1. An Intro:
In December 1975, as result of a chance meeting and a series of improbable circumstances, I found myself in the employ of The American Freedom Train.
Over the next 14mo I plan to tell my story here in a weekly post. I will time the posts to coincide with the calendar as things happened 38yrs ago. I was not part of the locomotive crew, I was part of the operations crew- the 'foot soldiers' of the AFT. I'm hoping to tell the Freedom Train story from a perspective you may not have previously considered: what went on aft of the steam locomotives.
Also, it's a look at the American RR scene as it existed in the mid 70's. Conrail launched that year. Amtrak was only 5 yrs old and up in Canada CNR was introducing VIA. Many 1st generation diesels were still in front line service. And I stumbled across a remarkable number of steam engines in parks & museums that would live again- but who knew?!
I expect (hoping, actually) that I'll be learning more about all this too- from all of you. It's starting to be a long time ago, and I've either forgotten, misunderstood, or simply never knew all the back stories concerning the AFT, the places we visited, and the things we saw.
I first saw the AFT in Palmdale CA on Dec 22.
We'll start then.
Dutch Flat CA