An inside look at the Essex Steam Train

ESSEX, Conn. (WTNH) — “I get paid to do something that I love,” said Paul Lewis, road foreman of engines for Essex Steam Train.

Since the first day of the Steam Train operation on July 26, 1971, Lewis has been a part of the Steam Train team.

“I had a firing job. I was pleased and proud to have that assignment,” said Lewis. “Firing is taking coal from point A, the Tinder, and putting it to point B, the fire box, and doing it often enough so you don’t run out of steam.”

Lewis describes the Steam Train as “a step back in time” and “living history.” When not teaching people how to run engines, Lewis, a former teacher, takes the time to educate the people on the train.

“I was a teacher and I continue to be a teacher. And when I’m not on the engine teaching people how to run engines, I’m on the coach train, or dinner train, telling people about railroads and answering lots of railroad type questions,” Lewis said.

Lewis added that he’s not planning on taking a break from his job any time soon.

“As some people say, you’ll be here until we carry you out. That’s probably, probably quite true because I do love what I do,” he said.

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