Post War Kelso

January 22, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

After the war.

​Kelso declined rather rapidly after the war ended.  Steam engines were replaced with the new diesel electrics, first the passenger trains then slowly the freight trains had diesel engines at the point rather than the smoke belching,m and fire breathing steam engines.  The diesels did not require the frequent stops for water that the steam locomotives did, and with the advent of dining cars in the 1930's, fewer passengers visited Kelso.  as the freight trains were replaced with the diesel engines, the helpers were no longer necessary to make the Cima grade.

The silver and gold mines were closed at the beginning of the war, and the poor quality of the iron ore at the mine south of Kelso, that mine did not last either.  Much of the cattle that were transported by the railroad now moved by truck to market.  During the 1950's and early 60's the engine shops were dismantled along with the water and coaling facilities.  Soon there was not much left but a maintenance crew. For over two decades the Kelso depot languished, falling into disrepair and was in sad shape.

More about the depot next time.

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