From The Archives F.C. Edwards Introduction - Continued Part 2
- CD Tower was laid out like a rectangle. When you walked through the door
there was actually a little "witness stand" like railing to the right of the
door. The bay window was to the far right and the end of the interlocking
machine was right in front of the door but facing the tracks. It was at
least 30 feet long.
My "seat" was to the right of Frank in a metal easy chair. Frank always
addressed me as "Kid" I might have been 13 or 14. i was not the only
visitor. There was another kid named Dana who might have been 115 or 16. I
did not know him well and our paths only crossed a few times at CD.
The desk had a scissor phone that was connected to a speaker that always had
a hummmmmmm as it was the dispatchers line. A note for all you younger
folks. The dispatchers line was an open line that all could speak to the DS
on. One tower could also call another. When a train departed Harmon the
operator at CD would hear the DS report (the HM operator calling the consist
into the dispatcher) and know that soon the train would be "on the bell". A
bell would literally sound when a train enterd CD's interlocking territory.
to transmit there was a foot pedal that would open the line so that the
towerman could speak.
There was also a "Bell System" phone without a dial and a company line
phone. There were times when the tower was boring and there were other times
when the palce wa abuzz, like just before the second trick started.
Frank Edwards was a tall man, bald and not thin and not hefty but tall, an
imposing stature if not for his easy going demeaner. He wore glasses and
clearly owned the tower. I have in my hand a piece of paper that he wrote.
It is not dated but interesting:
TCEU 7-3-42 (not sure what it means)
In case my vacation request is not in mail in time here is my list-
1 4 weeks in August
2 Last 2 weeks in August, 1st 2 in September
3 4 weeks in september
4 Last 3 in September 1st week in October
5 Last 2 in September 2 in October.
Frank C. Edwards Jr
I am sure Frank told me that he worked OW, GD and I think FH and BN (conn
with the Put) and was the one to lock the doors at PF and CR. He was the one
who told me that FH stood for Frog Hollow (near Marble Hill) a name that
would harken back to the days before the East River was navigable all the
way around Manhattan.
Frank also had a little bit of artist in him and he had an N gauge railway
in his basement. he also agve to me the following cartoon:
There are three boxcars going by in the background with the logo So and So N
Gauge Lines. There are two ants in the foreground standing up near thier
campfire, one holding a stick with his belongings tied to the end. One ant
says to the other "Hell of a Railroad you picked to Hobo on! Not an open
boxcar door in four days!"
If I do not mention it in the next couple of sections, someone ask me about
"Half Hour" the Un Oh story...... there are so many things coming back to
mind. Like "51 Jack" and the torpedoes.
More to come.
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