Sunday, February 27, 2011

Legal length of railroad train

From: buddrice@juno.com

What is the longest legal length of a railroad train in the US? ...

—Budd Rice, Burien, WA

Friday, February 25, 2011

Advertising railroad employment for Chinese labor

From: "Brian McGuirk" brian.mcguirk@state.or.us

I'm a Librarian at the Oregon State Library working on a reference question on behalf of one of our state agencies. They are trying to locate any advertisements, leaflets, or signs advertising employment for Chinese labor from the railroads. If you have any ideas where I could track down such material or a picture of an original please contact me ...

Great website BTW!

Brian McGuirk
Web Services Librarian
Government Research Services
Oregon State Library


Advertisement in the Pacific Coast Railroad Gazetteer, 1870.
Advertisement in the Pacific Coast Railroad Gazetteer, 1870.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Moffat Tunnel workers

From: "Renee Beck" rbeck@deltacounty.com

Where would I be able to find a listing of names for the construction crew on the West Portal of the Moffat Tunnel? My grandfather worked with this crew and suffered an accident that resulted in the loss of his left leg just above the knee due to gangrene.

—Renee' Beck

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

CPRR bronze mallet head, 1871 jounal box cover, and rail chair photographs

From: "Ivan & Catherine Oakeson" catrine26@aol.com

I'm attaching photos of an 1871 Jounal Box cover and a CPRR stamped bronze mallet head. ... Also, a few photos of a rail chair that is unmarked.

I'm also curious if you know of the rarity of these items? Any additional information you can provide would be appreciated. ...

—Catherine and Ivan Oakeson


CPRR 1871 jounal box cover

CPRR bronze mallet head

CPRR bronze mallet head

CPRR rail chair photographs

CPRR rail chair photographs


CPRR jounal box cover

CPRR jounal box cover

Monday, February 21, 2011

"Lincoln's Other Presidency"

"Lincoln's Other Presidency" by Johanna Markind, © American Thinker, February 21, 2011. (Article)

"I wonder sometimes about Lincoln's other presidency. You know, what he hoped to accomplish during his presidency, before the South seceded. ... " [More]

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Sunday, February 20, 2011

CPRR locomotive engineer Arthur H. Real (engine #3) - Train Derailment 1899

From: MaddyAnn51@aol.com

My great-grandmother's brother was Arthur H. Real. He was an engineer on the Central Pacific Railroad (engine #3). His train derailed in Clarks, Nevada in July, 1899.

I have an extensive story from the San Francisco Call, dated July 26, 1899.

Are there any other news accounts of this wreck? Especially hoping to find mention of the family he left behind since nothing of family is included in the SF paper.

I am working on family genealogy and any kind of assistance you can offer me regarding Arthur H. Real will be very much appreciated. Also, I'd welcome anything relating to him prior to his death. ...

—Madelyne Pieper


CPRR Train Derailed at Curve, San Francisco Call, July 26, 1899.
CPRR Train Derailed at Curve, San Francisco Call, July 26, 1899.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

"California's 'big one' might be a megastorm"

"California's 'big one' might be a megastorm" by Tony Barboza, © Los Angeles Times, January 22, 2011. (News Article)

"... the most severe storm event on record in California, a 45-day series of storms that started in December 1861 and, according to the Geological Survey, caused such extensive flooding that the Sacramento Valley was turned into 'an inland sea, forcing the state Capitol to be moved temporarily from Sacramento to San Francisco, and requiring Gov. Leland Stanford to take a rowboat to his inauguration.' ... " [More]

Friday, February 18, 2011

Photo of Daniel W. Strong

From: "Edward Hodges" ehodges@ix.netcom.com

Three years ago, I asked for your help in locating the death date and burial site for Daniel W. Strong – co-founder of the Central Pacific Railroad. As you can see ... your help proved fruitful. But wait – there's more – I did more digging and found a descendant of "Doc" Strong who had a photograph of him – this is a big deal – because – up to this time, no publically available image of him has been available. Thanks to Peggy Gailbraith – Strong's photo is available ...

—Ed Hodges


The Search for the Death Date & Obituary of Daniel W. Strong (aka: Doc. Strong of Dutch Flat) Original Stockholder in the CPRR, Born July __, 1822 ; Died Nov. 21, 1889.


DANIEL WEBSTER STRONG, Timeline of events in Dutch Flat, CA; 1855-1869, Prepared by Doug Ferrier of Dutch Flat.


Daniel W. Strong, Co-Founder of the Central Pacific Railroad. Detail Photo courtesy of Margaret Galbraith, Strong Descendent.
Daniel W. Strong, Co-Founder of the Central Pacific Railroad.
Detail Photo courtesy of Margaret Galbraith, Strong Descendent.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

United Fruit Company passenger conductor uniform with Scovill brass buttons

From: "William Nimnicht" w.nimnicht@insightbb.com

My father died 4 years ago. He had a passenger conductors uniform from the United Fruit Company with brass buttons made by Scoville Mg'f in Waterbury. I've not had much luck determining the age or value of the uniform. If any one can help me I'd appreciate it.

—Bill, 4th generation railroader (B&O)

P.S. A photo of the suit and a close-up of a button are attached. ... There is a small tear on the shoulder and one on the collar. I also have seven extra buttons and one shoulder epaulet. Thanks for any information about this suit that you can provide.


United Fruit Company uniform

United Fruit Company uniform

United Fruit Company uniform

"Ever seen a train lay its own track?"

Those who lament the difficult conditions workers faced while building the first transcontinental railroad using manual labor will be cheered by the amazing progress exemplified by this video of a train that lays its own track.

[Courtesy Google Alerts.]

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Sam Brannan

"Sam Brannan, founder of Yuba City, ... was California’s first millionaire, one of chief financiers of Central Pacific Railroad and founder of California’s first successful commercial bank."

Saturday, February 05, 2011

"Photograph of four men who contributed to the creation of the Central Pacific Railroad line"

Please identify each of the men shown in this Stanford University "Photograph of four men who contributed to the creation of the Central Pacific Railroad line." Photographer? Where and when was the picture taken?

Photograph of four men who contributed to the creation of the Central Pacific Railroad line. Courtesy of Stanford University.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Portrait CDV Photograph by J.B. Silvis

From: MissMoffett63@aol.com

I have a Silvis Portrait picture with the Train on the back and was wondering where I could go in my area, to see what it may be worth? My parents died when I was young, and my sister-inlaw gave me some VERY old photo's and told me they were my fathers side of the family – thats all I know. Within the photos we came across this Silvis Portrait photo, so we decided to look it up online and came across your [Silvis] website. My fathers family as far as I know was from Millville New Jersey and or Cape May New Jersey, so I wonder how or where this pic was taken. I am located very far away, from where your history says he traveled. ...

—Georgette

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

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