William(Bill) Hewlett

William Henry “Bill” HEWLETT, MMR #18 July 9, 1914 - February 27, 1968
Bill Hewlett was an avid model railroader and a huge fan of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, scratchbuilding models of many of the PGE’s freight and passenger cars and numerous structures. The 7th Division, Pacific Northwest Region, National Model Railroad Association (Canada) currently holds a collection of approximately 300 of his slides of PGE subjects as well as an album of PGE-related black & white prints that he collected from various sources. He served as PNR president from September 1955 - September 1957 and was a member of the committee that organized the Totemland NMRA National Convention in Vancouver, August 26 - 29, 1965. His home layout in Nanaimo was the Cariboo Central Railway, featuring many structures and much equipment of the PGE but also running locomotives and cars painted and lettered for the Vanisle Pacific and the Pacific Norwest Railroad, and featured impressive trackwork - as did the layouts of other model railroaders with whom he shared his expertise.
The “last run” of the Cariboo Central occurred in 1963 as a result of Bill moving to Mission, BC. He fully intended to build a new layout with emphasis on scale models of some PGE trackage arrangements but got sidetracked by a move to Whitehorse, Yukon mandated by his employer, Her Majesty’s Postal Service. During his time in Whitehorse, he built some incredible bridge models based on Pacific Great Eastern prototypes that won awards at the 1964 PNR Convention in Portland, Oregon. Returning to the Nanaimo area in 1966 as Postmaster, he completed the last certificates required to qualify for the Master Model Railroader designation. Following his death, his widow donated much of his equipment and structures to the Pacific Great Eastern Railway and they were displayed in the window of the Pender Street office for many years.
Bill earned the following certificates within the Achievement Program:
  • Master Builder - Cars July 1963
  • Model RR Engineer - Civil March 1964
  • Master builder-Structures September 1964
  • Association Official September 1964
  • Chief Dispatcher March 1966
  • Master Builder - Motive Power June 1966
  • Model RR Engineer - Electrical October 1966
    As Master Model Railroader #18, Bill was not only the first MMR in the 7th Division, PNR, NMRA but also the first in the Pacific Northwest Region.