Re: Car in Duluth photo

soolinehistory <destorzek@...>

--- In STMFC@..., Indian640@... wrote:

Also, why do the cars in the rearmost track seem so much
bigger than the ones in front? (Example, GFX 10236 vs.
NP 8885 or NP 14368 vs. NP 35200) Were the reefers
really bigger or is this an optical illusion from the
photography technique?

It's likely a result of the use of a cut film camera with a
slightly wide angle lens. With "Wide angle" [a focal
length less than the film negative diagonal - very gross
rule of thumb] lens the so-called "wide angle" effect is that
objects in the foreground seem closer than they are,
and larger than they are relative to other objects.
I disagree that it's a photographic aberration, since the cars in question are not far apart, and are all in the middle distance. Refer again to the original photo at:

I think the simplest answer is the most obvious; yes, the reefers are bigger than the boxcars on the track just in front of them. They are also very likely newer. The first decade of the twentieth century was one of greatly increasing cars size, much like the sixties and seventies were in more recent times. Look at the two cars in the lower left corner of the photo; the C&NW "furniture and vehicle" car towers over the Omaha Road boxcar, yet the C&NW car is only built to dimensions that would be standard for common boxcars just ten years later.


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