Recollections of

Robert Donnell

Railroad in the 1950's

" I can remember every Friday afternoon there was an old black man who worked on the section gang and had a push car with cans of kerosene and miscellaneous supplies on it. He would push it all over the yard on the rails and fill all of the switch targets with kerosene, clean the glass lens and adjust the wicks. There was nothing more beautiful than to stand out on the switching lead at the very end of sunset and look down the lead and see all the switch targets flickering in red, yellow or green depending on how the switch was aligned. The only noise was the burping exhaust of the Alco switch engine on the engine track! Unbelievable! If only I could bottle and sell it!!! "

Public facilities

"I can also remember public outhouses in the alley between the Pines Hotel and the old Butler-Grimes Five & Dime. They were also marked men, white & colored and women, white & colored."

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