Cornfield Crossing #15271

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The Story

It’s another work day on the farm as farm work never really ends. But this farmer must wait with his red Farmall H tractor to cross the railroad tracks into his next field over. Corn cuttings lie all around the harvested fields on this November day. The corn has been brought in for the season, but there’s always more work to be done for both man and tractor. Today, a loaded spreader is hitched on behind.

It’s another work day on the railroad too, a shortline that connects the little towns and villages out through the farming valley. The 2-6-0 Everett Railroad steam locomotive #11 goes by making black smoke, pulling a little local train with both freight and some passengers through the farmland. The engineer gives a little toot on the steam whistle to add to the noise and the farmer waves as usual.

The farm straddles the little shortline railroad, so there are a few informal tractor crossings out here among the cornrows. To get across the rails, the farmer simply filled dirt over the tracks high enough to take the bumps out, easing the wear on his old red Farmall H tractor. Old farm equipment is still very useful.

The working farmer and the working train have crossed paths out here on the farm many times before. In all their workdays, the farmer stays on his land making and growing his crops, and the train goes through taking and bringing people and goods. It’s a mutual intersection in working life.

Location: near Martinsburg, Pennsylvania, Blair County.

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