As we’ve been digging into old boxes and archives for forgotten pictures of Metrolinx’s transit past – all part of a continuing series we’ve dubbed HistoricGO – one small button, souvenir ticket, grainy photo and a few advertising clippings caught our eye. It all revolved around the first official GO train on the Milton line.
It started with GO Transit engine ‘910’ making mincemeat out of a large ribbon.
Digging into old collections of photos and memorabilia from GO’s past, we’ve come across an image of the big train breaking the inaugural ribbon on the Milton line, back on October 25, 1981.
The launch of GO stops along the route – there were three weekday morning trains, as well as a trio of return trips from Union Station – came on rail lines that CP had used for passenger service until 1971.
From inside one old box, we’ve pulled out a modest treasure trove of keepsakes from that first day. The random keepsakes – scattered among other photos and items spanning decades – include a souvenir inauguration button and train ticket.
As well, there are advertisements, printed on now yellow newsprint from local papers. A small reminder of the times, GO Transit phone numbers listed on the ads contained no area code.
What train 910 started continues to grow. Today, Milton line is the third busiest rail route operated by GO Transit, and the number of trips is projected to increase over the next five years.
And Milton GO station itself – like many stops along all the lines – is undergoing significant improvements and upgrades.
It started with small souvenir buttons and one big train making short work of a ribbon.