These have to be some of the rarest photos in my collection to date. What you're seeing is the final year or so (1928) of the Black Mountain & Eastern/Combs Cass & Eastern line that I've researched off/on since '76. These are the ONLY pics of the rails of the BM&E/CC&E in Cass that are known to exist.
Maybe not a big deal to you... but to me this is a REEEEALLY big deal.
First, a brief description of what you're seeing:
A scene illustrating the rails near the (one of more?) Phipps Lumber sawmill. Note the "different" power being used? Yup, in the last year or so, the BM&E/CC&E used these rail trucks to cart the lumber up the worst of the grades to be trans-loaded onto rail cars once up on top of Black Mountain.
Can you DIG that bridge over the creek RIGHT NEXT to an old surviving false front store??? Also did you noticed the cribbing over the creek. (Fane Creek, I think.)
Another view of the Phipps Lumber sawmill. This may have been only one of the sawmills in the area. Not for sure.
These rare pictures answer a few questions, but also raises some more questions. For example:
Obviously, the rails DID reach the flat valley at (lower) Cass... but HOW did they get there? The switchbacks? The extension that MAY have been built?
There was at least one business nearby (i.e. the false front store)... but how much more of the business section of (lower) Cass was in such close proximity to the sawmill?
Either way... this is really some interesting stuff for this TOC19 idiot.
Any observations or comments as to what you "see" in these pics would definitely be appreciated!