Re: Bars on Caboose Windows?


Hmmm? I had assumed they were there for security. On the PRR I've only seen cabooses (excuse me, Cabin Cars) that were assigned to passenger service with the bars (N5As and some N5Bs). These cars had facilities for the REA messengers, who where often entrusted with valuable cargo, such as money negotiable documents (stocks or bonds) or gold, and I assumed that these cars were also equipped with safes, the same as the PRR's B60B messenger baggage cars. RPOs were equipped with bars on the windows for security for the same general reasons. Since all these cars were assigned to passenger service, I would not expect severe slack action to be an issue.

-- John

--- In, jimbetz <jimbetz@...> wrote:


I've been studying cabeese recently. On many of them there
are horizontal bars across the larger end windows (the ones
next to the doors).
These occur on a lot of cabeese from different RRs. And also
in fairly early pictures (such as SP C-30-1s in the 20's/30's).
These look like they must be for "security". Which causes
me to ask the following questions:

1) Was there anything of value to anyone who wasn't a
railroader stored in a caboose? Flares? Fusees?
Switch keys? Food?

2) Was there a concern about vagrants/bums/hobos taking
up 'residence' in a caboose that was stored? (I might
have used the term "homeless" ... but that is way too
recent to be used on this list! *G* ... and also way too
sanitary/politically correct).

3) Was the caboose locked when it wasn't occupied? Standard
practice? Who had keys? Were all of the cabooses keyed
alike for a given RR? Was it locked when the crew went to
beans while out on the road?

4) Bars? I mean, really, ... Isn't that overkill?

Or were they just locking up the crazies (rails) inside?
- Jim Betz

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