Newfoundland was sparsely populated by coastal fishing towns through the late 19th century. In 1880, a dream was born to build a railway. Limited service began in 1882. Eventually, over 906 miles of narrow-gauge track were laid. The main route stretched from St. John’s in the southeast, through the middle of the island and ending in Port aux Basques in the southwest. Although initially heralded as a success, the railway was plagued by financial problems. Passenger schedules ended in 1969. Freight service stopped in 1988. You can learn more history at the Railway Society of Newfoundland Historic Train Site. Among the exhibits are several old trains such as steam Locomotive No. 593. “Newfie Bullet” operated over 1.5 million miles from 1921 until 1939. She reached a top speed of 30 m.p.h.