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On the Burlington, the main purpose of the enlarged Mather cars
was to haul hogs from western Illinois to Tobin Packing in
Rochester and Albany NY. These cars could hold up to 200 hogs, so
they were preferred by the packing house and shippers. However,
based on a presentation by Steve Holding (a retired
CB&Q-BN-BNSF dispatcher and who grew up on a hog farm in
western Illinois), most of the Mather 50 foot car use on the
Burlington came after the 1960 limit of this list (1965).
On 1/4/2021 7:03 AM, Mat Thompson
The question I remember was
simple – didn’t the 50 foot cars create a problem with
lining them up with the ramps on older stock pens? My
answer was yes but did comment that I have some pens built
with ramp spacing for 50 foot cars and that information
was included on the note the company rep provide the
conductor. I didn’t think about it at the time but many
pens had platforms trackside. Drovers would put up
temporary fences to herd animals onto the ramps.
The article to build these cars
was in the January 1998 Model Railroader, written by Jim
Teese. It includes one picture of an NKP prototype. He
says Mather began joining cars in 1952. He also said he
ordered Bulletin #25 from the Burlington Route Historical
Society which contained some information on the cars.
That Bulletin is still listed on their website.
Jeff Wilson has a picture of
CB&Q 50237 on page 17 of his book Livestock & Meatpacking. Jeff notes that most
conversions were double deck but a few were shingle deck.