EDWARD H. BRAYTON, Avon, New York.
On November 25, 1860, Edward H. Brayton was born in Avon, New York, being the son of Daniel C. Brayton, a prominent farmer of Livingston County. He received a high school education, and in the fall of 1879 began his railroad career as a brakeman on the Rochester Division of the Erie, serving in this capacity for a year and a half. In 1880 he was advanced to fireman, and for the next eight years ran between Rochester, Corning and Elmira, serving five years on freight and three years on passenger. On July 5, 1888, he was promoted to engineer and has since run on the Rochester Division, for the past four years running fast freight between Avon and Attica.
In September, 1893, Mr. Brayton was united in marriage to Miss Harriet M. Watkins, daughter of Myron Watkins, a coal and lumber dealer of Avon. Mrs. Brayton is a member of the G. A. R. Relief Corps, and Mr. Brayton belongs to Division No. 15, B. of L. E., and the I. 0. 0. F. of Avon. They reside in their own pretty home on Center Street and are prominent in the social affairs of Avon. Mr. Brayton, aside from being one of the Erie's tried and trusted engineers, is a sportsman of some note, and in the hunting seasons takes a vacation to indulge in his favorite sport.
Excerpted from: "American Locomotive Engineers, Erie Railway Edition," H.R. Romans Editor; Crawford-Adsit Company Publishers, Chicago, IL 1899.
From the February, 1911 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine (Rochester Division News):
Passenger engine 403, on the Rochester Division, whose regular run is between Avon and Buffalo, with engineer E.H. Brayton at the throttle, is the first engine to be the proud possessor of a "red star."
Note: Red stars were assigned to engines whose crews took particularly good care of them, reducing the need for frequent repairs.
From the February, 1912 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine (Rochester Division News):
Engineer E.H. Brayton is more proud than ever of his "red spot" engine 403, which has been returned from Hornell shop after a general overhauling, and is again back in the service with a new pair of cylinders.
From the July, 1916 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine:
Engine 478 holds the record for being the best engine on the Rochester Division. It is used on passenger trains 464 and 471 between Avon and Corning. The cost of maintenance per ton mile is less than any other engine on the division. It has always been a light coal burner. At present, while in heavy passenger service, it burns an average of only 2.8 tons per 100 miles. Engine 478 has been on this division for four years and has had a "Red Spot" for three years.
Engineer Brayton entered the service of this company in 1881 as fireman, and was promoted to engineer in 1888. He has always made excellent records during his thirty-five years of service. He gives much credit to his fireman, C. L. Smith, for having such a clean engine and being able to make such good records.
From the January, 1921 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine:
E.H. Brayton, while acting as motorman on train 440, discovered a broken rail 500 feet west of Brooks. He notified motorman on train 415, and reported condition at West Henrietta, which no doubt prevented an accident.
From the July, 1934 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine:
E.H. Brayton, engineer, was guest of honor at a dinner May 27 given by the local division of the B of LE in recognition of Mr. Brayton's membership of 40 years.
From the October, 1934 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine:
E.H. Brayton, Rochester Division Engineer of Avon, NY, was placed on the special allowance payroll and retired recently at age 73 after 53 years, 7 months service.
From the December, 1934 issue of Erie Railroad Magazine:
Edward H. Brayton, 75, senior engineer on the Erie's Rochester Division, who has been retired on special allowance after service of 53 years and seven months. He began as brakeman on the old NYLE&W at Avon and was promoted to engineer in 1888. He has never had a mishap. A busy man in the affairs of Avon, where he lives on Clinton Street, Mr. Brayton is a Mason, charter member of the Avon Hose Co., of which he was chief, and has served on the village board of trustees. Division 35 of the B of LE of Rochester gave him a 40 year membership badge last summer.