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From: "Daniel G DOT McFadden" dan DOT mcfadden AT gmail DOT com
Date: Thu, 19 Jul 2012 00:09:49 -0400
Subject: Miracle Worker
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Tonight at long last, I watched a movie, a scene of which I saw being filmed
at Gladstone more than 50 years ago. The movie is the Miracle Worker and
here is my little tale.

In 1961, I was a newly minted driver and began to explore a bit. I quickly
found there was nothing much better than the Chester Junction/ Lake
Junction/ HO junction scene and that was my destination on many days. I was
especially enamored with the CNJ Green Pond job which always had Baby Face
Baldwin's. On one such visit, there was a surprise in the yard, three Black
River & Western coaches. I asked around and found that they were headed to
Gladstone for a movie shoot.

So on Monday, July 17th in 1961 I stationed myself in Summit for a chase of
the P&D drill which this day had RS-3 number 1048 with 13 cars: 9 freight, a
wooden hack, and the three BR&W cars. From Summit, I headed out to
Bernardsville, and then Gladstone. I wish now that I had followed the train
more closely but back then I was not very familiar with the roads. At
Gladstone, the three BR&W cars were spotted by the freight house with the
RS-3 on the east end. All the filming took place by the freight house. I
hung around for quite a while but my 19 year old patience gave out before
the sequence where the coaches were pulled out of the station.

It is indeed a bit pathetic that it took me 51 years to get around to seeing
this movie but until recently, I did not even know the name of the movie
that I saw being filmed! The Miracle Worker is the great true story of the
blind and deaf Helen Keller and her teacher, Anne Sullivan. The rail scene
occurs early in the film and is well done. The BR&W coaches are quite
appropriate for a story set in the 1880's. The movie itself blew me away -
it is a powerful story.

The attached pictures are scans of the old negatives, some of which have not
held up particularly well. They were stored in glassines that seem to have
hurt more than preserved. Damaged or not, here is what they show: the first
two were taken at Summit, the next four at Bernardsville, and the last six
at Gladstone. My favorite shot here is the westbound two car MU at
Bernardsville (train 409) where it seems a package has just been dropped

If you seek out the movie, note that there are several versions available.
The one of interest was released in 1962 starring Anne Bancroft and Patty

Dan McFadden


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