It is true, as claimed by an eBay dealer that: CPRR iron "spikes were laid in the 19th century, most were quietly pulled out and recycled for the war effort in 1916-1917. (They were replaced with screws, which required less metal. The heads of the screws were then hammered over to prevent theft. Spike hunters were required to turn in their collections and were melted down. Possession laws remained on the books until 1925.)"? None of this sounds right.
From: "chris graves" email@example.com
Whoa! The original spikes were wrought iron, and were pulled up when steel was laid. Remember too that ties didn't last long.........In all my wanderings, I have never seen a screw spike. Never.
SP tried out screw spikes but I don't remember the time period. It was a good try but way too expensive to install. They were never used during my tenure and I don't remember any being inventoried by the ICC parties for the 1913 valuation. I think on SP they would have been tried at the end of the 19th century.
Cheers - Lynn Farrar