About Me

Hey everyone, my name is Dave and this is my site about the Port Arthur, Duluth and Western Railway (P.A.D.& W). I thought I’d take this opportunity to tell you a little about myself.

On the Kinghorn grade at Scroll Lake with Luna, August 2022.

I’m a forty-something guy from Thunder Bay, Ontario who has been researching the history of this small railway since 1994. I first became interested in the PD or Pee Dee Railway (as it’s commonly called) way back in the fall of 1990, but I really did not begin any formal research on it until four years later. Since then I’ve been hooked, and my plans are to write a book at some point in the future. In the meantime, I’m currently finishing up a book on the Pigeon River Lumber Company, and have begun serious exploration on the former CN Kinghorn Subdivision. The site is an opportunity to showcase some of the research that I’ve done on area railways and related industries, as well as to keep everyone updated on my efforts via the blog, which I occasionally hijack for some personal or history related stuff.

When I’m not surfing the net for information, posting pictures and video or tromping through the bush on field work (aka railway archaeology), I moonlight as a history teacher and instructional leader at St. Patrick High School. I absolutely love my job, and feel very privileged that I’ve been able to do this for the past 25 years. When I’m not in the classroom enlightening young minds (hopefully!), I can be found at certain times of the year on the football field. I’ve coached our junior football team for the past 23 years. It gives me an opportunity to help kids outside the classroom and interact with them in a different medium. I’m also a former Army reservist, having served time with the Lake Superior Scottish Regiment (38 CBG, 3rd Canadian Division) back in the early 1990s.

My other hobbies include hiking and photography/videography, as well as being a pretty ardent Dallas Cowboys fan. I’m married and have two sons.

14 responses to “About Me

  1. Daniel Postlethwaite

    February 18, 2012 at 15:46

    Hey I look forward to reading more of your blog (: Keep it up.

    • Padwrr

      February 18, 2012 at 16:10

      Thanks. I’ll do my best.

      • Thomas Falls

        January 1, 2021 at 17:43

        Just found your site.
        Than you for all that you have put into it.
        – Tom (LSSR 1971-1976.)

      • Padwrr

        January 1, 2021 at 17:45

        You’re welcome. Thanks for visiting.

  2. Dave Nakonechny

    January 8, 2022 at 13:14

    My cousin in Kenora directed me to your site Am very much interested in this as our grandfather was a section foreman and worked for the CNOR with my mother being born in Yonde and schooled at Watcomb, my father also worked in Valora I thank you for all your work preserving this little bit of history

    • Padwrr

      January 8, 2022 at 16:05

      I’m glad you liked the info and I appreciate the support.

    • Greg Zdep

      January 12, 2022 at 18:36

      Dave …Glad you made it to this great site Dave is well versed on the the history of the railway

  3. Linda Van Hal

    July 13, 2022 at 11:35

    Hi! My grandfather, John Eund

    • Linda Van Hal

      July 13, 2022 at 11:39

      Having trouble with form. My grandfather, John Eklund was a section foreman along this line. Following because I will never get to visit this area in person. Thanks for all you do. I was born in Beardmore.

      • Padwrr

        July 13, 2022 at 11:51

        Hi Linda. Thanks for visiting. I’m glad that you found something related to your family. I was just east of Beardmore last month finishing up some of my explorations. Those videos will be posted on this site over the winter. I am hoping to maybe turn all this work into a book someday.

  4. David Hamilton

    January 28, 2023 at 11:27

    I’ve enjoyed your numerous FB posts and would like to know if you have any books published related to your railway research, especially the P & D RR

    • Padwrr

      January 28, 2023 at 12:23

      Thank you, and thanks for following along. I have not published any books on the PAD&W as of yet, besides a short article back in 2015. I do have on book in the works on the Pigeon River Lumber Company, which does speak extensively of the railway, which will hopefully get published in the next few years.

      • David Hamilton

        January 28, 2023 at 12:41

        Dave, Thanks for getting back to me. Please keep me informed of your book’s progress. Pigeon River Lumber is also one of my interests. Publishing a book requires a lot of time, effort and work, especially for people like you who take research seriously. I used to live in ‘The Bay’, and grew up with an appreciation of the region’s history. The P& D, as I recall, ran through a Stanley where my dad’s uncle had a farm on the other side of the Kam. David

        Sent from my iPad


      • Padwrr

        January 28, 2023 at 13:04

        You’re welcome. The book is mostly done, save for some tweaks and work on two chapters. Everything got put on hold because of Covid. I need to complete some research in Toronto and do additional field work in Minnesota. Hopefully that will happen this spring, so I can finish writing next winter. I have send a proposal in to the Thunder Bay Museum and with any luck they will be interested in publishing the book. I will post any updates I have on my social media accounts.


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