Re: Gulf tank cars

Tony Thompson

Brian Leppert wrote:

Get a copy of Steve Hile's new UTLX book and look at page 125 for the photo of FTX 10073 and read the caption on the opposite page.  I'll argue that's a tank car BUILT to the USRA drawings FOR the USRA.

    I do already have Steve's book. I would respond that there are several scholarly articles available in the literature which provide excruciating detail from government records on ALL cars ordered by and for the USRA. There is not a single tank car listed in any of them. 
       There were a number of car designs created for the USRA, but only five of them received USRA specification numbers. The tank car is not among them. This and many additional details are readily accessible in sources such as James Lane's article in _Railroad History_ no. 128. That "tank cars were built as part of the war effort," I would not doubt, but that does NOT mean that any such cars followed the USRA design, much less that they were ordered by USRA.
         Steve's assertion that some tank cars were built for USRA has no research foundation that I know of, but I would be intrigued to know more. What, exactly, is the basis of this assertion?

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history

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