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Oakfield Historical Society

Bangor and Aroostook Railroad ice reefer in Searsport, c. 1965

Contributed by Oakfield Historical Society
MMN Item 17836 Item Details
Bangor and Aroostook Railroad ice reefer in Searsport, c. 1965
MMN Item 17836 Zoom

Description

Bangor and Aroostook Railroad ice reefer, 7187, transfering potatoes onto the SS Pioneer Dale in Searsport.

"Ice reefers" were specially designed railroad cars that were cooled with ice during the summer to prevent potatoes from spoiling during the summer shipping season. Icing stations were located in Houlton, Presque Isle and Caribou. During the winter the cars were heated with special stoves to protect produce from freezing.
Bangor and Aroostook Railroad's magazine, "Maine Line," v. 7 #5, pp. 11-13.

Searsport was the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad's connection to the world enabling it to directly export timber, potatoes and other products and more economically import the coal it needed to power its locomotives without having to jointly arrange rates with Maine Central Railroad.

In January of 1950, the SS Pioneer Dale, before the Korean War broke out, came under fire from Chinese aircraft, causing minor damage to the ship and one minor injury. In June, 1950, while docked in Puson, South Korea, it was learned that North Korea was invading South Korea and, at the request of General Walker, the Pioneer Dale evacuated U.S. Army dependents to Fukuoka, Japan. ("The Voyage Abstract," 20:3)




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