Re: CN Stock Cars in the USA

Douglas Harding

Mark, the 28 hour law required a 5+ hour rest period after 28 hours in the
car. Animals had to be unloaded, feed watered and rested a minimum of 5
hours, unloading and loading was in addition to the 5 hours. The 36 hour
exception required a rest period be extended to 8 hours. The owner or
shipper had to sign the waiver for the 36 hour exception. In the Midwest it
was usually used to get to the final destination without needing a feed/rest
stop. Hogs were the exception, they could be fed and watered in the car, and
allowed to rest. The car had to be stopped for the required time. Sheep
could not be unloaded during the night, if the 28 hours expired during the
night, the car was stopped but the sheep were not unloaded until daylight.

I believe the reuse of stock cars depended upon the location. Your examples
along the UP may have been typical in UP territory, esp at isolated
locations where the only cars available may have been the ones that brought
the rested animals. In the Midwest, ie along CB&Q, C&NW, etc. where feed and
rest stations esp those just outside of Chicago, saw a larger number of
trains and thus a wider variety of cars were available, esp per diem cars
from other roads. The railroads quickly cleaned and moved cars back west
where they were needed. Then when animals were ready to be reloaded
different cars were used and sent east. The large feed/rest stations outside
of Chicago were also used for extended rest periods, ie a farmer might hold
animals at the feed/rest station for a week while waiting for prices to
increase. No railroad would leave a car sit for that long of a period.

Doug Harding

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