Saturday, May 31, 2008

Berths on CPRR

From: "Malcolm Easton"

I am trying to understand about the sleeping arrangements around 1885. The Helen Hunt Jackson narrative of 1878 implies that on CPRR if you didn't have a berth in a silver palace car then you had no berth but sat on a bench all night. Other narratives, perhaps dealing with other types of trains, describe a lesser class of sleeping arrangements in which the seats are converted to berths, and other berths swing down from the ceiling. Can someone clarify this?

—Malcolm Easton

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Cost to travel on transcontinental railroad

Niles-Tracy line

From: "Randy Ruiz"

Thank you for maintaining this fine discussion group.  I have had some luck answering questions here in the past, and I thought I would try another.  

I am looking to collect traffic data for the CP/SP line from Niles to Tracy.  I am not sure where the railroad collected this data, and what sort of records to look for.  John Signor's gives a few freight traffic numbers for this line in his Western Division book to make the case that traffic fluctuated in relation to the depression and the completion of the Suisun Bay Bridge.  I had asked him for help with this question, but he was unable to do so.  I also asked this question at the CSRM library, but they did not know where to look.

I have found systemwide data in the company's annual reports.  I am hoping to compare this data to the statistics for the line through Niles Canyon and over Altamont. I would like to determine when traffic peaked during WWII, and how quickly it fell off afterwards.  Also, did it continue to decline through to 1984, or were there periods of growth, such as during the Korean conflict. 

I took some of the systemwide data I have come across and put it into the attached charts.  They reveal some interesting trends particularly in terms of the railroad's growth and stagnation.  It would be interesting to compare against the national GDP. Please see the attached PDF, SPRR 1885-1934.


Randolph R. Ruiz

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Railroadiana: The Collectors Weekly

From: S. Bramson

... Dave Margulius, has started an excellent listing of railroadiana that you can browse on a daily basis ... at no charge. The info is below and you might, if you collect railroad and traction memorabilia, want to 'check it out!'

For a quick and fun way to browse the top railroadiana currently on eBay, check out The Collectors Weekly's new railroadiana browser gallery.

The gallery includes about 1,200 current railroadiana auctions (only those with bids), is updated every two hours, and can be sorted by item type (passes, lanterns, slides, signs, china, badges etc.) and other keywords. While not a replacement for eBay searches, this is a fun, fast way to see the "best of" the current auctions, and some items you might otherwise have missed. ...

[from the R&LHS Newsgroup.]

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Railroad memorabilia

Do you have any Trains items to send out from you museum I love my Trains They makes Happy Please can you let me know.

Thank you


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

San Pablo and Tulare Railroad, 1868

From: "Carol Jensen"

Can you refer me to a route map of the Tulare and San Pablo railroad system developed by the Western Development Company, please.  It went through Byron, CA  in 1878, I believe going from Tulare via Banta , Byron, Brentwood, Antioch, and on to San Pablo via Port Costa  It was merged into the Central Pacific and later into the Southern Pacific.  I am looking for a little history on the Railroad and specifically am looking for the name ( first and last preferably) of the original or first Station master for the Byron Depot, Byron, Contra Costa County.  I do not believe the Byron Hot Springs had an official  station master, although it was an official Depot with regular stops.  This railroad was key to moving  wheat and grain from the upper San Joaquin Valley to the British grain ships awaiting cargo at the Califonria Wharf and Warehouse facility, owned by Balfour Guthrie & Co, at Port Costa

Local legend has it that the Byron depot was named after the son of the first Byron Depot master.  I do not believe it. Still. ...

—Carol Jensen, Historian, Byron Hot Springs

Thursday, May 15, 2008

United States Pacific Railway Commission, 1887 Report, Volume V, CPRR.

United States Pacific Railway Commission, 1887 Report, Volume V, CPRR.

Text of Volume 5 of the United States Pacific Railway Commission, 1887 Report (regarding the Central Pacific Railroad). Courtesy of the University of California, Microsoft Corporation, and the Internet Archive. [Optical Character Recognition not corrected. Tables omitted.]

Open Content Alliance - Internet Archive Books Online

Open Content Alliance – Internet Archive books online on the subjects of the
Pacific Railroads,
Central Pacific Railroad, and
Union Pacific Railroad.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

SP Painting of Steel Water Tanks, 1909


Thought you might find the attached interesting. A paragraph [from] a book available through Google Books online, The corrosion and preservation of iron and steel by Allerton Seward Cushman, Henry Alfred Gardner, 1910, McGraw-Hill Book Company.


Saturday, May 10, 2008

National Train Day

A very happy National Train Day! - May 10th

National Train Day, 2008

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Rocklin’s Roundhouse, 1867 to 1908

"Did You Know? Rocklin’s Roundhouse: 1867 to 1908" by Gary Day, © The Placer Herald, 5/8/08. (News Article)

"Rocklin's roundhouse included 25 engine stalls, a turntable and an 8,000-square-foot woodshed. It was demolished in 1912 after the operation relocated to Roseville. ... Judah’s plan in 1863 was to build a roundhouse at Junction, now Roseville, to service the extra engines that would be needed to help trains surmount the Sierra. But Judah died that year and new CP managers decided to build the roundhouse at Rocklin instead, closer to the point where the rail bed steepens as it heads toward Auburn. ... In 1869 the woodshed burned and was quickly rebuilt. In 1873 the roundhouse burned again as its roof was being tarred. The fire destroyed ten engines and damaged several coaches but the facility continued to function without interruption. ... By April 1908 the railroad had moved all roundhouse operations to Roseville and the Rocklin facility closed permanently. ... Rocklin’s roundhouse employed 300 people. The monthly payroll was $25-30,000. ... Rocklin’s population declined by 80 percent as roundhouse workers abandoned their homes or moved them to Roseville on flatcars." [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Need old redwood

From: "Judy Ashby"

In Carbondale, Illinois, we are working to restore the one geodesic dome in which R. Buckminster Fuller and his wife actually lived. One componenet of this restoration project is repair of the redwood fence; Bucky's unique design to maintain privacy while allowing air flow. In order to retain national historical monumnent status, we must use aged redwood like the original as much as possible.

Some early railroad water towers were made of redwood. In fact, we were able to obtain some wood from just such a tower, but we need more. Does anyone know of an existing redwood water tower, upright or fallen, that we could access for wood to continue restoration of Bucky's fence?

Thank you for any help.

Bucky Board Member

Judy Ashby, MS, LCPC
Executive Director
LifeSavers Training Corp.
LifeSavers = a peer-support, suicide and crisis-prevention program for high schools.

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace." Jimi Hendrix

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

UP Museum celebrates fifth anniversary

"UP Museum celebrates fifth anniversary" by Chad Nation, © The Daily Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, 05/07/2008. (News Article)

"... On Saturday, officials will once again drive ceremonial spikes – to commemorate the five-year anniversary of the Union Pacific Railroad Museum. The free museum, located at 200 S. Pearl, will celebrate its anniversary starting at 9:30 a.m. ... since the museum's opening, more than 100,000 people ... have passed through the doors ... Saturday's celebration is to honor all of the people who decided to preserve the Council Bluffs Carnegie Library ... " [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

C.P. Huntington Anecdote

Bill Bonner writes in The Daily Reckoning on May 7, 2008, the following anecdote about C.P. Huntington:
"One day in 1880, a dealer proposed to Collis P. Huntington, one of the founders of the Central Pacific Railroad … and the state of California, a certain number of old paintings, unsigned, at $2000 each. Huntington chose one, The guitar player, and paid $750 for it. Later, experts attributed the painting to Vermeer.

'I saw the money in it,' said Huntington."

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Two Millionth Visitor to the CPRR Museum

Just moments ago, the Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum website received its two millionth visitor!

We expected that the website in memory of great-great-grandfather Lewis Metzler Clement illustrated by period photographs would be a fairly obscure topic, but have been amazed and delighted that our on-line museum has become such a popular source of information about the first transcontinental railroad.

It has been most gratifying to have so many people contribute to this success. Thanks for all your help and generous contributions over the past nine years!
May 6, 2008

Monday, May 05, 2008

Vallejo Rail service reaches end of line

"Rail service reaches end of line: For nearly 140 years, trains helped Vallejo grow, prosper" by Sarah Rohrs, © Vellejo-Benecia-American Canyon, CA Times Herald, 05/04/2008. (News Article)

"When the last train cars recently rolled out of Mare Island, something more happened – Vallejo's once-vital railroad tracks became completely unused. Due to a lack of customers on one rail line, and developer Lennar Mare Island canceling service on the other, California Northern Railroad is no longer running trains into Vallejo, a company spokesman said. After nearly 140 years of freight and passenger rail service in Vallejo, an era has ended. ... " [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Nevada Railroad museum gets head of steam as summer approaches

"Railroad museum gets head of steam as summer approaches" by Andrew Pridgen, © Nevada Appeal, May 5, 2008. (News Article)

" ... Whether it was Boxcar No. 1005, one of the oldest U.S. freight cars in existence, or a ride around the museum's tracks on its Tucson Cornelia & Gila Bend R.R. Motorcar No. 401, museum officials and volunteers literally cried 'all aboard' this weekend as its busy spring/summer season kicks off. ... " [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Thursday, May 01, 2008

CPRR Discussion Group

Welcome to the CPRR Discussion Group at the Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum.

See HOW TO POST to the CPRR Discussion Group.

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