The town of Clearwater, Manitoba features a grain elevator and a well-preserved railway water tower. The Clearwater grain elevator is an ex Manitoba Pool elevator.
Back when railways ran steam engines, they built water towers at regular intervals along the line to top up the water in the locomotives. When diesels took over from steam engines in the 1950s, the water towers were no longer needed and most were torn down.
In some cases, the water towers were supplying water to the town as well as to the railway. This was the case in Clearwater, and in fact the tower still supplies water to the town. This particular tower was built in 1910 to the Canadian Pacific Railway “Standard No. 1 Plan” and can contain almost 182,000L (40,000 gallons) of water. The ball on top of the tower indicates how full the tank is.
The town used to be on the CP Napinka subdivision.
There is a lovely photo by Andrew Sutherland of Clearwater’s water tank as well as its Pool and Federal grain elevators in Greg McDonnell’s book Wheat Kings: Vanishing Landmarks of the Canadian Prairies.