Re: Proto 2000 Stock Car


On the Santa Fe, the GENERAL practice at feeding stations was to send foreign cars home empty and move the stock to Santa Fe cars if empty cars were available. I don’t think I have seen any examples of stock being moved from one foreign road car to another foreign road car. Santa Fe was a big railroad with lots of miles of track and the largest number of stock cars. A smaller railroad with fewer cars might not have the luxury of available empty home road cars for such.

If stock arrived in a Santa Fe car, GENERALLY the animals in each deck of the car were moved to their own pen and then reloaded back into the same deck of the same car in which they arrived. The bedding would be checked and any bad messes cleaned up, but otherwise the same bedding was used for the next leg of the journey.

Major stock yard would be a different situation. When animals arrived at a Feed-Water-Rest station, they were expected to leave in 24 hours unless the owner wanted them to stay for fattening. When animals arrived at a major stock yard like Kansas City, St. Joseph, or St. Louis, that was the end of the trip.  The cars were then sent home for cleaning. However, roughly 20% or so of the cattle that arrived at a major stock yard left there for somewhere else. Maybe they were being shipped east to processors on the east coast. Maybe they were being sold to someone in the west to build a new herd, for a season of finishing, or to change the blood line in existing herds. Those would be loaded into newly bedded clean cars. That is why the NYC, PRR, and B&O had over 1000 stock cars to move animals from the Mississippi River auctions to the east coast markets. I would not expect to see many UP or ATSF stock cars east of the Mississippi though there are exceptions.


J. Stephen Sandifer


From: <> On Behalf Of akerboomk
Sent: Sunday, September 20, 2020 8:56 AM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Proto 2000 Stock Car


Never thought about this before…


As the livestock need to be rested/watered/fed every so often, would (assuming the stock cars were off the “home” road) the road “resting” the livestock:

  • Take the opportunity to return the stock cars (to reduce per-diem), and use “home road” (or “in direction of travel”) stock cars to forward the livestock on?
  • Just leave the cars there for “X” hours, and re-load them?
  • Something else?
  • All of the above, depending on circumstances?


When going from “the West” to the East coast, would the stock tend to be all unloaded in the major stock yards (Chicago, St. Louis, wherever) for a time, then get re-loaded onto different cars for the trip East?



Ken Akerboom

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