Jan 04-04

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2004: January: Jan 04-04
Snow plow train    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by James Ludos

Toivo from Toivola on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 07:22 am:

We all know that trains were a big part of the U.P., but did you ever stop to think about how they kept the train tracks clear during the winters? Over in the Guest Gallery, we get a blast from the past, thanks to James Ludos He has a number of shots from the 1970's, but this one, taken in Hubbell, caught my eye. I recognized the gray building just to the left of the train as Harry Hainault's Barber Shop. I remember as a poika, sitting in Harry's barber tuoli, hearing the train coming in the distance, waiting for it to rumble by and shake the whole building. Yes, getting a haircut was a big event in those days!

By Debi, Laurium on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 08:31 am:

Hey! I recognize that buiding also. I lived upstairs in the 2 room (plus toilet and sink) apartment back in 1975. I was a regular customer at Jukuri's Sauna back then. Just before that I lived "katty-corner" from the barber shop. The building(s) would really shake when the train came by. Oh, the good ole days, hey? I also see that the Bridge Cam hasn't been updated.

By Flinstone Freddy on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:04 am:

Haircut and entertainment....all at one low price ! Hubbell here we come !

By jh Clawson, MI on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:15 am:

Great photo.
I have two questions.
The first is which railroad was pushing the plow. I would think either the SOO or Milwaukee Road.
The second is if any railroad used a rotary plow to clear the rails.

By Mary Lou on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:20 am:

GO PACK GO...Reminding all Yoopers......12:00 CST and 1:00 EST ... Even if you are a Lion fan this will be a fun-game to watch. Pre game show probably starts an hour before. Wouldn't it be great to see Holmgrem defeated at Lambeau?? Wear your green and gold today!!

By James, Los Gatos, CA on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:31 am:

Hey Debi, we were neighbors. I lived in the house in the far left of the picture. It was on the corner just "katty-corner" from the post office. I think the side street was Guck if I remember right. That was in '75 as well. We went to Jukuri's every Sat. for our weekly steam. We parked our car in the back of the house and it was quite a job clearing it out after the train came by. We moved into a house on Florida Street in Laurium after that. Are the tracks still there? I saw an aerial photo of the area not to long ago and it seemed like they weren't there.

By James, Los Gatos, CA on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:35 am:

I just looked at another photo I have and it was the Soo Line.

By Liz Benson, Idaho on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 10:50 am:

I've been shoveling snow all week in my yellow and green polar fleece hat built by my sister Barb Williams. That Nevada wonder along with the Calumet family is sitting in Lambeau Field. I'm stuck with FOX T.V. and still shoveling! The banks are so high I can't push my scooper up them anymore. Yup, Idaho has skiing and 'biling snow everywhere! Go Pack and thanks for the snow plowing picture!

By R. J. St Paul on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 11:01 am:

In the late 1940s I recall seeing a railroad snow plow with two rotary blowers on it but it was not built like a Sno-Go with augers to feed the blowers it was more like a "W" shape with the blowers on each side at the bottom of the "W". I also recall when the county tried snow plow wings with fans or blowers on the outer end to assist in winging the snow banks. This idea didn't seem to work out either.

By Paul in Illinois on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 12:49 pm:

Nice shot of the Soo Line Jordan Plow and Spreader. The Jordan is a multi-purpose piece of equipment used for snow removal here and for ballast spreading and grading during the snow free months. C&H and Copper Range used Russel Plows - the C&H plow is preserved at Calumet. Keeping the lines open was very important in the days when the Copper Country depended on rail transportation, people and goods couldn't move. The mines were very dependent, if the rails were blocked, rock didn't move to the mills and coal didn't move to the mines. If this went on long enough, things would have to shutdown.
The rails that the plow is on had a long history. They were orginally narrow gauge operated by the Hancock & Calumet / Mineral Range. They were standard gauged in the early 1900's. The DSS&A took over and then merged into the Soo Line. They were rail banked after the Soo Line adandoned them and were finally taken up after Houghton effectively cut them off from the rest of the world.

By TAMPA on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 12:53 pm:


By Bob Brown, Alabama on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 01:22 pm:

"After Houghton cut them off from the rest of the world"..could someone explain that a little?? I thought the railroads owned the right of ways in all areas.

By Judy Brown-Kurnik Chesaning MI on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 01:25 pm:

So that is what snow looks like! It has been so long since we have had any measurable snow that my memory of it is fading rapidly! We are under a winter storm advisary today with 3-5 inches predicted overnight. INCHES? I want REAL snow!!!

By Fran,Ga on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 01:29 pm:

GO PACK FROM Ga!!! Looks pretty cold there.

By Gordy, IL on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 01:39 pm:

Actually the plow that C&H used the most is at the Houghton County museum in Lake Linden. According to my dad when he was alive, they never used the Russell. The Russell plow was designed to be pushed at speed and throw the snow away from the track, where as the plow at Lake Linden was designed to just push the snow back. I would guess the plow in Lake Linden was a C&H built plow. It was more like the Spreader in the photo above but didn't have any use in the summertime.
Plowing was the first job of the day when C&H was running, dad would get up around 4am if I remember right. Might have been a little earlier.

By MD on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 03:26 pm:

The Barber Shop was actually Albert Hainault's. He was my grandfather and Harry is his youngest . Grandpa Bert cut our hair on occasion when we visited in the summer. His brother operated the one in Lake Linden. Bert and Delia lived over the shop when they were first married until I think the 3rd child was born.

By ed on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 06:11 pm:

When the train stopped running to Hubbell - Lake Linden (mid 1970?) the city of Houghton built parking structures behind the stores on Sheldon Ave. One can not blame them as they were then starting to fight for their survival with the "Box Stores" that were being built up in Houghton Township. When the question of reusing the railroad in the late 80's arose Houghton would not give the right of away back as they had completly covered over the old tracks.

By k on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 07:57 pm:

Paul in Illinois...
You are fascinating with all your info on the area...
Have you written a book ?
If not, you should...

By BELO- Lake Linden on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 08:43 pm:

I believe the mail delivery had a lot to do with RR service to Houghton.I believe discontinued mail by rail was a nasty trick. Any one have info on that history??

By Steve Racine Wi.calumet on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 09:54 pm:

G.B. wins!! First snow in S.E. Wi. bout time. Stormmy night tonight. Miss the great white north

By Gordy, IL on Sunday, January 4, 2004 - 09:54 pm:

Actually most of the rail is still intact under the blacktop of the walking path behind the parking deck. So the right of way is still intact, but Houghton did not want to give up all the beautification they had done. Plus would hate to think of the smelly noisy train running close to all those nice houses east of Houghton or along the waterfront back to Chassell. Part of it was the old not in my backyard syndrome, even though the railroad had been there a long time before most of the homes. So now you just stand and watch all the log trucks hauling logs through town. Oh well.

By Lisa in Tn on Monday, January 5, 2004 - 12:18 am:

I remember playing in an old plow like this that used to be parked up on the tracks behind our house in Calumet. Where the lets seeee yes the IGA is now or pretty close to that ;)
But I can also remember the old foundry (sp) that used to be over there too.
I wonder if that's the same one that I thought I saw in Calumet not that long ago.

By Jim Copper Country on Monday, January 5, 2004 - 01:07 am:

re mail on the train.....the RPO (Railway Post Office) car on the "Copper Country Limited" came off Sept 1967,
about five months before the passenger service itself was discontinued....losing revenue from this hastened the Milwaukee Road's quest to rid itself of the last rail passenger service into the Copper Country; the rr snowplow in today's pix is (was) on the Soo Line RR, and these tracks were abandoned north of Dollar Bay c 1978

By Deep in Houghton on Monday, January 5, 2004 - 02:02 pm:

A note to all of you who are interested in the history of the Copper Country. The third annual Old Settler's Ball will be held in Houghton at Dee Stadium on Saturday evening, July 3, 2004. In association with this event, a two-day symposium will be held covering many different aspects of life in the CC many years ago. There will be some fascinating information available. You can learn more about this at the following website: www.cchomecoming.org

By Jerry, KK, WI on Monday, January 5, 2004 - 05:46 pm:

To James in Los Gatos, CA. You lived in the Grey house on the corner, not the brown house in the picture. I lived there from 1954 until I went off to go back to NMU in 1987. I bought it from Irene Marcotte(my grandmother)after her husband Leo died. I gave it back to her after, I got divorced and moved to Marquette to attend college. When we were little we would run to that back window and watch the plow go by. Many times we would shovel that porch roof off and throw the snow over the path that the "Jordon" made. The worse part was in the spring time, we had to shovel out that back door to prevent water from entering the house. The plow would push it right up to the house.
To Debi, in Laurium, I must have talked to you a few times while I shoveled off the roof of the white garage that is next to the barbershop. I was the one that open the pathway from our garage to the barbershop every winter.

By Ken from da UP on Monday, January 5, 2004 - 10:38 pm:

R.J./St. Paul, I remember those blowers on the wings of the county snowplows, too. They didn't stay on the trucks very long. When I was a little kid in Paavola the thrill of the day was when the 'butterfly' plow came by. It had a wing on both sides of the truck. It was an Italian driver but I can't think of his name. When he was opening the road from the Sunshine location toward Paavola, the snow would REALLY fly! We all wanted to be snowplow drivers when we grew up. :>)

By James, Los Gatos, CA on Tuesday, January 6, 2004 - 03:49 pm:

Jerry in Wis,

Wow, your right. It's been so long I forgot what
house I lived in. I knew it was on the corner but
I guess I was confused on the color. Thanks
for setting it right.

By Debi, Laurium on Tuesday, January 6, 2004 - 04:02 pm:

To James, Los Gatos CA: What a small world, hey? I now live in Florida Location in Laurium. As we "speak" it is a blizzard up here--can't see across the road at times. Now this is a typical U.P. winter!
To Jerry, KK, WI: I probably did talk to you a few times when I lived next door. I have a hard time remembering what I did yesterday, talk about 1975!

By eero jukuri haukipudas on Saturday, November 13, 2004 - 12:18 pm:

lunta on satanu raiteille ihan tarpeeksi.
täälä oulunseudulla haukiputaalla ei ole vielä lunta satanu mutta eiköhän sitä jouluksi saada tännekkin.

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