Re: Stock car hours

Don Strack

On Mon, May 6, 2013 at 11:26 AM, Anthony Thompson <> wrote:

Chuck Peck wrote:
While the topic of stock cars is active, when did the 28 hours on-car
period start and end? I can imagine it taking several hours to load a train
. . .

Each car had its own loading time, which had to be shown on the waybill.
The clock started when the first animals entered the car. And BTW, the
28-hour rule could be waived by the shipper to a 36-hour interval. If the
shipper chose this, it too was shown on the waybill.

I found this resource at the USDA web site. It points to a PDF for USDA
Bulletin No. 589, dated January 5, 1918. The 25-page bulletin is a summary
of the requirements of the 1906 law and includes drawings of recommended
resting facilities.

Of course, my own interest is for anything that happened in Utah, and it
was at Ogden that UP, SP, and D&RGW interchanged livestock. The first
facility in Ogden was a corral jointly owned by Oregon Short Line and Rio
Grande Western. Completed in 1898, it continued to grow until it was
competing for space among the roundhouses and car shops of Union Pacific
and Southern Pacific. In April 1917, a new Ogden Union Stock Yards was
opened for business. Located across the Weber River west of the old stock
yard, it was owned by Ogden Packing & Provisioning Co., which was purchased
in 1924 by American Packing & Provisioning Co., a large interstate
corporation that controlled the slaughter and sale of livestock products,
mostly beef and sheep. In 1935, a federal court ordered the breakup of this
monopoly, and in 1936 Ogden Union Stock yards was sold to Denver Union
Stock Yards. The facility grew and continued in operation throughout the
late 1950s and 1960s as trucks took over the transportation of livestock.
Ogden Union Stock Yards finally closed in 1970.

Ogden had 356 pens for all livestock, and 214 low pens for hogs only. The
yards had 19 loading chutes for single-deck cars and 14 loading chutes for
either single-deck or double-deck cars. In comparison, facilities at Denver
were roughly three times the size of those at Ogden, with 1,000 pens and 79
loading chutes. Ogden was the largest stock yards west of Denver.

The peak year for numbers of animals was 1945, with almost 1.8 million head
of sheep, 300,000 head of cattle, and 350,000 hogs. The year 1945 was also
the peak year for livestock-related rail traffic, with 20,000 cars of
sheep, 19,000 cars of cattle, and 6,000 cars of hogs being either unloaded
at Ogden, or loaded after sale, or re-loaded after the prescribed five-hour
rest period. Sheep and the processing of lamb and mutton was the reason
Swift & Co. purchased the American Packing & Provisioning Co.'s plant in
Ogden in 1949. The Swift plant in Ogden furnished almost all of that
company's lamb and mutton meat for Eastern markets.

Don Strack

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