George Eichelberger

When did I say “The Southern did not care” about car data?

Now we have posts tying the data in RERs to railroad’s “accounting” practices! As I responded to someone last night, if the RERs were published quarterly and let’s assume it took 30 to 60 days to get updates into print, WHY would any railroads’ Accounting Department use RER car quantity information for depreciation, per diem, car trust data or much of anything else? Another email I received says, if it was published, it had to be EXACT…..really, three months later?

Every page of the thousands of carbon copies of ICC Form 1742 submitted to the ICC in the SRHA Archives have a Mechanical Engineer’s raised stamp and a Notary Public certification of its accuracy. Although those forms were only sent to the ICC on 6-30 and 12-31 every year (until sometime in the early 60s?), the Auditors notes show us the railroad was VERY interested in maintaining accurate information for every change of rolling stock or physical plant, how much it had depreciated, etc. Their freight rates depended on that data.

So accurate, there are “corrected” 1742 entries for errors of $.10.

Setting this thread aside, if anyone are interested in seeing examples of some of the ICC reports and summaries, I’ll upload a few examples. Google Drive appears to provide a URL that lets anyone access particular files. Like any reference we can find that began nearly 100 years ago, I am sure they are not 100% “EXACT”, particularly for information developed for assets acquired prior to 1916.


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