About 8 miles from Dundon was a small settlement nestled in a clearing in the valley. It was known as Cressmont. It was here that the ERC&L Company built and operated a small dairy. At one point a herd of 65 cows grazed in the meadows along the track. Many photos of trains were taken here because of the ease of access...the county road crossed the BC&G right near the dairy.
This wonderful photo (from page 46 of Warden's BC&G book) looking west toward Dundon shows the major elements of the Cressmont scene. The dairy is clearly visible and the barn and silo can be seen to the far right. The passing siding and the road to Swandale are visible on the left. The Shay is on the bridge, the same bridge as in the spectacular Fellure photo above.
Here is a photo taken in 2007 from almost the same spot as the photo above. Only the foundation of the dairy remains.
Collection of Richard Manning - circa 1956
Brooks Stover - June 2007
FRESH EGGS, FAT HENS and GARDEN PRODUCE FOR SALE
This photo is from Warden's book. It is very similar to the photo above, although it shows more of the dairy.
This sign hung under the porch roof. It's just visible (arrow) in the photo to the right. It's a wonderful prototypically correct detail on a model...a great conversation piece.
Larry Fellure photo - October 1963
Jack Wheelihan - September 1963
The dairy closed in 1958 when it was sold in the package to Clinchfield so it would have been idle when this photo was taken. The motorcar was typical of those used by track gangs for daily track inspection.
The milk produced at the dairy was distributed to Dundon, Swandale, Widen and other destinations along the line in Motor 'A'. In this classic photo, there's smoke from the stack of the dairy so milk preparation must be underway. The silo is just visible above the dairy. The siding is in the foreground.
C.W. Jerstrom collection - September 1958
Photographer and date unknown
David Marquis - circa 1957
These two color photos, looking east from about the same position, show some of the changes that took place. Notice that the siding was removed at some point and the shed is gone. The shed, by the way, would be a great "one evening project" on a layout. Notice that there are just two painted boards on the visible side. The foundation of the dairy is on the left in the autumn photo. The road paralleling the track leads to Swandale. It is unpaved yet today.
Brooks Stover - June 2007
There were several houses up on the hillside behind the dairy. This one is still very much in its original configuration and is in excellent condition. It's red with white trim the way it's been since it was built, I suspect. Today the windows appear to be aluminum, but it's not hard to imagine this photo was taken in 1940.
Much of what little farming was done in Clay County took place in the open areas around Cressmont. This photo appears on page 48 of the Warden BC&G book.
CRESSENT LUMBER CO.
The Cressent Lumber Company at one time operated a sawmill in Cressmont.
J.W. Lozier photograph, 1961
Howard Ameling photo - Circa 1960
This is the only photo I'm aware of that shows cars being set out on the siding at Cressmont. Apparently this siding was used to store excess hoppers, sometimes loaded ones awaiting customers.
This is a composite reproduction of an early photo of Cressmont measuring 10" X 65" provided by Judy Gregorich Hart. While not dated, is clearly a very early picture. The dairy building along the tracks (see photo below) has not yet been built, but a beautiful barn and silo are clearly evident. Click on each segment to enlarge it. The house on the left with the beautiful Martin bird house may be in the same location as the one in the last photo on this page.
This is the only still color photo I have seen of the Cressmont dairy and silo. A barn or out building is visible between the silo and the dairy. The photo was taken in November of 1962, just over a year before the mine closed.
Of particular note in this photo is the immaculate condition of the locomotive. There is no record of a fan trip in the fall of 1962 so the crews must have just been taking exceptional care of the motive power at this time!
November 1962- Photographer unknown
DAIRY STAFF - Cody Burdette recalls that Clell Belt was the dairy foreman for many, many years. He lived in the only house at Cressmont and that house is still there today (see Stover photo below). Sterling Boggs took over as foreman when Mr. Belt retired. Tobe Asbury was blind but he and his wife Cloe took care of the milk. Cody recalls the glass bottles used by the dairy had the words CRESSMONT DAIRY in raised red letters on them. They used paper lids. We'd love to post a photo of one of these bottles if anyone has one in their collection! In the meantime, click here for a photo of Charles Stidom holding one of the Cressmont bottles.
This photo was found on the internet. It is the only one that has surfaced that shows the turnout at the east end of the Cressmont siding. The photo was obviously taken during a fantrip. It's not clear how the photographer got this shot...perhaps he climbed aboard a hopper stored on the siding..
In the summer of 1948, James Greene rode Motor "B" from Dundon to Widen with stops in Swandale, and as seen here, Cressmont. According to James, the driver of the bus had a lengthy conversation with Cloe Asubury, the young lady on the porch, while passengers waited patiently.
Two photos by James Greene July 1948.
Bryan Small provided this image from the collection his father, Skip. It shows there was a red telephone box trackside near the dairy. It also provides a good view of the barn and silo as well as the slope-roofed shed across from the dairy.