Re: Manure shipped by rail

Eric Hansmann

Before motorized vehicles dominated the streets, cities had to clean up the waste left by horses and teams. An August 1912 photo if the Pennsy's Try Street team yard in Pittsburgh, PA, captures a transfer facility. I had long thought it was used to load gondolas from wagons to transfer the animal waste. Here's the photo. Click on the image to use the enhanced functions to zoom in for a look.

This photo is actually part of the documentation for a very large public works project that removed many cubic feet of earth that had been a hump on several city streets. Hence the image title of Hump District. Dirt was loaded into wagons by steam shovel then transported a few blocks to this transfer platform to load into gondolas below.

But we can easily see a loaded WNY&P GS gondola beside the transfer platform. It seems to be topped off with what looks like manure. Another partially loaded gondola is ahead with a wagon adjacent that my have just been emptied by shovel. Cities of that time had many stables that needed to be cleaned out daily. Moving the bulk material out to surrounding farms was easier using rail.

Eric Hansmann
Murfreesboro, TN

On 09/14/2021 7:53 AM ron christensen via <rxensen@...> wrote:

I have never heard of a farmer selling or giving away manure, but that might have happened. That was a very useful fertilizer for the farmer.
Usually the manure is a product of large stock yards or race tracks
 In the case of Chicago race tracks a lot of manure was shipped on the old PM to mushroom plants in Michigan.
The manure was shipped in gondolas and weighed in New buffalo Mi. If the car was too heavy some had to be unloaded.
All that went away in the 70s as trucks started hauling the manure
Ron Christensen

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