MARCELO SALADA
VILLA CLARA REGION
This mill (formerly Reforma) remembers Marcelo Salado Lastra, another young Cuban revolutionary
killed during the Batista dictatorship.  Like many other young men he opposed the coup of General
Baptista and vowed to overthrow the dictator.  He joined the 26 July Movement, moved to Havana and
linked up with other insurgents in the capital.  He was involved in the kidnapping of Juan Manuel Fangio
on the eve of the 1958 grand prix held in Cuba, an action which was a public relations disaster for the
ruling regime.   By all accounts Fangio was sympathetic to the cause of his captors and was well treated
throughout his short period of capativity, being turned over to the Argentinian Embassy the day after
the race.  Marcelo Salado then became one of the leaders of the Revolutionary Strike of April 9, 1958 in
Havana.  Frustrated by problems on strike day he emerged from hiding and was identified on the
streets by a police informer.   He was killed in the ensuing gunfight and his body thrown into the boot of
a police car before being returned to his relatives the following day.
Marcelo Salado, located on the outskirts of Remedios, was always a favourite mill with enthusiasts - particularly those with
cine or video cameras.   To get from the mill to the loading points meant utilising the tracks of the FCC (see mill map) and it
was possible to drive alongside moving trains as they paralleled the main road - or race ahead to grab another still.   The mill
was also home to a collection of small tank locomotives that seemed to be rarely used and which quietly rusted to the rails in
the shed.   
A recent hurricane had removed
the roof of Marcelo Salado shed by
the start of the 1996 Zafra making
it easy to photograph Davenport
0-4-0ST No.1147 (built 1919)
Further back in the shed was this
delightful ALCO 0-6-0ST No.1148
dating from 1925
Awaiting what appeared to be a  
considerable amount of work was
what appears to be a 2-6-0 loco     
- possibly Baldwin No.1429 of 1916
which the IRS listed as being
present at the mill at this time
Shunting in the patio at the mill
was this delightful Baldwin 2-6-2ST
No.1343 - an engine which the
crew were more than happy to
allow us to drive up and down the
yard  (March 1996)
Map of the Marcelo Salado system showing the way in which the mill utilised the FCC  (by permission of David Thornhill)
The 1997 Zafra started with a
period of very unsettled weather
and the deep blue skies of the
previous year took time to
reappear.  However in the
intervening twelve months Baldwin
2-8-0 No.1426 had been
transferred from Jose Maria Perez
(Mill No.411) and was working the
cane trains between the loading
points and the mill
By 1998 the roof was once more
back on the shed although No.1147
was still in exactly the same
position as two years previously.  
The mill line work in 1998 was
shared between No.1426 and
ALCO 2-8-0 No.1549 (built 1920)
seen on the left of the picture
Baldwin 2-8-0 No.1426 working
tender first along the FCC heading
away from the mill.  The yellow
caboose was presumably required
for mill trains working on the main
line   (March 1998)
This is one of my favourite pictures from my three visits to Cuba - No.1426 heads a loaded train back towards the mill and is
about to run parallel with the main road.  The crew are obvious;ly enjoying the spectacle of the lineside photographers who are
about to make a mad scramble back to the car to get a second shot of this train as it gets closer to the mill
It was almost obligatory to get a
shot of a train and the Remedios
sign and with clear skies and a
heavily loaded train this was one
such occasion when it all came
together beautifully
The train crossed over a small river bridge (left) just before reaching the mill and then came to a stop before reversing up the short
branch to collect more loaded wagons from the Guajabana loading point.  Having done so it returned up the main line and into the
mill yard (right)
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