A trompe l'oeil commemoration work in progress for Southampton
by Sandy Lindsay

February 5, 2016


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A work in progress by Bert DeGraef

It's a 'trompe l'oeil' train that will soon appear emerging from what was once the Knechtel Furniture Factory (now the Southampton Market) in Southampton.

The work is currently being created by mural artist, Lambertus (Bert) DeGraef, and depicts an authentic 3D train departing from the old furniture factory in Southampton (now the Southampton Market) and will be mounted on the Southampton Market's west wall overlooking Hwy. 21.

The train mural is in recognition of the train wreck that occurred in Southampton in 1954 when Hurricane Hazel struck with heavy rains.  The train left Palmerston on the night of  October 16th on its run to Southampton. It was there, in Southampton, that the track over a flooded culvert gave way derailing the train and killing two of its crew, Engineer Gordon MacCallum and Fireman, Stewart Nicholson.

The work will also honour Allen Hilgendorf, renowned Ontario mural artist who has created many murals throughout rural Ontario and who will be depicted in the mural as a conductor along with his wife Karen.

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The Grosvenor train station in Southampton as depicted by artist Ken Thornburn of Northern Flyer Designs

Today, there is a memorial resting spot at the site of the derailment on the Rail Trail in Southampton. Click Here to read the history and opening of the memorial site.

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Friday, February 05, 2016