Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Train info: Multiple engines? How many cars?

From: "Stephens, Larry V" stephenl@indiana.edu

Thank you for your help on my earlier question.

On a related note: In 1880 did the UP and other lines ever use multiple engines? I don't ever recall seeing a photo showing multiple hookups back then.

And, how many cars would typically be in one train? If limited to one engine it seems like the train size would be very limited, especially once you get to the Rockies.

Larry V. Stephens
Indiana University
Office of Risk Management

Union Pacific #1277 at Dale Creek Bridge, 1891.
Union Pacific #1277 at Dale Creek Bridge, 1891.

J.J. Reilly stereoview
J.J. Reilly stereoview "229. Going into Colfax, C.P.R.R., Cal." showing Emigrant train.

Also see: Some Central Pacific Consists of the 1870's by Larry Mullaly.


Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: KyleWyatt@aol.com

[Above] is an 1891 photo of a Union Pacific double header on the Dale Creek Bridge. ...

10/04/2006 8:51 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "Stephens, Larry V" stephenl@indiana.edu

But that takes me back to my other question. I count seven cars. They would need two engines for that? How many cars was the typical train then?

I've looked through your photo collection and don't see many photos that give me a clude. Lightfoot-23 looks like a train with 10 cars. ["All Aboard Emigrant Train" a superb head on view taken by T.C. Roche, during his 1870 tour of the U.P. and C.P. Railroads for the E. & H. T. Anthony Co. of New York] ...

E.g., a cattle train loaded in Dodge bound for Chicago 10 cars, 20 cars (maximum capability of engine)?

10/04/2006 9:04 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: KyleWyatt@aol.com
Lightfoot-23 (E & HJ Anthony) shows a switch engine, not a road engine.  That locomotive would not have left the yards with that train.
The Watkins view of the Central Pacific at Cape Horn includes 9 freight cars (including the flatcar of lumber at the front), plus a caboose, all pulled by two locos – and that is a down train, not an up train.
In the [above] J J Reilly stereo, taken of the Central Pacific train crossing Nevada, I make out maybe 11 freight cars, plus three emigrant cars and a bobber caboose, all pulled by two locos.

10/05/2006 5:54 PM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "Larry Mullaly" lmullaly@jeffnet.org

I have something to add to Kyle's comments on typical Central Pacific consists, The attached study reviews activities over a short piece of the line between Oakland Wharf and Tracy in 1878. Most of the traffic shown was local passenger service and consists were very short. However, on the September 28 sheet, we see what appears to be the days fleet of through passenger trains coming in from Sacramento. I would imagine that passenger consists running east of Sacramento at this time were no longer than these trains, and perhaps a car or two shorter. The mix of cars is particularly interesting.

—Larry Mullaly

10/05/2006 10:42 PM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "Kevin Bunker" mikadobear45@yahoo.com

Truly fascinating stuff, Larry. Thanks for sharing it! I see that the familiar train numbering process was already in place – odd numbers eastbound, even numbers westbound, and that the precursor "change at Lathrop" we remember from the Sacramento Daylight-years were already established. How little the years can change things...

One open question I enjoy seeing some opinions on: emigrant cars went east as what kind of accomodation? Obviously their purpose was to give low-cost, no frills space for emigrating passengers coming west, but surely these cars weren't deadheading empty while eastbound...or were they? This is a bit like what do you do with an empty coal train consist after the load discharge...


10/06/2006 6:11 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: KyleWyatt@aol.com

Reilly 229 Train going into Colfax. [above] ... (I think the reference as "Central Pacific train crossing Nevada" may
be an error.)

Also check Reilly 215 Eastern Bound Tea Train at Blue Canyon CPRR.


10/07/2006 11:19 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: KyleWyatt@aol.com

[Regarding Kevin Bunker's question,] I believe there were lots of people already in California eager to visit the
folks back home once "cheap" train service was available.


10/07/2006 11:21 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "Don Snoddy" ddsnoddy@cox.net

I had always heard that the emigrant cars were dropped off at sidings along the way so that "land agents" could show the folks around. We also don't know that every emigrant stayed west, in which case they'd need a cheap way to get back east. Were there full transcontinental trains of emigrant cars or perhaps just one or two cars on a regular passenger run? This too might solve the deadhead issue.


10/07/2006 11:24 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "Larry Mullaly" lmullaly@jeffnet.org

Regarding immigrant cars:

I went through some notes from the Benjamin Truman Scrapbooks at the Seaver Center in Los Angeles. Although the references to emigrant cars all date to the early 1880s, a rather consistent picture appears.

Emigrant cars seemed regularly to have been used for second-class passenger travel. Timetables circa 1882 in fact, identify these second class consists (eastbound or westbound) as "Emigrant Trains."

Some random items:

A clipping from the Sacramento Bee, Feb.11, 1879 indicates that new emigrant cars are being fitted up.

There is a flurry of information about emigrant trains following the opening of the Sunset Line to New Orleans, On March 4, 1882 the first through freight train from the west coast arrived at New Orleans. Two weeks earlier the SP indicated an interest in promoting wheat transportation to New Orleans stating that wheat delivered by rail could reach Liverpool in half the time required to ship via Cape Horn.

An undated/unidentified newspaper article from about March 10, 1882 notes:
"Mr. Crocker reports SP building a combination emigrant/wheat car at Sacramento. If it works they will build several hundred." The car would convert from wheat to passenger sleeping cars. The railroad is charging $35 for passage from Liverpool to Los Angeles, only $5 more than to New York.

Elsewhere in this same series of clippings it was reported that the eastbound emigrant train from San Francisco to Kansas City required 223 hours requiring twice the time and at half the ticket price of first calls passage. On the SP second-class cars no Pullman privileges or pillows were provided and passengers were not allowed to ride in smoking cars.


10/07/2006 11:29 AM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: KyleWyatt@aol.com
Subject: Emigrant Train info

Thanks for the added info. I've seen photos of emigrant cars added to both freight trains and to passenger trains on the Central Pacific. It probably depended on the demand as to how many trains carried emigrant cars.

The 1879 Sacramento Bee item is the introduction by the Central Pacific of the Emigrant Sleeping cars, soon copied by Union Pacific (CP loaned them an example), Northern Pacific (a great engraving was published) and others. Robert Louis Stevenson, traveling west in 1879, commented on the change from the old Emigrant cars on the UP to the new sleeping cars on the CP.

I have heard of the SP idea to build special cars to haul wheat east and emigrants west, but I don't think it worked out. For one thing, the trains were never able to compete with the ships from the West Coast for the traffic.

Ultimately (in the 1890s I think) the Emigrant Cars were replaced by the Tourist Cars of the Pullman Company (and sometimes of the individual railroads). These were not quite so austere in fittings, and represent the change in the nature of the traffic, I think. But there had always been a fair amount of traffic of people wanting inexpensive travel, but who were not truly "emigrants."

10/07/2006 12:27 PM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: Hsweetser@aol.com

Actually, the practice of numbering eastbound trains with odd numbers and westbound trains with even numbers isn't that "familiar," at least not to us today, because it ended on October 14, 1899. On October 15, 1899, the SP/CP began numbering trains just the opposite; that is, eastbound trains were given even numbers and westbound trains were given odd numbers.

It appears that the earlier train numbering practice was started by the CP in late 1864 or early 1865.

—John Sweetser

10/07/2006 12:35 PM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

From: "John White" jwengine@hotmail.com

Second class sleepers were a great way for Pullman to squeeze a few more miles out of some of their older sleepers.


10/08/2006 4:22 PM  

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