Well, I'm glad you asked. The CP Carman subdivision is a long-forgotten section of track that used to run between Elm Creek, Manitoba and Plum Coulee, Manitoba. This was a classic grain-hauling branch line and it served as such until it was lifted in the 1980s.
The line was one of three railways from the US into Manitoba, as part of James Jerome Hill's Great Northern railway empire. The others went to Winnipeg (now the CN Letellier subdivision) and The Pas via Brandon.
Apparently the line did not do well. In 1928 the centre portion between Plum Coulee and Carman was taken over by the Canadian Pacific Railway and it became the CP Carman subdivision.
The portion from Gretna to Plum Coulee and the portion from Carman to Portage la Prairie were abandoned and removed.
In 1938Here's how it was in the September 25th, 1938 CP Employee Timetable.
|0.0||ELM CREEK Junction with CP Glenboro subdivision||65|
|13.2||CN interlocked crossing (CN Carman subdivision?)||-|
|24.1||CN interlocked crossing (CN Miami subdivision)||-|
Or, if you'd prefer, here's a scan of the 1938 timetable.
You can see that mixed train service was offered between Winnipeg and Gretna via trains 233 and 234, twice a week. The April 28, 1940 public timetable service shows pretty much the same information.
In 1952In the next employee timetable I have, the 1952/04/27 CP Prairie (Manitoba) employee timetable, the mileages are the same but many of the sidings have been removed from the timetable. The mixed train was still running, though!
The next several 1950s timetables show no changes.
A great article in Canadian Rail #285 (PDF) says that the section between Carman and Kronsgart was not used since 1964.
- No mixed train!
- The sidings are back, reduced slightly in capacity, perhaps due to longer cars in use.
- The CNR crossing at mile 24.2 is no longer interlocked.
The October 27, 1974 timetable is the same except that all sidings show "Nil".
In 1976The Carman subdivision was downgraded to a spur by the April 25, 1976 timetable:
CARMAN SPUR Westward; Elm Creek to Carman... 15.0 miles. Rule 105 applies. MAXIMUM SPEED 15 M.P.H. PERMANENT SLOW ORDER 10 M.P.H. Carman to end of track.The spur is still present in the October 30, 1983 timetable.
In 1984Oddly enough, in the June 3, 1984 timetable, the Carman subdivision reappeared!
In 1992The CP Carman subdivision was finally abandoned in 1992.
|Barnsley grain elevators|
There are two grain elevators in Barnsley that were once on the Carman subdivision.
In Carman, there is a Viterra facility at the north end of town that is on a piece of the former Carman subdivision.
Plum Coulee still exists, of course, on the CP La Riviere subdivision. There is no trace of the line to Carman in the town, although it is pretty easy to trace from Google Maps.