the making of modern michigan

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Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 96-97
Smith, Kay, 1925-

Bloomfield Township Public Library

Bloomfield Township (Mich.) -- History

Railroads -- Michigan -- Birmingham

Williams, Alfred (""Old Sault"")

Item Number

part of 'Bloomfield Blossoms' by Kay Smith

text, image


OLD SAULT RACES THE HUCKLEBERRY LINE Many tales revolve around Old Sault. The favorite one describes his frequent races with the train. The train was extremely slow, so slow that people joked about the young man who boarded in Detroit and was old and feeble by the time he got to Pontiac. The nickname "The Huckleberry Line" comes from the same idea. You could jump off the first car, pick your fill of huckleberries and jump back on the last car with no difficulty. A favorite trick of Old Sault's, much as he loved his loco- motive and regarded it as human, was to load up the train in Pontiac, hitch up his horse and wagon and race the train to Detroit. What's more, he always won! The last legend of Old Sault describes how he'd conceived the idea of building the station over the tracks with large swinging doors at each end which were closed at night. One night, someone forgot to open the doors as the train was approaching with Old Sault himself at the throttle. Folklore has it that Williams thought the train would have sense enough to stop on its own and wait for admittance; sad but true his beloved locomotive failed to live up to his expectations and the resultant crash as it went through both sets of doors made a complete wreckage of the whole building. Old Sault lost the railroad in 1840. For the next century it had a series of owners and a series of names until it became part of the Grand Trunk system as it is today.

Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 96-97 part 1 Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 96-97 part 2

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