The Bangor & Quebec was chartered in 1874 (by the Le Coeur & Terrance Railroad to connect to the timberlands in the interior of Maine and to a warm water port at Bangor. The railroad was finished in 1877, and soon thereafter was merged into the new Le Coeur, Terrance & Lynville Railway.

The port at Bangor was congested, so the LT&L extended the line south to Augusta in 1884. That branch saw a lot of local traffic and functioned as a feeder railroad to the PV&T and Maine Central in Augusta and to the Bangor and Aroostook in Bangor, but the line across Maine never developed any sort of bridge traffic and subsisted on a diet of lumber products from logging operations along the line.

For the first fifty years or so, this was a very rich diet indeed; there was (and still is) a lot of logging going on in Maine and the few railroads that operated through the center of the state pretty much had lumber thrown at them as fast as they could ship it. But in the late 1930s, traffic started to fall off as many of the loggers began to use trucks instead of the rails. The second world war provided a respite, but after that the traffic became very light indeed.

The LT&L made enough money on the mainline across the state to keep operating it as a connection between their system in Quebec and the healthy branch between Augusta and Bangor, but when it merged with the PV&T in 1961, the new owners abandoned the mainline as soon as they could get overhead wire up on the Augusta branch.

After abandonment, the line was removed from Lynville to the Canadian border, but the rest of the line remains intact and local interests are negotiating to lease or purchase it.

The corporate carcass of the Bangor & Quebec Railroad has been resuscitated and holds title on the mainline. Every now and then they borrow the RS-1 that the PV&T keeps in Bangor for wreck train service and runs a MofW train up the line to keep it in salable shape.

B&Q history

Bangor & Quebec Railway (Quebec) chartered to build Lynville to Canadian border.
Bangor & Quebec Railroad (Maine) chartered to build lines in the United States.
built Lynville, PQ to Bangor, ME.
  1. B&Q Railway, LC&T & CdfQ&TR merge to form the LT&L.
  2. B&Q Railroad lines in Maine leased to the LT&L for 999 years.
Augusta branch built; Bangor to Augusta.
LT&L merged with MTRR, PV&T.
Augusta branch electrified at 3000VDC.
PV&T abandons Lynville to Bangor, then reactivates the corporate shell of the B&Q to control the ROW until the line can be leased, sold, or lifted.

The B&Q never owned any locomotives, but leased locomotives from the LT&L and CdFQ&TR to operate the yards in Lynville, Bangor, and Augusta. Several of those locomotives were repainted for the B&Q, and are listed here.

All-time B&Q Roster (1874-1878)

No. Type Builder Built Owner (No.) Notes
1 4-4-0 Portland 1870 LC&T #1010 For inspection train during construction. Returned to LC&T 1876.
2 0-4-0 Mason 1872 LC&T #1034 Bangor switcher
Ant 0-4-0 Portland 1874 CdFQ&TR #13 Bangor switcher