Canadian National Railways Water Facilities

These notes have been prepared by Andrew Jeanes, Doug Wilson, Colin Churcher and members of the Ottawa Railway History Circle

Renfrew Subdivision (inc OA&PS, and GTR)
Ottawa, Elgin StreetOttawa Citizen 9 September 1882
--- The company is now laying its sidings, erecting its water tanks, laying down a turntable for the use of locomotives, ---
Ottawa Citizen 13 September 1882  --- The company is now laying its sidings, erecting its water tanks, laying down a turntable for the use of locomotives, ---
Matt-0758 May 1950

Matt--760 May 1950
RenfrewRenfrew Mercury 1 March 1907
The Grand Trunk evening express going west on Monday night was frozen to the track at Renfrew station through the overflow of water from the tank.  It was not until a freight came along and pushed it out that it made its way westward, nearly three hours late
Renfrew Mercury 17 February 1911
Mr. M. Donaldson, superintendent of this division of the G.T.R. , came up by the noon train on Tuesday and was met by the Mayor and Engineer and the waterworks and streets committees.  First the group visited the railway tank, the condition of which had caused an urgent message to be sent to the railway officials.  Mr. Donaldson promised to have some temporary improvements done at once: and more permanent changes during the summer: to prevent waste of water and damage to streets and property.

GTR 2356 Matt-1401
EganvilleOttawa Journal 16 November 1893
The steel gangs are progressing towards Eganville and will probably reach there by the end of this week.  The company is building a large tank on the side of the track a little beyond the station house, and from this an aqueduct is being dug to the creek beyond the lacrosse grounds from which the water supply is to be drawn. - Renfrew Journal.
Golden Lake
Whitney10 September 1895 from Thomas Ridout. RG 12 vol. 1879 file 3268-70
Large frost free tank 60,000 gallons, water pumped by steam.
Barrys BayRenfrew Mercury 8 June 1894
There were also shipped today three carloads of material containing everything necessary for the building of a very large water tank on the far end of the Parry Sound road.  The tank end station house were all purchased in this city.  The tank, which will contain 60,00 gallons of water, will be put up  by men who will go west for the work next week under the direction of Mr. George Tomlinson.  Ottawa Free Press.
13 November 1894 from Francis J. Lynch RG 12 vol. 1879 file 3268-70
At Barrys Bay station grounds there is a well finished and convenient station building. There are two permanent sidings and a Y. A 60,000 gallon tank is partly erected but there is at present ample supply of water now obtained by syphons a short distance both east and west of the station.
Renfrew Mercury 7 December 1894
Barry's Bay is threatened with the removal of its station and water tank to a point four miles west.  Disputes between land owners and the railroad company respecting land required by the company is the cause.
11 February 1897 from Frank Stafford to Minister Blair
In March 1894 as owner of the lot on which the railway station at Barrys Bay is built I offered the railway the right of way across my land according to their registered plans and two acres free for station grounds.
The company made a subsequent survey coming 90 feet nearer and cutting off the yard of my buildings and then erected a tank at my back door. A difficulty arose between us in consequence of their action and the railway station closed the station during five months to compel me to deed them the land in question.
John R. Booth and I then arranged that on my executing a conveyance of the required land he would, in return, allow me water from the tank for household purposes and also for fire protection on account of the increased risk to my buildings by closer proximity of locomotives one of which had set some logs on fire close to my shed a short time previous. This promise was made by Mr. Booth but he expressed himself as not desirous of making a condition of the deed.

Fan Trip 15 October  1972 Bruce Chapman photo
MadawaskaCanadian Railway and Shipping World March 1920
Work done in 1919. A 100,000 gal. water tank and freight shed were built at Madawaska, this point being a district terminal between Ottawa and Depot Harbour.


Updated 17 July 2020

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