Built by Baldwin
The Story of E. M. Baldwin & Sons, Castle Hill, NSW
By Craig Wilson
ISBN 0 909340 42 0
This is the history of E. M. Baldwin & Sons, the most innovative and successful builder of diesel industrial railway equipment in Australia, best known for their introduction to the Australian sugar industry of the bogie canefield locomotive.
This book is not only the story of the development of Baldwin canefield locomotives. It also describes underground, shunting, and fairground locomotives, brake wagons, and the diverse range of engineering work undertaken by the Company, from stainless steel vessels to broad-acre agricultural tractors.
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. 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 of the Company, and gives much detail on the performance of individual locomotives.
Hard cover, 160 pages, A4 size, 148 photographs, and 16 diagrams, references, bibliography, and index.