Buffalo Flour Re: Buffalo Creek Boxcars

Brian Carlson

Tim, actually I have a Bob's photo of DL&W 55203, built 3-57 Magor CC, in San Diego at a bakery in April 1957 one month after building. The car is stenciled "RETURN TO BUFFALO FOR FLOUR LOADING." apparently the Buffalo flour cars did get around. Buffalo was the grain milling capital of the world. I admit I don't understand the economics of shipping wheat east by boat the flour west, but it did happen.

The photo is also interesting in that it is the only time I have seen ditto marks used for stenciling.

Brian J carlson

Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...> wrote:

White flour powder from broken bags and spillage also could be the
explanation for this. Damage to a few bags probably was common in
those days of no cushioning. The seal around the door would always
be needed to keep out air, water and especially insects. Shipping
flour 3,000 miles seems highly unlikely -- most of the flour from
Buffalo was milled from wheat grown 1,000 miles to the west. The
BCK cars may have been "borrowed" (or leased) because they were
safe to use for flour. I'm just guessing about this, but spilled
flour is not proof of bulk loading.

We have several photos of BCK 40' PS-1 box cars with open doors showing
the remains of bulk loose white powder (assuming it's flour because of the
printing on the side of the car, see below) and special linings or a sort of
seal around the door openings. A couple of our BCK sources have mentioned
these BCK cars were running back and forth from Seattle, WA to the east
coast. Apparently, these cars were used as "hoppers" for flour like others
were used for grain until real hoppers became more available and popular.

The following info is printed at the left of the doors:


Sam Clarke
Kadee Quality Products

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