John Swanson <dwlscbq@...>
When I was working agency relief on the ICRR in 1967-1968 there was a (I think daily) grain door report the agent filled out. You kept track of the grain doors or had a bite taken out of your anatomy.
The agent received the grain doors and kept them in the freight room part of the depot. They were given to the elevators as needed. As I recall you were always trying to get more grain doors.
They were made up down south and came in cars that traveled from station to station, were spotted to the house with the section unloading them into the "house". After your doors were unloaded the car moved to the next station. I think I remember a full carload going to larger loading stations.
As I handled several stations, I kept a spare ticket dater in the car. You did not stamp the bill of lading on the car until you were sure it was loaded and ready to go. The regular agent did so once and the elevator owner cashed in the bill of lading (it was a negotiable security) and then just did not get around to finishing loading the car for quite a while. After the Agent grew back all the anatomy Chicago removed, he never did that again. It was one of the first things he taught me.
Dear God, I miss the joy and fun that railroading used to be.