Celebrate 100 years of Steam Locomotive 11. Trundle on down to Ladysmith’s Historic Rail Yard, 614 Oyster Bay Dr. See newly restored Locomotives back on tracks. Enjoy Live Music by Local Musicians, Heritage Displays, Food, “Smokies for the Locie”, Poetry, Stories, Art, Videos, Hands-on Activities, Model Trains, Competitions and Treats.
Event Coordinator: Shirley Blackstaff – 250-245-3075
LADYSMITH FOREST FESTIVAL
Celebrating 100 years of 1923 Locomotive 11 – May 27, 2023
WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF LOCOMOTIVE 11?
Ladysmith’s steam Locomotive #11 was built in 1923 by Baldwin Locomotive Company, Philadelphia, USA. It weighs approximately 144,000 lbs. In 1937 Locomotive #11 came to Comox Logging & Railway Company.
In 1945 she was moved from the Courtenay operation to Ladysmith then worked full-time hauling logs from Nanaimo Lakes to the Ladysmith Log Dump. While working for Comox Logging & Railway Company, Locomotive #11 hauled 1.4 billion board feet of logs, making Ladysmith the centre of the logging industry on Vancouver Island. On December 16, 1960, Locomotive #11 made her last official run. She was put on standby service when the Baldwin switcher No. 7138 diesel locomotive took her place.
WHY PRESERVE LADYSMITH’S HERITAGE?
- Ladysmith & District Historical Society’s Industrial Heritage Preservation volunteers have for 7 years been bringing the past to life by working with our community to proudly preserve Ladysmith’s forest industry buildings, locomotives, rail yard and artifacts in a way that our history becomes a “must see” part of the Arts & Heritage Hub.
- We have received firsthand accounts from local seniors/elders who worked in the forest industry to give insight into their jobs, experiences and community contributions.
WHY IS OUR COMMUNITY CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF LADYSMITH’S 1923 STEAM LOCOMOTIVE #11 with a FOREST FESTIVAL?
- To understand the heritage significance of the Comox Logging & Railway Company Machine Shop Buildings and Rail yard and acknowledge it as
- a rare, intact remnant of Ladysmith’s industrial logging past and
- a tangible reminder of the key role Comox Logging & Railway Company played in the resuscitation of Ladysmith’s economy which was suffering from the effects of the Depression and closure of the coal mines in 1931.
- To respect the early-day forest industry workers who contributed significantly to Ladysmith’s social and economic growth.
- To share the stories and photographs sent to us from the families of local forest workers. The booklet Ladysmith’s Forest Workers Share their Tales which we compiled, will honour Ladysmith’s forest workers by sharing their roles and experiences. It will be a gift to our main contributors and special guests at the May 27, 2023 – 100th Anniversary of Locomotive #11 Celebration Event, Ladysmith Forest Festival.
- To have souvenir mugs, booklets, and other items available at a minimal cost
- To share Locomotive #11’s history with a slide show presentation
- To show the restored Plymouth #107 gas locomotive and Humdirgen running on the tracks
- To present displays, framed photos and information about Locomotive #11 and the other rolling stock
- To honour and thank our dedicated volunteers who have given their time and expertise to refurbish Locomotive #11 professionally, Plymouth #107 and the other industrial artifacts
- To acknowledge the many hours volunteers have given: researching, collecting information and photographs, writing booklets and video-taping our history
- To thank the Town of Ladysmith for its support
- To acknowledge donors who assisted with restoration work and Forest Festival activities
- To entertain visitors with local musicians and artists
- To provide food and refreshments
- To have a garden scale model train set up running around a track and involve families in heritage activities and games.
- To have crafts for the children where they will create hands-on projects to take home
- To acknowledge the rich Stz’uminus First Nation culture concerning the forest and learn about Ladysmith’s forest heritage with a positive community spirit.
- To recognize the importance of the forest and forest industry to our communities by a visit to the Ladysmith Museum on 1st Ave to see the new spring exhibit – “Our Treemendous Fascinating Forest” and to attend and participate in the Ladysmith Forest Festival at 614 Oyster Bay Drive on May 27, 2023.
WHAT ELSE WILL BE HAPPENING AT THE WATERFRONT THE WEEKEND OF MAY 27 – 28th?
- Our evening event on Saturday, May 27th, from 5 pm to 7 pm will be a Sea Food BBQ at the Ladysmith Community Marina’s big tent. Our volunteers and guests will join together to enjoy food, music and the company of one another, completing a memorable day – full of fun and appreciation of our local heritage.
- Ladysmith Maritime Society is celebrating 125 years of BC’s oldest registered Sailing Ship, “Dorothy,” and having a Heritage Boat Festival at the Ladysmith Community Marina on Sunday, May 28, 2023, from 8 am to 3 pm. Be sure to take in this event too!
MAY I HELP? You may help with the organization of Ladysmith Forest Festival or be a volunteer on May 27, 2023. We need volunteers, so please let us know if you are available.
Contact: Shirley Blackstaff, Event Coordinator, at 250-245-3075 and email@example.com