Re: New To Group - Question About Transporting Fish Via Ice Reefers

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>

Al Daumann wrote:
Both the model railroad club I belong to (Santa Susana Railroad Historical Society in Simi Valley, CA) and my home layout (10' x 12' bedroom, the Burney, Redding & Western set in Northern California in the late 1940s) have reefer traffic. I hope to learn and hopefully, eventually contribute some to the group. Initially, it will likely be more questions than answers.
On my freelanced home model railroad, I am considering modeling the transportation of fresh ocean fish from Northern California (e.g. Eureka) to points inland (e.g. Redding) and was wondering whether fresh / fresh frozen fish was transported in iced reefers in the late 1940s / early 1950s? If so, does any one have any links or references to "fish ops" or "fish reefers"? If they existed, were "fish reefers" dedicated to fish only service (not sure folks would want their strawberries or magazines smelling like an old mackerel)?
I'm looking for thoughts on if / how common it was to transport fish in reefers and how credible it would to model such service in Northern California in the late 40s / early 50s.
To my knowledge, this was almost entirely in express reefers and, for shorter distances, in baggage cars with the fish in boxes of coarse ice. This of course permitted transportation at passenger schedule speed. The PFE people I interviewed stated that fish was rarely if ever carried in conventional (RS) reefers.
If your railroad runs west from Redding to the ocean, I sure would like to see your mountain modeling some day! that's some rugged territory.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail,
Publishers of books on railroad history

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