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July 13, 2020

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A century ago in Bluffton

Moving quickly through Bluffton 100 years ago, this Lake Erie and Western Railroad freight train is steaming at a fast clip from Sandusky to Lima and possibly on its way to the end of the line in Peoria, Illinois.

The photo was taken sometime between 1920 and 1924 and is in the collection of  Dick Boehr. The mill on the east side of the track was razed about 15 years ago. The station, seen at the edge on the left side is now located on Spring Street at the Buckeye as the home of the Bluffton Sportmen's Club.

Other things to notice include a switch and siding track on east side of the main line, removed years ago. The signal tower is the large pole near the station.

It is difficult to identify exactly the type of locomotive in the photo. Based upon steam power during this era, it could possibly be a 2-8-0 wheel arrangement building for the LE&W in 1904.

In the next photo, probably taken the same day, is a view of the Bluffton depot. A horse-drive U.S. Mail wagon is parked along side the station. A partial view of the signal tower, informing the engineer to either stop or continue thorugh the station, can also be viewed.