Tim Gilbert wrote:
Compared to boxcars, covered hoppers were difficult to clean;
That does not answer the question as to how far from point ofIn the early 1960's ( a tad beyond our time frame, but the point is
still relevant) Steve Patterson took a photo of Cotton Belt's "Motor
Special" arriving at the yard in Tyler, Texas - deep in SSW territory.
Right behind the train is an AT&SF 70-ton cement hopper, sitting
on one of the leads into the La Gloria oil refinery. I'd have to look at
a map, but IIRC the Santa Fe didn't get that close to the Cotton Belt
in that area - although they did cross the SSW at grade further down
Beyond giving me an excuse to buy one of Kadee's AT&SF PS-2's,
I've often wondered just what was in that hopper. Cement? Maybe,
although the SSW certainly had sources of cement online. In those
days, did cracking catalyst move in 70-ton hoppers? That would be
one commodity that the refinery would need, for sure. Without having
access to the appropriate records, I guess we'll never know...