Modeling the World War II period . . .


Brian Chapman <cornbeltroute@...>
 

Jason's question about auto box cars in WW2 triggered a question or
two in my mind, maybe some here can help with.

Are there many individuals who model this period? If not, is it partly
because of security at the time suppressing information flow and
photo-taking?

It's such a powerful era historically, I've begun to consider more and
more this period as a modeling subject. But, because it was wartime,
maybe information about traffic flow, car loads and such would prove
highly difficult to research.

I wonder, too, how much the railroad industry changed during those
years, 1942-45. Hard to imagine certain changes -- upgrades -- did not
occur out of a forced necessity. For instance, increased traffic, did
it require signaling improvements on certain routes?

Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?

Thank you much,

-Brian

Brian Chapman
Evansdale, Iowa


---


ogdentowebercanyon
 

I model Union Pacific's Park City Branch in 1942 with the D&RGW also serving Park City and the Park City Consolidate Mine.

I was a little concerned about the flow of information but I am modeling a branchline so I know what the industries were so I can come to a pretty good conclusion about what types of cars they were receiving and shipping. I have also been studying some photos from right before the war and basing my rollingstock roster on that. I am working on the assumption, based on research, that the shipments in and out would have still been the same because life continued even though the war was going on. Of course, I have removed the shipment of automobiles and increased the shipment of scrap metal from old mining equipment which was gathered up to support the war effort. Mining in my area being modeled continued at lower levels so I assumed they would still need supplies such as lumber and other machinery. Farming in my area would have also continued as people needed to eat so I will have a load of John Deere tractors for delivery.

For me it works. When it comes to a mainline and what was being shipped when and where, I am with you in that it might be difficult to find information. Might vary on a case by case basis.

Brian Chapman <cornbeltroute@mchsi.com> wrote:
Jason's question about auto box cars in WW2 triggered a question or
two in my mind, maybe some here can help with.

Are there many individuals who model this period? If not, is it partly
because of security at the time suppressing information flow and
photo-taking?

It's such a powerful era historically, I've begun to consider more and
more this period as a modeling subject. But, because it was wartime,
maybe information about traffic flow, car loads and such would prove
highly difficult to research.

I wonder, too, how much the railroad industry changed during those
years, 1942-45. Hard to imagine certain changes -- upgrades -- did not
occur out of a forced necessity. For instance, increased traffic, did
it require signaling improvements on certain routes?

Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?

Thank you much,

-Brian

Brian Chapman
Evansdale, Iowa


---




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Andy Sperandeo <asperandeo@...>
 

Hi Brian,

Personally I know a couple of modelers interested in the World War II
period. One is even a Pennsylvania fan, which I find ironic. I mean, the PRR
ran more trains on a holiday Sunday than most model railroads can manage, so
I wouldn't think you'd need war traffic to keep a P Co. layout humming. But
I digress.

The World War II period did see many improvements on US railroads,
especially large-scale installations of CTC and widespread adoption of
diesel-electric freight and switching locomotives. On the freight-car scene,
I'll stick my neck out and say the changes were less dramatic, largely
incremental and evolutionary. In the case of brake systems, the war provided
another excuse for delaying the total adoption of AB brakes in interchange.

There were several notable shifts in traffic patterns, including well-known
ones like the oil trains started when the German submarine campaign made
coastal shipping dangerous, and some lesser-known, like the all-rail
movement of coal to New England, partly for the same reason. Also, the
predominance of eastward traffic on the the western transcontinentals was
reversed, even as early in the war as 1942. And there was no fall-season
grain rush in 1942, as shipment of grain not already sold was prohibited to
eliminate the usual boxcar shortages.

It really isn't that hard to research things like traffic patterns or car
and locomotive production figures if you have access to trade literature,
such as "Railway Age," and to AAR statistics. The most severe limitations on
railroad photography were due to shortages, and/or rationing, of film,
gasoline, and tires. Nevertheless there was a lot of photo documentation,
both official and by hobbyists. "Trains" magazine published right through
the war, too, and is another source of contemporary information for the
period. (I relied on these and other sources in my January 2003 "Model
Railroader" article, "A year you can model: 1942, railroads go to war.")

So long,

Andy


Andy Sperandeo
Executive Editor
Model Railroader magazine
asperandeo@mrmag.com
262-796-8776, ext. 461
FAX 262-796-1142


Bruce Smith
 

On Apr 24, 2007, at 12:43 PM, Brian Chapman wrote:
Are there many individuals who model this period? If not, is it partly
because of security at the time suppressing information flow and
photo-taking?
Yes, and therefore no, not really. I meet more folks everyday who model the WWII era. While I won't say that this is close to the most popular period, I am finding a lot of new interest. As for the lack of photographs, that can be an issue, but part of it is due to a more restricted time-frame. That is to say that if you wanted photos from any specific 4 year span, there are a limited number. The really good news for us is the availability of military and civilian archives such as the Library of Virginia US Signal Corps Archive, and the collections in the National Archives (Both of which have been discussed here many times)

It's such a powerful era historically, I've begun to consider more and
more this period as a modeling subject. But, because it was wartime,
maybe information about traffic flow, car loads and such would prove
highly difficult to research.
It just requires some perseverance <G>. There is a lot of information out there, and many of the models, both of railroad equipment and the military loads it carried are available (at least in HO scale).

I wonder, too, how much the railroad industry changed during those
years, 1942-45. Hard to imagine certain changes -- upgrades -- did not
occur out of a forced necessity. For instance, increased traffic, did
it require signaling improvements on certain routes?
Absolutely, for example, many many miles of CTC were installed as a direct result of the war. There were also lots of interesting rule changes. One of my favorites was the "freeing of the reefers" <VBG> where refrigerator cars were basically in a national pool, rather than under the control of their owners. Passenger trains also underwent a number of changes, such as the elimination of short distance Pullman cars, and the "freezing" of the number of trains.

I agree with Andy that the impact of freight cars WRT to new technology was minimal. In fact, freight car design took a big step backwards with the institution of "war emergency" composite designs for many classes. These, of course, help set the time frame for you modeling!

Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?
Books? The Iron Horse at War is great, plus a number of others as Andy mentions.
Modeling group? None that I know of although there is a 1/87 vehicle modeling group (not WWII specific)

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
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CJ Riley
 

Brian,

Put me down as one who has modeled WW@ for 20 years to date. It ewas a bit of
information in "The Durbin Route" (William Price McNeel) of the CO that got me
started. Can you who know the area imagine oil trains up through Cass WV and
interchanging with the WM.

Since the equipment isn't particularly unusual. other than flat cars of tanks
and troop trains with "boxcar coaches", I have concentrated on the cultural
aspects of the era, with scrap drives, War Bond drives, a draft board office,
etc. That material is readily available in many photo books, Life magazine
compilations and the like. Much of this is often available on remainder tables,
library book sales, etc.

As a child of that era, I was fascinated by WW2 history in my teenage years,
and it continues to this day.

CJ Riley


--- Brian Chapman <cornbeltroute@mchsi.com> wrote:

Jason's question about auto box cars in WW2 triggered a question or
two in my mind, maybe some here can help with.

Are there many individuals who model this period? If not, is it partly
because of security at the time suppressing information flow and
photo-taking?

It's such a powerful era historically, I've begun to consider more and
more this period as a modeling subject. But, because it was wartime,
maybe information about traffic flow, car loads and such would prove
highly difficult to research.

I wonder, too, how much the railroad industry changed during those
years, 1942-45. Hard to imagine certain changes -- upgrades -- did not
occur out of a forced necessity. For instance, increased traffic, did
it require signaling improvements on certain routes?

Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?

Thank you much,

-Brian

Brian Chapman
Evansdale, Iowa


---


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Ted Schnepf <railsunl@...>
 

At 12:43 PM 4/24/2007, you wrote:

Jason's question about auto box cars in WW2 triggered a question or
two in my mind, maybe some here can help with.

Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?

Thank you much,

-Brian
Hi Brian,

there was a whole series or 4 books written during the war by Farrington, Railroading at the Head end, Railroading at the Rear End, Railroading the Modern Way, and maybe Railroads at War. This author was always riding trains during the war and presenting railroad operations in their best light. They were in my home town public library in the 1960's and comprised the railroad book section. these books by Farrington are still a good prototype rear for that period.

Ted


Rails Unlimited
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847-697-5353 or 5366
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Greg Silva
 


Anyone know of specific resources for modeling the World War II
period? Books, for instance? Is there a Yahoo modeling group focused
on these years?
Another source which may be helpful is the books written By Kip
Farrington during that period. They are readily available from on-line
sources, normally through Railpub, and are very reasonably priced -
usually in the $5 to $6 range. Greg.


ed_mines
 

There's a fantastic picture book titled something like "Iron Horses at
War" which shows WWII railroading.

During WWII he government had some photographers taking rail related
photos including Jack Delano. Those fantastic color photos of freight
yards that Ted uses were taken at that time.

A long time ago I bought a soft cover book with '40s passenger car
consists. It includes a couple of troop trains.

Ed


benjaminfrank_hom <b.hom@...>
 

Ed Mines wrote:
"During WWII he government had some photographers taking rail related
photos including Jack Delano. Those fantastic color photos of freight
yards that Ted uses were taken at that time."

As noted before several times on this list, these photos are from
the Library of Congress Farm Security Administration/Office of War
Information collection:
http://lcweb2.loc.gov/pp/fsacabt.html

All of the color photos can be viewed online, as well as many of the
black and white photos:
http://lcweb2.loc.gov/pp/fsaabt.html


"A long time ago I bought a soft cover book with '40s passenger car
consists. It includes a couple of troop trains."

Sounds like one of the Wayner consist books.


Ben Hom


Charles Morrill
 

The book "Decade of the Trains, the 1940s" by Don Ball Jr. and Rogers Whitaker also has a good number of WWII photos. Lots of railroader people and railroad structure interior photos and not just locomotive 3/4 views.
Charlie

----- Original Message -----
From: "ed_mines" <ed_mines@yahoo.com>
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2007 10:39 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Modeling the World War II period . . .


There's a fantastic picture book titled something like "Iron Horses at
War" which shows WWII railroading.

During WWII he government had some photographers taking rail related
photos including Jack Delano. Those fantastic color photos of freight
yards that Ted uses were taken at that time.

A long time ago I bought a soft cover book with '40s passenger car
consists. It includes a couple of troop trains.

Ed




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