Re: hoppers in interchange,

Tim Gilbert <tgilbert@...>

Joseph Walder wrote:

What are your thoughts on what the anthracite railroads did to foreign open top hoppers during the steam era?

Between November 5th and December 10th, 1952, New Hampshire's Suncook Valley RR received four loads of Anthracite from a mine or breaker in Coxton PA which was in the Lehigh Valley: - D&H 3835; L&NE 14087; LV 17350 and PRR Glca Class Gon #209917. From November 1st to December 20th when the SunVal was embargoed prior to abandonment, there were seven inbound loads of anthracite (including the above), and three loads of bituminous. All three of the bituminous loads were loaded into home road hoppers. Only three of the six hoppers loaded with Anthracite were loaded into home road hoppers - the seventh was the PRR Gon.

This may be an indication that roads loading anthracite were more apt to poach foreign hoppers rather than classify the home from the foreign ones which could then be returned to their owners as empties. Please note, however, that hoppers of bituminous roads were not loaded with anthracite for this small sample.

Most of the railroads in the anthracite region of Pennsylvania would use foreign cars on-line to fill with coal and they tended to remain on-line going back and forth between the coal mine/breaker and the customer before the foreign railroad called and asked where their hoppers were. You can find this fact in one of the Morning Sun books because there's a comment in the book (I apologize to the author of the book because I forget the exact book, but it's one of the freight car books on the CNJ/LV, Erie/DL&W, D&H, RDG).
In these mine-to-breaker-mine movement cycles, did they include only hoppers of the anthracite roads, or include some from the bituminous roads, too? For this purpose, please consider the PRR and ERIE as anthracite roads.

I know that the NYO&W Railway was doing this in the late 1940s-1950s. Many B&O, D&H and PRR cars were in O&W coal trains moving over the road (especially after WWII when Europe was rebuilding and coal was being shipped like crazy to the East Coast ports to be loaded on boats to head "across the pond").
Carrying Anthracite, Bituminous, or Both? Also, to the best of my knowledge, the Port of New York was equipped to load barges with coal, but not ships while I don't believe any southern New England port was equipped to load ships with coal.

Now yes, there was some leasing agreements involved, and yes, the O&W did purchase both PRR & NYNH&H hopper cars, and yes, the O&W did not have many of their own cars available for interchange, but there were many comments from former O&W railroaders that said that if there was a foreign car was on-line and available, then it was "grabbed" and placed in the train.
That seems to be more of a testament to the condition of the O&W hopper fleet more than anything else.

Ben Hom may be better able to comment on this than I after his study of hopper movements on the Rutland.

Tim Gilbert

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