Re: Distinctive Flat Car Toothpicks Timber Load

Schuyler Larrabee

Tony, there must have been some flexibility.  As I am sure you’ve seen photos, the ERIE delivered a one-piece transatlantic cable, from where to where I am not sure, in a string of, I think, 11 fairly modern steel gondolas, with the cable laid in each gon zig-zag fashion, and then looped up and over into the next car.  The gons were all chained together – they certainly didn’t want any sort of break-in-two messing that up!


The train had a banner on it because of the special move, a very unusual shipment.


But the point of the photos I’ve seen is the problem that delayed the shipment: one of the cars developed a hot box!  Everything had to be moved into a siding ‘til that could be repaired!!




From: <> On Behalf Of Tony Thompson
Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2020 1:44 PM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Distinctive Flat Car Toothpicks Timber Load


Dave Parker wrote:

Tony, can you define "early", and maybe provide an effective date?  There are photos of Swift reefer with banners as late as 1934.  Was there any connection to the billboard reefer ban, or were they independent edicts from the ICC?


         As late as the first decade of the 20th century, posters, banners and notices of all kinds were attached to freight car sides, and I recall that those were banned (i browsed ALL of Railway Age while researching the PFE book) in that period, but I can't remember more specifically. 

         Whether one could obtain dispensation for a really special load, I don't know.


Tony Thompson




Join to automatically receive all group messages.