Garth Groff and Sally Sanford
C&O 9500-9500 were very short. The height over the running board was 13' 3 9/16", which is a pretty picky measurement, but that's what is on the GA drawing in Shaver's book. My 1959 ORER gives the IH as 8' 6", but the side doors only cleared a fraction over 8'
These cars were fitted with Evans auto loaders when new. During WWII the loaders were removed, though some may have been briefly restored after the war. Some of these cars went into auto parts service, but most were in general service. By 1959 there were still 425 cars left, all classed as XM. Some of these cars remained as late as the 1980s in MW service, since their twin side doors and the end doors made them useful in outfit trains. I think I have a negative awaiting scanning of one of the last taken at Charlottesville around 1986.
Attached is a photo of one such car on the Nelson & Albemarle in 1951 at Esmont, Virginia. The car was either carrying soapstone products of some sort, or is an empty. Other than pulpwood, soapstone was about all the N&A generated (the train is outbound to their C&O connection at Warren). The occasion was the recent delivery of N&A 1, a GE 44-tonner. Photographer Charles Arnold was engaged to take a series of views of the new diesel in action. The photo is from my personal collection.
Garth Groff 🦆