Published recently is this history of E. M. Baldwin & Sons, the most innovative and successful builder of narrow gauge diesel industrial railway equipment in Australia, best known for their introduction to the Australian sugar industry of the 2ft gauge bogie canefield locomotive.
From the mid 1950s Australia’s sugar millers were rapidly replacing their steam locomotives with diesels, with the market split between two large companies – Clyde Engineering Co. Pty Ltd, and Commonwealth Engineering (Queensland) Pty Ltd. The family firm of E. M. Baldwin & Sons would seem to have been a most unlikely competitor. Still reflecting its farming origins with large scale egg production, its small general engineering business specialised in custom designed stainless steel food preparation equipment.
But in 1962 the firm was approached to build a small canefield locomotive, and a year later it started its pioneering work with flame-proofed rail vehicles for coal mining applications. Numerous diesel locomotives followed. The book includes a detailed production list of the Company’s locomotives, and scale drawings of many of its locomotives.
The author has had direct access to the Company’s owners, and to many of the records of the Company, so this is the definitive history and gives much detail on the performance of individual locomotives. The book is published by Australia’s society for Industrial and Narrow Gauge Railways, the Light Railway Research Society of Australia
Hard cover, 160 pages, A4 size, 148 photographs, and 16 diagrams, references, bibliography, and index.
$A44.00 plus postage.
There is currently no British distributor for this book but at current exchange rates, it is a bargain to British purchasers. Further details and an order form can be found at http://www.lrrsa.org.au/Lrr_Pubs.htm