TWO years ago the Boston Herald asked a number of railroad men to tell the secret of success in railroading. The laconic reply of Lucius Tuttle, president of the Boston and Maine, was "Work."
However true that explanation may be for the majority of men, it certainly applies to Mr. Tuttle. At twenty years of age he was a ticket-seller in the office of the Hartford, Providence and Fishkill Railroad, in Hartford, Connecticut. He was without influence or acquaintance, his father being a farmer near Hartford, but within a year the boy was made general ticket-agent of the road.
That was in 1867. In 1878 Mr. Tuttle was called in by the president of the Eastern Railroad to take the general passenger agency and pull the road out of the slough in which it had been thrust by a terrible disaster in which many passengers had lost their lives. In the five years that he was at the bead of the passenger department the Eastern recovered its prestige, resumed dividends that were unthought of in 1878.
His next step was to the head of the general passenger department of the Boston and Lowell, where he stayed two years. Then he became general passenger traffic manager of the Canadian Pacific, with headquarters at Montreal.
Here his most conspicuous service was in laying the foundation for the Canadian Pacific's splendid system of long distance passenger traffic, inducing travel and urging on the settling up of the Canadian Northwest with booklets, folders, and illustrated advertising matter, now such a prominent part of that -road's activity.
The opening of the year 1889 found him commissioner of passenger traffic of the newly organized Trunk Line Commission, where he remained a year. His next berth was the general managership of the New York, New Haven and Hartford, with headquarters at New Haven.
In the twenty-five years of his railroad service he had completed a circle geographically, and worked his way out of the passenger department. Henceforth he was to be counted as one of those on the staff of the commander-in-chief. Two years later he was made vice-president of the New Haven.
But while he had been swinging around the circle through New England into Canada and back a great railroad system had been growing out of the separate lines which Mr. Tuttle had served in his earlier years. The Boston and Maine, built out of the struggling lines which fought for their lives in Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine, had come to be the recognized railroad power in those States, and when it was left without a head by the death of Jones and Furber Mr. Tuttle was unanimously elected president in 1893.
The crowning achievement of Mr. Tuttle's career was the purchase of the great Hoosac Tunnel in 1900 as a part of the lease of the Fitchburg Railroad.
His loyalty to the calling in which he has won renown can be judged from his declaration that "No other agency has accomplished so much for humanity's amelioration as the railroad." Not only does he love his work; he knows it from top to bottom.
As a friend said of him, "He can dissect a locomotive; he understands thoroughly the electro-pneumatic signal; he is well versed in all railroad laws and decisions."