Re: Pacific Northwest Lumber Traffic

greg kennelly

Doug Polinder writes:

"My observations of Pacific Northwest lumber traffic agree with Chuck
Soule's sightings in Tacoma. GN received interchange cars from CN at New
Westminster BC, and I believe CN forwarded cars from PGE to GN.”

Except, possibly, in the later years of the era covered by this list, Pacific Great Eastern (PGE) cars would be very unlikely to be seen in the U.S. The PGE had a “Freight Connection” with the Great Northern at Vancouver, BC (via C.P.R as a result of barging traffic from Squamish, BC, to the C.P. slip in Vancouver) from at least 1930 (Apr. 1930 ORER) to late 1956. Following the opening of the North Vancouver - Squamish section of the railway in 1956, the G.N. connection was at North Vancouver (via either C.N. or C.P. (C.P. had running rights over C.N. from Vancouver to North Vancouver)).

Early sighting of PGE cars in the U.S. is unlikely as the July 1935 ORER carried the notation, “Freight Cars owned are not employed in Interstate Commerce”, and from at least April 1940 - January 1953 the ORERs stated that “Freight Cars owned are used only in Switching Service with direct connections”. I do not have any ORERs from the later 1950s to see how late this notation was included. It is interesting to note that, during most of the era of this list the G.N. connection did not involve C.N. but from 1930 - 1953, the Freight Connection with Canadian National did involve G.N. as it was at Vancouver, BC (via C.P. & G.N.). There was, in fact, a direct connection with C.N. established at Prince George, BC in 1952 but it was not listed in the ORER until after January 1953.

According to a map issued by the PGE circa 1958, following the opening of the Howe Sound portion of the line there were Freight Connections at Squamish, BC with Milwaukee Road (via Foss Launch & Tug Co. to Seattle, Wa), and with Union Pacific (via Island Tug & Barge Ltd. to Seattle Wa.). In the later years of this list’s era, there was a “preferential routing” agreement between the PGE and the Milwaukee Road which, of course, would be superceded by any contrary instructions from the shipper.

Greg Kennelly

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