Near Avery in Shoshone County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
The End of the Road?
Time Runs Out for “America s Resourceful Railroad”
Never-ending financial problems, speedy new interstate highways and jets killed Milwaukee's passenger service to the Pacific Coast by 1961. Stiff freight competition and corporate mismanagement put an end to railroad service altogether in late 1979.
On March 17, 1980 the last whistle sounded from the last train through the Bitterroots. It was a Milwaukee work train slowly rumbling out of Idaho manned by a small crew hauling away company property.
The American Railroader’s Trusted Timekeeper
A train on a track at the wrong time could mean delay or disaster. Every engineer and conductor carried special railroad watches that were extra rugged and accurate. The Hamilton Watch Company called itself “the Railroad Timekeeper of America” and specialize din the manufacture of robust watches for railroaders.
The company boasted, “No railroad changes can affect the Hamilton’s timekeeping qualities.” Little did they realize the advances in transportation and technology that would dramatically change timekeeping and railroads.
What Time Is It?
Railroads needed a system of standard times to run trains safely and promptly.
The time boundary along the Bitterroot Mountains was actually at Avery, the railroads division point between the Rocky Mountain and Idaho Divisions.
Location. 47° 21.112′ N, 115° 44.198′ W. Marker is near Avery, Idaho, in Shoshone County. Marker can be reached from Moon Pass Road (Federal Road 456) 0.4 miles south of Loop Creek Road (Federal Road 326). Click for map. Located at the Route of the Hiawatha Trailhead. Marker is in this post office area: Avery ID 83802, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Busy Bogle Spur (here, next to this marker); The Route of the Hiawatha (here, next to this marker); Not So "Lucky" Swedes (a few steps from this marker); Bumps on the Milwaukee Road (approx. 0.4 miles away); Rough Roads & Wrecks (approx. 0.6 miles away); Laboring in Luxury (approx. one mile away); You want to be a Ranger? (approx. 1.1 miles away); Railroad at WAR! (approx. 1.5 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Avery.
More about this marker. On the upper right is a photo with the caption, "The flagman, brakeman, conductor, baggageman, fireman and engineer all synchronize their watches before a run." Milwaukee Road photograph
Also see . . . Route of the Hiawatha Rail Trail. (Submitted on August 5, 2011, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
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Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 467 times since then and 28 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.