Re: WWII troop trains/North Platt canteen

Larry Buell

Bruce Smith wrote:
There are several possibilities -
1) The cars were so full of troops that the train crew needed the
extra space.
2) The cars may have been destined to be dropped somewhere and
the train crew needed a place to rid for the trip back.
3) The train may have been carrying additional freight cars with
equipment, or due to pick up freight cars with equipment and the
caboose would have carried the markers (and rear end crew) behind
those cars. Note that after early 1943 this "mixed" MAIN was
but certainly possible.
4) It may just have been a convenient way to get a caboose where
was needed as the MAIN doesn't sound like it was even close to
tonnage <G>.


Mixed MAINS were indeed a reality. My father joined the Navy in
early 1945. He traveled to basic training in April 1945, to San
Diego from western Arkansas. He boarded a troopsleeper on a train
in Booneville, Arkansas (CRIP) and five days later arrived in San
Diego via the ATSF and who know what other railroad. At this time
the military still traveled on circuitous routes to "fool the
enemy". Their car was the only passenger car on several freight
trains and they were "set out" every night for pick-up by another
train. Not having a diner, they stopped for meals along the way.
He did not pay much attention to the types of freight cars on the
trains but did notice (smelled?) that on several occasions there
were loaded stock cars in the consist.
Larry Buell

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