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Author: Clementine MacLeod

The Retirement of Keene Station

76 Year Old Station May Soon Close

 

This article, appearing in the February 1st, 1958 edition of the Peterborough Examiner describes the Otonabee Township Council’s decision to retire the Keene Railway station. The station, which was established in 1882, functioned primarily as an outgoing and receiving depot for various types of freight and mail. However, throughout the years, the station demonstrated a lack of patronage and use that would eventually force the council to call for its retirement.

Though the historic nature of the station made its retirement a nostalgic and sentimental event, the unused railway would eventually transform into another beloved community landmark: our very own Lang Hastings Trail.

 

A (Literally) Trailblazing History

The above article, penned by D. Gayle Nelson, details the dramatic history of the Keene station and surrounding railway, as told by local newspaper articles. Nelson makes reference to a 1958 article describing the retirement of the Keene station, a 1967 council resolution, and the shocking 1884 accident where a freight train ran off its tracks straight into a swamp.

Nelson’s article, as well as the momentous events it describes, helps to illustrate the railway’s vivid past. Which, in turn, demonstrates the historical importance of what is now the Lang Hastings Trail.