The Cy Crumley Scrapbook
ET&WNC Railroad

Tour 16: Requiem for the ET&WNC Crew

Your host and narrator for this tour is Ken Riddle, close personal friend of Cy Crumley, legendary conductor of this great railroad. From 1906 until 1960, Cy worked on the ET&WNC as Brakeman and Conductor. This is his scrapbook of those years and his story.

Click on each photo to see a larger view.

Ticket Box
Tweetsie Railroad Museum
From Cranberry,
North Carolina Depot
Cy Crumley 1886 - 1978
Ruth Tupper 1914 - 2002
Riddle & Simerly - 1993
Tighteye Simerly 1898 - 1993

Happy Valley Cemetery
Elizabethton, TN
Ruth with Cy's Cap - 2002

Happy Valley Memorial Park and Gardens lies just above the now abandoned ET&WNC Railway line and includes the final resting places of numerous Tweetsie employees including Cy Crumley and Tighteye Simerly. Link to Cy Crumley's Obituary.


Abandoned ET&WNC Railway
Below Happy Valley Cemetery



Roan Mountain
Sherman Pippin

Legendary Engineer Sherman Pippin lived and died in Roan Mountain, Tennessee. Looks like he lived to be 93.  I was over there with Fred Honeycutt, and he was a lifelong friend of Sherman.  He allowed that Sherman would be glad we were making his picture!


George W. Hardin
1864 - 1922
Jordan Hardin
1830 - 1898
George W. Hardin
Mary Hardin McCown
1891 - 1985

Oak Hill
Johnson City, TN
Mary Hardin McCown
Oak Hill Cemetery is the final resting place of the Hardin family members and many other founders of the City of Johnson City.



Mountain Home National Cemetery
Johnson City, TN
Andy Kern

"Steam Locomotive Genius" Andy Kern was a veteran of World War I and is buried in the Mountain Home National Cemetery in Johnson City. Andy lived to be 86.


Brownie Allison
Clarence Hobbs
1893 - 1967
Brownie Allison
1898 - 1979
Chester Ford
1887 - 1978
Rabbitfoot Watson
1867 - 1946
Walter Allison
1887 - 1976

Monte Vista
Johnson City, TN
If you have photos of the grave sites of other ET&WNC persons featured in the photo galleries please submit a copy to
February 12, 2006

I have the sad duty to report to you that Mrs. Allison died this morning at 2 a.m. in Johnson City.  She would have been 99 if she had made it until July.

Her name was Bertha Mae Riddle and she married Brownie Allison in 1930.  Everybody called her "Bert", except Brownie, who called her "Wife" and occasionally "Waterloo".  She was the operator and clerk at the Elk Park depot during World War II.

Her Daddy was John Albert Riddle, a locomotive engineer for W. M Ritter who boomered around from one Ritter lumber job to another.  He was from Yancey county, North Carolina but worked jobs in Virginia and West Virginia before being killed on a job near Pineola when Mrs. Allison was a little girl.  Mrs Allison was actually born in Fairwood, Virginia in a Ritter camp.

She educated herself and was a teacher for a time in both Pineola and at Cranberry High School.  She put in a course to become a nurse and also did that for several years.  She knew as much or more about old mountain remedies than anybody I ever saw and we are fortunate that she did write them down and they are in her and Brownie's collection at the Archives of Appalachia at ETSU.

She was in great shape until about two months ago, when a stroke landed her in the bed for the last time and she was not too happy about it.  She was a strong, hard-headed old girl and had mowed the two acre yard at their home on the old Jonesborough Highway until she was well past ninety, plus tended a big garden.

I reckon she is the end of the old-time narrow gauge line, and I sure will miss her, her tales, and especially her peach and apple pies.  She made the best pies you ever tasted.

Ken Riddle

Mrs. Bertha Mae Allison
September 23 , 2006

Elbert McCoury - CRANBERRY, N.C.

CRANBERRY, N.C. — Elbert Wayne McCoury, of Cranberry, NC, went home to be with his Lord on Wednesday, September 20, 2006, in the Johnson City Medical Center.

He was born March 20, 1920, the youngest son of Jonah and Della Sluder McCoury.

He is survived by his wife of fifty-seven years, Johnnie B. Nicely McCoury, of the home; a son, Kent McCoury and wife, Eleanor, of Apex, NC; and sons, Dale C. and David P. McCoury, of the home; two grandchildren, Wendy Grace and Jeb McCoury, of Apex. He is also survived by two sisters, Ms. Bertha M. Calhoun, of Gate City, VA, and Ms. Viola M. Calhoun, of Hudson, FL.

He was preceded in death by two brothers, William and Gurney McCoury; and two sisters, Ms. Etta Lewis and Fannie Thomas.

Mr. McCoury was a member of the First Baptist Church of Elk Park, where he served as Adult Men’s Sunday School Teacher, leader in VBS and Chairman of Deacons. He was a member of the Cranberry Baptist Church from 1955-1981, where he served as Sunday School Teacher, leader of VBS and Chairman of Deacons. Also in his younger years, he was a member of the Ivey Heights Freewill Baptist Church and served as church clerk, treasurer and trustee.

He was a veteran of World War II, serving in the 102 “Ozark” Infantry Division in the European Theater and in the army of occupation. He was honorably discharged in 1946.

Elbert had a strong interest in model railroading, especially “Tweetsie” with which he grew up along her line. He was a member of the E.T.&W.N.C. Historical Society and a member of Gideons International.

"Elbert loved the ET&WNC which came through his back yard in Cranberry. His model of #12 was displayed at the funeral home. I would visit him whenever I was in Cranberry and he would love to drive around and show me the Mackie house, the mine, Cranberry Hotel site, and just sit and talk about the railroad. I will miss him."

Mike Hardin

Mike Hardin and Elbert McCoury co-authored the article "The Light Inspection Car" that details the work of Elbert's father, Jonah, on the Linville River Railway.


Elbert McCoury
1920 - 2006




Tribute to Cecil Bowden
1926 - 2006
"Don't Make me Cuss!"



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Feel free to copy and use these photos.


Kenneth Riddle
Johnson City, Tennessee
November 2005