Re: Canadian grain in the USA?


I have got to lean with John,

        I have read in the past * that large amounts of grains came south into the Twin Ports of Duluth and Superior via the DW&P in the early 1900's give or take.

       Have I ever read that some of this grain ever made it down to the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul? No - however I must add that absence of proof is not proof of the contrary.

       Given the large amounts that came into the Twin ports from Canada via the DW&P, I cannot lightly dismiss that some Canadian grain came south to the Twin Cities. Yes, some went out via water and the DSS&A, however grain was in the top six commodities going southbound as per later. 

     Why do I believe Canadian?

    The Northern Pacific Railway sorted eastbound grain from areas west of Staples, (ND, MT) at Staples, MN breaking the grain into train movements east to Twin Ports or Twin Cities. To think they would ship grain to the Twin Ports only to divert it to the Twin Cities strikes me as illogical.

     And northern MN is good for growing lumber, iron ore, and walleyes, however not grain. 

     Looking further, I do find grain as a southbound, and a northbound commodity between the Twin Cities and Twin Ports. It is not specifically listed as Canadian, however I cannot dismiss it as not Canadian.

     Both from NP records from 1926 (NP vs MILW overhead traffic) and a later 1941 letter listing traffic movements support the above. 

      In June of 1926, 202 cars of grain went southbound from the Twin Ports to the Twin Cities on the NP, 58 cars of grain on the CMStP&P. 

      No numbers off the 1941 letter, only in the listings of commodities southbound, it is listed earlier in the six primary shipments as opposed to later.

      As I am modeling this stretch of track in 1953, I am so darn glad this all moved in boxcars as opposed to all the open top cars I need for the lake coal coming south.

                                                                 Hope this helps.    Jim Dick - Roseville, MN

    * NP Rwy Corporate records at the MN Historical Society, Railway Age.

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