H I S T O R I C   S T E A M

Railroad Times
From Newspaper Archives

Source: Coudersport Area Newspaper                                               Date: Circa 1882                  

Seth Lewis Poem

 This unnamed poem was written by Seth Lewis while on his deathbed and published in the local newspaper. One of Potter County's best known lawyers of the late 1800's, his words embrace the excitement the area felt for the new rail line.

And now we all are hopeful,
That in a few months more,
We can go by rail to Coudersport
As well as Jersey Shore."
So sang our youthful singers
In August, ninety three,
When with speeches, song and banquet
We were welcoming Magee.

Now that hope has reached fulfillment,
And every bosom thrills
To hear the train from Coudersport
Come puffing o'er the hills.
The bands of steel bind
Our county east and west,
And the C. & P.A. railroad
Is now are welcome guest.

The great work is accomplished
Let no complaint be made
That through trains rushing by us
May hurt our local trade.
We'll rejoice with every neighbor
In the good that comes to him;
That Raymond, Gold and Colesburg
Are also in the swim.
The good old town of Wellsville,
That always had our trade,
Can now have time to ponder
The great mistake she made.
She pondered long and deeply,
But pondered not in vain,
For then she acted promptly
her losses to regain.

We wished a railroad junction,
But let us make no fuss,
If our neighbors are the gainers,
Some good will come to us.
The railroads once were timid
Our mountains used to shun
But now they climb our top most peaks
As a breakfast spell of fun.

Now Olean and Corning
Send daily o'er our hills,
And Williamsport and Wellsville
Take the product of our mills.
The bars that blocked our progress
Seem now all taken down,
And almost every hamlet
Is now a railroad town.

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