Re: Earliest Color Photo of US Freight Cars?

Douglas Harding

The Earliest Color Photo in question was not taken in 1910. The Fort Dodge Des Moines & Southern was formed in 1906. But it did not have any boxcars numbered in the 7000 series until later. Checking online ORERs, there are no FDDM&S boxcars with that number series in the Feb 1913 ORER. The line did have some new boxcars in the Oct 1914 ORER, but the boxcar numbers end at 7000. The next ORER I could find was Dec 1915, which lists boxcars 7002-7998. So the earliest the photo was taken was 1915.


Doug Harding


From: <> On Behalf Of Thomas Evans via
Sent: Sunday, February 14, 2021 9:35 PM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Earliest Color Photo of US Freight Cars?


If you download the image & enlarge it a lot, you'll see the colored starch grains mentioned in the linked descriptions of the Autochrome process.
I was doubtful at first, but I think that this proves it to be authentic & not a colorized B&W print.

Tom E.

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