The Wiscasset Waterville & Farmington Railroad and its role in the modernizing and
defragmenting of our town, WHITEFIELD.
The WW&F Railroad was, without a doubt, the most important catalyst in moving our town into another century.
Whitefield, already split by the river north to south and subdivided further by the 3 "privileges" (falls or drops in the elevation of the river) our people had quite naturally gathered in villages around the mill dams at Coopers Mills (2 dams), North Whitefield (1 dam) and Kings Mills/Whitefield (3 dams).
Like the beautiful and powerful Sheepscot river the WW&F railroad too, ran right up the very center of our town (beside the rivers edge) - promising to service these relatively busy centers. There were two flag stops, two wood trestles, an iron bridge and three major stations: Whitefield station, North Whitefield station and Coopers Mills station. Our town had more stops than any other along the line, and more rail. There were 3 high schools, 3 Granges, 4 churches, 4 post offices and 9 stores in town that could imagine great benefit from these daily scheduled connections.
The business potential and social expectations were enormous, the railroad allowed and indeed encouraged our three villages to be connected yet to remain autonomous.
Today without the connecting railroad and still without a single population center, we struggle with our sense of community. Town meetings are a place where our geographic differences are played out annually in matters civic and economic. Ours is one on the clearest example of what happens when humans permit nature or unstudied promise to determine their destiny without question. Community planning efforts continues to battle these historic hurdles.
To see historic images that illustrate the physical presence, enormous promise and temporal nature of this important little narrow gauge railroad to our unique town, Whitefield - see :
the final Whitefield WW&F Wreck
Whitefield WW&F Bridge
North Whitefield WW&F Station
the North Whitefield WW&F Wreck
Coopers Mills WW&F Station
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