The Bangor and Aroostook Railroad
Red, white and blue boxcars that said State of Maine Products made the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad a household name. Models of the 1950’s boxcars circled under Christmas trees for years and are still available today. The railroad was chartered in 1891 and survived until 2003. It was best known for heated boxcars to ship potatoes. At one time BAR had the second-largest United States railroad-owned temperature controlled car fleet second only to the Santa Fe. BAR also made a name for itself and the state of Maine shipping paper for newspapers and magazines. It was once said that the finest newspapers and magazines printed on the US East Coast were printed on Maine paper that had been shipped by BAR. Through the years BAR had 150 steam locomotives then switched over to diesel in the 1940s to purchase locomotives that still survive to this day, earning the reputation of keeping locomotives until they were antiques. With 616 route miles in 1930, declining to 433 in 2000, at the time of the ceasing of operations in 2003, the B&A was one of only two railroads in the State of Maine operating under its original chartered name.
Since operations ceased, more than two decades ago, the former employees, friends, fans and neighbors of the Bangor and Aroostook have kept its memory alive!