Blennerhassett Family Tree
Genealogy one-name study - by Bill Jehan
   Introduction      History      Canadian Pacific Rail
 
Canadian Pacific Railway
 
William Leadman Blennerhassett (b.1861 d.1949)
 
 
 
Steam Locomotive Engine 2700  "William Blennerhassett" 1919-1959 
 
 
photo: courtesy of Canadian Pacific Archives
 
 
 
Steam Engine 2700 (built by Canadian Pacific at its Angus Shops in Montreal 1919, scrapped 1959) was named for Engineer William Leadman Blennerhassett (b.19-Oct-1861 d.8-May-1949) in recognition of his achievements and loyal service with Canadian Pacific since joining in 1881, when the company was formed.
Before this, Engine 2534 (built by CP 1908, scrapped 1958) may also have carried William Blennerhassett's name during the years 1918-1919.
 
CP engines were first named after enginemen in 1918, the names displayed below the company crest on both sides of the cab. This photo quality is too poor to clearly show the WM. BLENNERHASSETT
 

 
 
The planning and construction of a trans-continental railway between Eastern Canada and British Columbia was an essential condition to enable BC to join the Canadian Federation in 1871 and the principal motivation for the formation of Canadian Pacific in 1881.
 
Building a rail bridge over the treacherous Nepigon River in Ontario took three years and was completed on 2-Apr-1885. On that same day William Blennerhassett drove Engine 67 along the north shore of Lake Superior & over the new Nepigon bridge, carrying material for railway construction on the other side, between Nepigon & Schreiber, Ontario. He thus made history as engineer of the first train to cross this last major obstacle in the path of the Canadian Pacific railway.
 
Engine 67 was a "Kingston" locomotive, built in 1882 by the Canadian Locomotive Co. of Kingston, Ontario. Weighing 60 tons and measuring 45 feet from tender to cowcatcher, it was reassigned to Mattawa, Ontario in 1904 and scrapped in 1910.
 
The official completion and opening of the Nepigon rail bridge was on 18-Apr-1885, two CPR trains led by Engine 18 and Engine 5 crossing the bridge 16 days after William Blennerhassett in Engine 67.
 
 
NEPIGON BRIDGE 
photo: courtesy of Canadian Pacific Archives 
H. & N. 
 
 
The line through this area was completed on 16-May-1885 when the last spike was driven, west of Jack Fish Bay. The true "last spike" of the CP trans-continental railway was driven 7-Nov-1885 at Craigellachie, British Columbia. 
 
 
 
"Toronto Daily Star", Saturday 2-Oct-1937, p.15
 
 
copyright © 1937 Toronto Daily Star
 
 
 
 
NOTE: This article names him William A. Blennerhassett in error, confusing him with his eldest son William Arthur Blennerhassett, b.1896, also a long service employee of CPR 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
photo: courtesy of Canadian Pacific Archives (Image Ref. NS19991)
 
 
 
The first Canadian Pacific trans-continental passenger train from Montreal,
just arrived, on time, at the Pacific terminal, Port Moody, near Vancouver BC
on 4-July-1886.
 
This was pulled by Engine 371, not by William Blennerhassett's Engine 67 as wrongly implied in the "Toronto Daily Star" caption to photograph (3).  
 
 
 
 
 
 
Vancouver, British Columbia, as it was in 1907 
 
 

 
 
This is an early film of the streets of Vancouver, British Columbia, made in 1907 by U.S. filmmaker William Harbeck - see http://www.vancouverhistory.ca/archives_harbeck_film.htm
 
Harbeck stood at the front of a streetcar (tram) of the BC Electric Railway Co., his hand-cranked camera securely bolted down.
 
RhettRowe on YouTube has kindly provided Vancouver street locations: the film begins (at 0:12) heading north-west on Granville Street, where the "Vancouver City Centre" Station now is.
 
at 1:18 turns sharp right onto West Hastings Street, heading east, past Carrall Street.
 
at 2:30 is approaching the only motorcar to be seen in the film, parked on the right side.
 
at 3:21 the scene changes: is now heading south on Carrall Street,
             then turns right onto West Cordova Street, heading west.
 
at 4:18 turns left on Cambie Street, heading south as far as Hastings Street.
 
at 4:32 the scene changes: is now heading west on Robson Street, near Burrard Street.
 
at 4:43 passing the "Manhattan" apartment building under construction on the right side,
             at the junction of Robson Street and Thurlow Street;
             continues west along Robson Street, to Broughton Street.
 
at 5:13 the scene changes: is now heading east on Davie Street past Bidwell Street.
 
at 6:09 the film ends, the streetcar still heading east on Davie Street, near Bute Street.
  
Five years later, aged 44 years, William Harbeck was hired by the British "White Star Line" to record shipboard life on board R.M.S. Titanic during its maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York. He was one of 1,502 people who died in the early morning of 15-April-1912, as the ship sank following the unfortunate collision with an iceberg - unsurprisingly that film did not survive.
 
MUSIC: "Calendar" by "Your Hand in Mine"
from a readaptation of the 1933 Japanese Silent Film "Yogoto no Yume" ("Every Night Dreams").
 
In BC vehicles changed from driving on the left to driving on the the right on 1-January-1922.
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Key 
 
 
 
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copyright © 2008-2017 Bill Jehan