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The Railroad and the Big Bridge
Submitted by Mrs. Lilybelle McMillan & Mrs. Beth
Take Foresters Falls road east out of the village until you
come to the first intersection.
Turn North onto the Grant Settlement Road and proceed .1
kilometers until you cross the tracks.
Walk west along the tracks until you come to the railroad
bridge (.7k). Beware because trains still travel this stretch of track. Do not
walk on the bridge itself.
The Gibson Lake watershed creek ran through Foresters Falls
and on to the Ottawa River. It was later called McNaughton's Creek after Mr.
McNaughton, a surveyor at that time.
The McNaughton Creek made a valley on its way to the Ottawa
River, making it necessary to build the Big Bridge, about 1913. It was built on
the eastern side of the Village beyond what was called Elliott Rocks. The
station was built about a mile down the Kerr Line Rd. near the intersection of
this road and the Grant Settlement Rd, and near the former Millar Store, now
the Broken Paddle.
The railroad was the main line of the Canadian National
Railway, and like its counterpart, the Canadian Pacific at Haley's Station, it
was also a transcontinental railway. A bridge was built over McNaughton Creek,
which was in its path.
A favourite spot for picking wild strawberries was along the
railroad tracks. Choke cherry trees were on the trail to the Bridge. It was a
challenge back then for those who dared to cross the bridge before a train
would come. Really, it was a no-no to cross. (top)