|An iconic boxcar of the BAR nerail.com - click|
BAR was formed by the purchase and merger of the Bangor and Katahdin Iron Works Railroad and the Bangor and Piscataquis Railroad, the line then extended to Houlton, and eventually to Caribou and Van Buren. As the railroad continued to grow new tracks extended throughout eastern and northern Maine, primarily northern.
The Medford Cutoff from Packard to South Lagrange enabled the BAR to extend lines to Millinocket and East Millinocket; and in Van Buren a bridge was built to connect the BAR to the Canadian National Railway.
BAR began hauling potatoes in heated boxcars in 1895 and during the great depression they (the potatoes) provided 50% of the revenue for the BAR. The end for hauling spuds ended when the Penn Central Transportation Company interchange service had gotten so bad that a full BAR load of potatoes froze and were spoiled in 1969-1970, several Aroostook County farms had to close and sell because of the fiasco.
The BAR carried chemical and petroleum products for the paper mills in Maine, and ammunition and aviation fuels to Dow and Loring Air Force Bases for the Strategic Air Command.
The colors of the US flag appeared during the 1950's and were adopted for use up until the railroad was sold to the Montreal, Maine and Maritimes Company in 2003; adding to the sad history of American Railroads.
|The pink rails were still used in 2003|
the red lines were discontinued at
different times - click to enlarge
|BAR 357 switches over at a potato processing plant in Fort Fairfield - wikipedia|