Telling the story of 200 years  of White Mountain History

                        Cog Railway Photos Pg. 2
Unless otherwise stated, photos are from the collection of the 
                                author, Robert W. Bermudes, Jr.

                                Kro-Flite Kamp Main Building

William Barron and the Barron, Merrill, and Barron Company leased an acre of land from the B&M in the spring of 1925 at the Cog upper base area and built the Kro-Flite Kamps for visitors travelling by car. During that first season, the Kamps included a main building that housed the restaurant, manager’s quarters, and store. There were also one or two cabins during that first season, first generating revenue in early August. Gasoline (see the pump on the extreme left of the image) was first sold in late August 1925. The sign hanging on the eaves reads “Parking 50¢.”


                                Kro-Flite Station, ca. 1925-1927

The completion of the branchline from the Fabyan House in 1876 moved the center of gravity for passenger activities from the original base area (upper base) down about a quarter mile to the current shop area where the branchline and Cog transfer station was located (lower base). The 1895 fire at the upper base area and the destruction of the first Marshfield House completed the shift. The center of passenger activity remained at the lower base until  the Kro-Flite Kamps were built at the upper base in 1925. Catering to passengers arriving by automobile, the Kamps provided a large parking area, a store selling soda, food, film, ice cream, and other tourist items, and cabins for over-night guests. Rather than expect auto tourists to walk down to the lower base, a small station was built at the upper base, next to the tracks at the Ammoonusuc River. This station was called Kro-Flite after the “kamps” nearby. (In 1926 Rev. Guy Roberts suggested that the upper base area be called “Marsh-Field” in honor of Sylvester Marsh, the inventor of the  Cog Railway, and Darby Field, credited with being the first European to climb to the summit of Mt. Washington. Roberts had the ear of the Boston & Maine Railroad and soon the name of the upper base was changed to Marsh-Field. That name replaced Kro-Flite on the small building soon thereafter, relegating the name Kro-Flite to the ash heap of time.) The small station was replaced with the second Marshfield House in 1938.

                                Engine at Transfer Table, 1935

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In the years between the end of the branchline from Fabyan in 1931,and the construction of the new Marshfield House in 1938, the center of passenger activities at the base was diffuse. Automobiles—personal or limousines provided by Henry Teague—brought most passengers to the Cog.  The upper base with the expanded Kro-Flite Kamp infrastructure was the nominal center of operations for the passengers and the lower base, with its locomotive-supporting infrastructure, was the center of operations for the trains. This 1935 image shows the fireman and engineer filling the tender with water (note the hose at the left of the man standing in overalls). The ash pile spilling out from under the transfer table tracks speaks of many locomotives emptying their ash pans at that spot. The coal tipple, the source of all that coal ash, was located in a building just to the right and downhill of this location. The locomotive (Tip Top) is on the transfer table that moved  locomotives and coaches from their sheds (coaches on the left and locomotives on the right) to the mainline. In the background is the boarding house for Cog employees. The well-dressed man on the extreme left suggests how at least some passengers dressed for vacations in the 1930s.

                                ca. 1958 Base Station Layout

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William Barron and the Barron, Merrill, and Barron Company leased land from the B&M Railroad in the spring of 1925 and built The Kro-Flite Kamps . During that season they built the main building (the L-shaped building in the cabins area) that housed a restaurant, manager’s quarters, and store. A couple of cabins were also available  for over-night guests.   Visitors arriving by automobile, but not staying overnight, paid  fifty cents to park their cars while they rode the Cog. When Henry N. Teague was brought in to manage the Cog, Summit House, and base operations for the B&M at the start of the 1931 season he expanded the number of cabins. The result of that expansion is seen in this 1958 site plan. Also visible is the outline of the Marshfield House (1938-1998) Teague constructed with his crew in 1938.

                                         Upper Base Area, 1991

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The entire upper base is visible in this aerial view. The(new) Marshfield House (1938-1998) is on the left next to the bridge over the Ammoonusuc River. Near the coal tipple a yellow payloader is coaling a locomotive on the “wrong” track. Usually the trains are coaled on the track in the foreground. The brown building in the center of the image housed the offices and laundry. Cottages for overnight guests surround the oval at the top of the image. The large building on the cottage oval was the main building of the Kro-Flite Kamps (restaurant, manager’s quarters, and store) and later the Cog Railway Museum. The Cog Railway General Manager’s cabin is to the left of the museum and partially obscured by trees. The current Marshfield House (1994-   ) is located in the area between where the museum and office building once were.


                       Page 3 of Cog Railway Photos
                       Page 1 of Cog Railway Photos
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