Re: seasonal coal traffic


I've seen pix of Glenn Jean & ? gondola cars loaded with coal from the New River initially to Chicago via C&O going into Minneapolis in the wintertime.
Al Kresse

From: "destorzek@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Tuesday, September 22, 2015 3:16:55 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: seasonal coal traffic


---In STMFC@..., wrote :
The real unknown here is the cost of cheap water transport and the role it played.

However - this all being past history, in my Twin Cities studies, the Q transported coal here from southern Illinois. The transit of lake coal a thousand (?) miles via water, and the one hundred and fifty miles rail transport (Twin Ports-Twin Cities) and the Q still never made real inroads into the Twin Cities coal market. The BTU content of both coals was comparable. The TC market remained strongly lake coal through the time of this list. Only oil and natural gas knocked it off the throne in the late 50's /early sixties, and that was - because of BTU content.

I've often wondered where exactly to draw the line on the map separating rail hauled Midwestern coal from lake coal. You mentioned Neenah Foundry... keep in mind it's only maybe fifty miles from the lake at Manitowoc, and C. Reise had a coal pier in Manty. If Neenah Foundry used eastern coal, it was more likely to have come via lake boat than all rail through Chicago. As it was, every major port on the upper lakes had a coal pier; Duluth/Superior, Ashland, Marquette, Sault Ste. Marie, Escanaba, Green Bay, and Manitowoc come to mind, and I'm sure I've missed a few. Wisconsin Electric Power's big (for the time) generating plant at Port Washington, thirty or so miles north of Milwaukee, was built on the lake front specifically so they could take coal directly from lake boats - and this may have been the most circuitous water haul of any, all the way up around the tip of Michigan, and then all the way back down the other side. Yet, while the plant had a rail connection (via former interurban trackage) they never too coal by rail as far as I know.

Dennis Storzek

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