Re: Harriman Codes -Some Other RR's Systems

Larry Rice

Allen Rueter asked...

"Are GST (General Superintendent of Transportation) codes relevant before

To which Tim Gilbert answered...

"I assume by what you mean as the GST Codes are those codes first
included in the ORER's sometime after 1961 in the column AAR Car Type
Code. (My copy of the April 1961 ORER does not have this column - my
copy of the 1/1967 does.)"

Okay... I'm going to try this again... Allen is referring to Great
Northern's General Superintendent of Transportation (GST) Codes. See message
52235. The GST codes were not related to the AAR Mechanical Designations,
nor the AAR Car Type Codes, and the GST codes were not shown in any ORER.
The GST codes were an internal company system that, in effect and probably
by intention, organized and standardized the operating employees "shorthand"
when referring to cars of broadly similar features that were immediately

Allen also asked...
" What other freight car code systems are there (besides AAR/ORER codes),
did most railroads have some code of their own?"

As Mr. Gilbert has explained, yes. I'd add that most seem to be more
comparable to the aforementioned "Harriman" type which identifies classes
rather than this GN scheme used by the operating employees and appearing on
train lists. Good grief Allen, I've been harping for years about the need
for an X29 on every steam era SP&S layout... Wheredaya think X29 comes from?

Larry Rice
Port Townsend WA

PS... When did GN adopt this GST scheme? I don't know... I do note that the
stenciling applied to the cars (near and below the load limit line) appears
much more frequently after 1961. Try asking on the GN list.

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