Re: Back to Car Classes...



Information on the Votian language is also readily available in
Vancouver... to me, as I have more on the subject than all the libraries
including the universities in the region (and probably all of the
libraries and universities of Western Canada, perhaps even the entirety of
Cascadia). This doesn't, however, help others. Out of print materials are
certainly available to those who have them; those who don't? Well. They're
not available to them. ILL is a possibility, and something I make use of
often - but not every library's holdings are available to every other
library, and a great many libraries withhold certain things and not allow
them to go out to other libraries. In my experience, ORERs and CBCs are
often amongst this class (as are, with my typical sort of luck, most other
things my various research undertakings would require... which is why I've
now got to make a trip to Ottawa to the National Archives - because it
*isn't available, except there*). I have done my fair share, maybe more,
of in-depth, non-superficial research in the railway field and academic
work, so I don't need to be instructed on how to do research. Not everyone
who makes use of the internet, and not everyone born after 1970 is
completely fixated on instant gratification and willing to abandon
something if not instantly accessible.

Yes, it is possible to purchase things that are in print. Like most,
though, my funds are not limitless, and even less limitless is the amount
I can devote to hobby, which the railway absolutely is, and therefore
secondary to school, living, etc. So, if it comes to buying a book about
the ACL or the ATSF, interesting as all railways are, my money will go to
the ACL book (for example). Sure, there may be a book which, in amongst a
vast amount of other in-depth and excellent information, gives the ATSF
class numbers. However, would you be willing to pay $100 for a book that,
most likely, will end up sitting on your shelf after you've looked at one
particular page that was what you were after?

But this isn't even especially relevant here. Composing a list such as
this for quick reference will in no means reduce the value of existing
publications that are still in print, for it does not duplicate the
material therein. A list like this is decidedly not the "highly detailed"
information you refer to, simply a quick and handy way to know what people
are talking about when they refer to a class without specifying serial
numbers, or if you have numbers in hand and want to know the class.

Frank Valoczy
Vancouver, BC

On Oct 17, 2007, at 11:53 AM, destron@... wrote:

Did some more research on this subject, and have been able to come up
some lists (mostly incomplete) for ATSF (and SFRD)....
Frank, all of the Santa Fe's steam era class symbols are completely
covered in Larry Occhiello's "Listing of Freight cars by Class and Car
Number 1906-1991," published by the Santa Fe railway Historical and
Modeling Society (but now, unfortunately, out of print). Those for box
cars, refrigerator cars, furniture/automobile cars, and tank cars are
also thoroughly covered in the "Rolling Stock Reference Series" books
on those subjects which are also published by the society. So the
information is readily available, but not on the internet.
Periodically, subscribers to this list need to be reminded that a vast
amount of information on freight car history can be found in books and
periodicals � and, often, nowhere else. Though libraries and
interlibrary loan arrangements may not appeal to the modern desire for
instant gratification, and may even strike many people today as
hopelessly antiquated and low-tech, they work very well for those of us
with the patience to use them. When the published sources are still in
print, it's even possible to purchase them. What a concept! One can
assemble a sizable and very useful library on freight car history for
much less money than most people spend on their monthly charges for
internet and cable television service and movie rentals. While it is
now true that superficial research can often be conducted solely via
the internet, highly detailed information on most subjects can be had
only from printed documents.

Richard Hendrickson

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