been forgotten by the
railway and the railfans!"
"I certainly appreciated the chapters on the OPERATOR
and DISPATCHER - you got it right, we WERE the brains behind the trains.
Thanks so much, 73s."
Fascinating and well-written history of the Canadian Railway Telegraph. Covers the founding and complete operation of the Canadian Pacific Railway Telegraph Co. and the Canadian National Railways Telegraph Co. from 1846-1956, beginning with the Toronto, Hamilton, Niagara and St. Catharines Electro-Magnetic Telegraph Co. Illustrated throughout with black and white photos of every aspect (from machinery to personnel, from telegraph stations to telegraph franks) as well as detailed mechanical drawings explaining the technical aspects of telegraphy. Includes detailed footnotes. 239 pages with index.