1905 - 1983
LINWOOD MOODY - of Union, ME was instrumental in creating the Edaville Railroad in Carver along with Ellis Atwood on Mr. Atwood’s 1800- acre cranberry farm. Linwood wrote the book The Maine Two-Footers, the story of the two-foot railroads in Maine.
A couple articles about Linwood Moody
(I think both are from the Courier-Gazette, July '83)
Hidden Under Bushels
To the Editor: Lest time starts erasing memories too soon, I would like to call attention to parts of the story of Linwood W. Moody, of Union who passed away on July 13th. It might be said that his light was hidden “under a bushel,” for there were few people who really knew him, and I sometimes wonder if any of us really did. He sought few people, yet through the Union Post Office came quantities of mail, addressed to him personally! Except for “railroad minded” persons, he was little known in Knox County — yet his driveway frequently was filled with cars, parked there by visitors! “Little known” yet local bookstores carried copies of his book “The Maine Two Footers,” which sold all over the world! “Little known” yet authors and historically minded people came to share his knowledge. That he was an appreciated historian is attested to by the piles of books in his library, that came to him as complimentary copies, some dedicated to him. People who were fortunate enough to receive letters from him will remember with smiles his humorous statements, and their world was brightened. Who else, in his book, under acknowledgments would express thanks “to our shaggy cat, who wasted one life lying on the box of manuscript and photos and notes, so that they would not blow away!” Formal education was ended early in his life, but his good mind, and resulting self-education, enabled him to gain entrance to the society of well educated people. He expanded his horizons by means of his correspondence with people in other countries — he even, on his own, acquired enough language skill to write creditable letters in French, German, and Spanish! In his years before retirement he served as station agent at Brooks, and even there a path was made by interested people to the door of the station. Before that he was of great assistance to Ellis D. Atwood of Ocean Spray Cranberry fame in the formation of the Edaville Railroad which is still a great tourist attraction at South Carver, on Cape Cod. He was also a photographer of ability, and the results of that skill went far and wide, if he lacked a camera, his pencil could supply in excellent substitute. His interests were broader than just railroads, as he was often consulted on facts about Maine history, and particularly the history of Knox County. He disliked publicity — I hope I have not violated any of his wishes in my attempt to spread our appreciation of “Lin” Moody.
To the Editor: Your obituary in last Thursday’s Courier-Gazette on Linwood W. Moody of Union stated that “he spent most of his life working on the railroad,” as indeed he had. For many years he was employed as a crossing tender in Brooks by the Belfast & Moosehead Lake Railroad. But he did more than work on the railroad; he recorded much of Maine’s railroad history. His book on the Maine “two-footers,” the narrow-gauge railroads which crossed much of the state until the 1930s, is a railroad classic. It is written in a rollicking style that brings back to life the tiny trains pulled by lilliputian steam locomotives which swayed and clickitty-clacked over tracks just 24 inches from rail to rail. A number of Linwood Moody's articles on narrow-gauge railroads appeared in Down East magazine —“The Doodlebug Railroad” (Georges Valley), “The Rockport Railroad,” “Mighty Midgets of the Old F & M (Franklin and Megantic), and “Warren Depot.” All are reprinted in “All Aboard for Yesterday,” an anthology of more than 40 railroad stories which had appeared in “Down East.” Although I never met Mr. Moody, I have had the pleasure of reading his delightful accounts of an era in Maine railroading that many still remember with nostalgia.
J. Malcolm Barter
A site of interest is: City Point Central Railroad & Museum, located in Belfast, Maine. City Point recently purchased Brooks station, where Linwood was station agent.