There was a time when railways criss-crossed Nova Scotia, carrying passengers and delivering mail, moving freight and produce, hauling timber, coal, gypsum, and iron ore. But those days have passed thanks in large measure to the advent of the automobile, improved highways, long-haul trucking, and the vagaries of market demands and resource extraction. The number of railways operating today in the province can be tallied on one hand, with fingers left over.
Vestiges of Nova Scotia's railway heritage are disappearing. Tracks are now Rails to Trails; trestle bridges have deteriorated to decrepitude; and train stations, once the arterial pulse for so many communities, have, for the most part, disappeared. Most poignant, perhaps, is the silencing of that magical, haunting train whistle.
Mike Parker's latest book End of the Line follows a similar track as three of his earlier best-selling books about ghost towns and deserted island settlements. Presented in Mike's popular storytelling style, and drawing upon more than 430 images, many of them in colour, End of the Line opens another window to the past, taking the reader for a nostalgic trip back in time on the abandoned Dominion Atlantic Railway along the once-famous Land of Evangeline route from Yarmouth to Halifax through the heart of the Annapolis Valley.
Twenty-five years have passed since the demise of the Dominion Atlantic Railway (1894-1994), which closed just one month and five days short of its one hundredth birthday. There have been many railways but none more storied than the D.A.R., considered to be "one of the more important pages out of Nova Scotia history."
Publication Date: 20190515
- Summer Reads 2019