Re: War Emergency Hoppers

Mike Brock <brockm@...>

Tony Thompson writes:

That coal hoppers went off line is not in dispute. That they did so "in
large numbers" is relative. The fact remains that most photos of coal
trains in coal country show very high percentages of home road cars.
I believe that most photographic evidence will show that during the steam
era, N&W coal trains operating on N&W tracks contained a very high per
centage of N&W hoppers. I'm not nearly so certain about the C&O...primarily
because there were certain areas where coal was, I think, interchanged
between other RRs and the C&O. In particular, I refer to the L&N. Before
making a claim like that, I'd want to do some research, however.

research has demonstrated that coal moved via certain routes off-line,
to the Great Lakes for export. But please note that such is NOT the same
"going everywere off line," as we might expect with XM, FM, etc. cars.
Here, things get a bit tricky. The Prince book shows...and there is a
pamphlet published by the N&W itself supporting Prince's book...that 22
million tons went west of N&W's coal fields...basically through Cicinnati.
Now, this stuff, apparently, found its way into Indiana, Ohio, and Illinois,
Chicago being mentioned. There was a lot of plants using coal back then in
those areas. I have seen some photos of groups of N&W hoppers in trains
moving through the area but real data would be needed to know for sure. The
B&O steam tape by Heron does show 4 or 5 N&W hoppers being moved near a B&O
coaling tower in the upper midwest. Tony is certainly correct in his
statement about hoppers not going everywhere off line. In fact, I recall
being told at one time in the 50s that coal could only be shipped about 400
miles by rail economically. Now, I don't know how accurate that statement
was, but....

I think if you want to model off-line coal hoppers, you need
documentation of what you choose to model. As someone else has said, the
favorite modeler's coal train in which every hopper is a different road is
plain silly. The farther we get from that, the better.
Yes. However, IF one were to model the Q in the Southern Illinois coal
fields, one might come closer to that than in other areas. Apparently some
mines were served by as many as 5 RRs with one...and it changed every
yr...providing the motive power. Thus, photos show mine yds with IC, Q, MP,
C&EI and NYC cars present. My all time favorite, of course, is that damned
Lackawanna [ heck, I don't know how to spell it, why should I? ] hopper
behind the Challenger on Sherman Hill. Second, though, has to be the lone MP
hopper in the long string of B&O cars heading from Lake Erie back to West BY
God Virginia. Well, both B&O and MP cars WERE black, after all.

Mike Hopper Brock

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