seasonal coal traffic


ed_mines
 

Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.


I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.


Any comments?


Ed Mines


Charles Peck
 

My thought on this is that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home heating may well
have been seasonal.  Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would not be
so affected by the seasons.  Coal going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a warm 
weather traffic as the Lakes freeze in winter.  
My idea is that industrial coal use much outweighed winter heating use. Just my supposition, 
no data to offer. 
Can anyone comment on export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal or not?
Chuck Peck in FL

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 12:01 PM, ed_mines@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 

Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.


I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.


Any comments?


Ed Mines



Barry Bennett
 

I would think that the high season for shipping household coal would be in summer. Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay easier to ship and deliver during the warmer seasons.

Barry Bennett

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:19 PM, Charles Peck lnnrr152@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 

My thought on this is that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home heating may well
have been seasonal.  Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would not be
so affected by the seasons.  Coal going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a warm 
weather traffic as the Lakes freeze in winter.  
My idea is that industrial coal use much outweighed winter heating use. Just my supposition, 
no data to offer. 
Can anyone comment on export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal or not?
Chuck Peck in FL

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 12:01 PM, ed_mines@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 

Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.


I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.


Any comments?


Ed Mines




Cyril Durrenberger
 

Also the storage room in the house may not hold the amount of coal needed for the whole winter, especially in places line Minnesota.

Cyril Durrenberger
--------------------------------------------

On Mon, 9/21/15, Barry Bennett barrybennetttoo@gmail.com [STMFC] <STMFC@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Date: Monday, September 21, 2015, 12:36 PM


 









I would think that the high
season for shipping household coal would be in summer.
Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the
coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very
few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter
fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month
in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through
the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was
probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay
easier to ship and deliver during the warmer
seasons.
Barry
Bennett
On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at
5:19 PM, Charles Peck lnnrr152@gmail.com
[STMFC] <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
wrote:















 









My thought on this is
that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home
heating may wellhave been seasonal. 
Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would
not beso affected by the seasons.  Coal
going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a
warm weather traffic as the Lakes freeze
in winter.  My idea is that industrial coal use
much outweighed winter heating use. Just my
supposition, no data to offer. Can anyone comment on
export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal
or not?Chuck Peck in FL
On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at
12:01 PM, ed_mines@yahoo.com
[STMFC] <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
wrote:















 









Inline with Tony's recent post,
I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned
to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car
owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage
payments.
I've never seen any
discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were
stored everywhere in Scranton during the
summer.
Any
comments?
Ed Mines





















































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MICHAELCALO3403 <michaelcalo3403@...>
 

As Barry says - at least according to ads in the local Annapolis MD paper, the Evening Capital, coal was specifically advertised as being cheaper during the off-season and purchase at sale prices was urged by the dealers.

Mike Calo
Glen Burnie MD  (just south of Baltimore)


From: "Cyril and Lynn Durrenberger durrecj@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Monday, September 21, 2015 1:38:27 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic

 

Also the storage room in the house may not hold the amount of coal needed for the whole winter, especially in places line Minnesota.

Cyril Durrenberger
--------------------------------------------
On Mon, 9/21/15, Barry Bennett barrybennetttoo@... [STMFC] wrote:

Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic
To: STMFC@...
Date: Monday, September 21, 2015, 12:36 PM


 









I would think that the high
season for shipping household coal would be in summer.
Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the
coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very
few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter
fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month
in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through
the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was
probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay
easier to ship and deliver during the warmer
seasons.
Barry
Bennett
On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at
5:19 PM, Charles Peck lnnrr152@...
[STMFC] wrote:















 









My thought on this is
that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home
heating may wellhave been seasonal. 
Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would
not beso affected by the seasons.  Coal
going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a
warm weather traffic as the Lakes freeze
in winter.  My idea is that industrial coal use
much outweighed winter heating use. Just my
supposition, no data to offer. Can anyone comment on
export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal
or not?Chuck Peck in FL
On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at
12:01 PM, ed_mines@...
[STMFC]
wrote:















 









Inline with Tony's recent post,
I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned
to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car
owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage
payments.
I've never seen any
discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were
stored everywhere in Scranton during the
summer.
Any
comments?
Ed Mines





















































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water.kresse@...
 

After about 1910 slightly less than half of the C&O and N&Ws coal went to Tidewater (Newport News and Norfolk) and the majority went West.
 
Al Kresse


From: "Charles Peck lnnrr152@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Monday, September 21, 2015 12:19:04 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic

 

My thought on this is that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home heating may well
have been seasonal.  Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would not be
so affected by the seasons.  Coal going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a warm 
weather traffic as the Lakes freeze in winter.  
My idea is that industrial coal use much outweighed winter heating use. Just my supposition, 
no data to offer. 
Can anyone comment on export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal or not?
Chuck Peck in FL

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 12:01 PM, ed_mines@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 

Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.


I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.


Any comments?


Ed Mines




Dennis Storzek
 

Also note that electric usage and therefore powerplant consumption increased during the winter months as artificial lighting was needed for more hours of the day - both residential and commercial.

Dennis Storzek


Dennis Storzek
 

... rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.

============


By the way, railroads pay each other per diem for car hire. Demurrage is what a customer paid the local railroad if he held a car too long loading or unloading. Two different things, two different rates.


Dennis Storzek


Steve Haas
 

Barry Bennett comments:

      <<I would think that the high season for shipping household coal would be in summer.  Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the

       coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was  probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay

      easier to ship and deliver during the warmer seasons.>>

To which Cyril Durrenberger added:

      <<Also the storage room in the house may not hold the amount of coal needed for the whole winter, especially in places line Minnesota.>>

I'm sure the experience varied from locale to locale.  I was raised in Michigan's Copper Country.  Our house had a coal furnace fed from a stoker.  One load of coal arrived in late summer/early fall.  A second truck load arrived February/March to get us through the rest of the winter heating season (which in the Keweenaw started Labor Day weekend and extended through the fourth of July).

Only one load was delivered _during_ the winter months as in order to receive the coal, my Dad (and later I) would have to spend the better part of a weekend creating a path through all the fallen snow so the truck and the elevator could reach the coal bin in the basement. 

Given the rate of snow accumulation in the Copper Country, we tried to limit the deliveries (and hence the amount of snow that needed to be removed each time we ordered another truck load of coal.

Best regards,

Steve


Steve Haas

Snoqualmie, WA


Edward
 

Most homes with a coal bin in the basement in the northeast held about a ton at a time.  Businesses using anthracite such as bakeries had coal bins for their oven.  Churches using coal burning furnaces with automatic stokers had coal bins of about 2 tons capacity.  The high school I attended on Staten Island had a bank of coal burning boilers in the basement to heat the place and maintained a 10-15 ton supply which was refilled at least twice through the heating season.

Home heating coal was usually delivered from fall through spring, with the coldest weather bearing the greatest demand. People would try to save up and get a full coal bin around this time of year, before then need for heat.

Sack coal was delivered to houses which were in locations where an elevating coal dump truck could not feed the bin.  Coal was in canvas or leather sacks holding 100 lbs. and carried on a flat bed truck. The driver (no helpers during the WW II years)  carried each sack to where it was to be dumped, often through a basement window.  Twenty sacks to a ton.  The driver would also load the truck at the coal dealer's yard.

Coal dealers would stock up on as much anthracite in its varied grades (sizes) during the summer as they could store, to get the best whole sale price. This was based on their seasonal demand for buckwheat, nut, egg, lump, etc. hard coal.  Of course their yards would need deliveries of coal though the cold months. They would often have hoppers standing in their yard.

But generally not so, during the warm and hot weather season until late summer.  Many coal dealers were also lumber dealers, so they had 'round rail service with  box cars of lumber taking the place of coal hoppers on their yard tracks. In late summer (August / Sept.) they would build up their coal inventory for fall.

Ed Bommer






np328
 

I had posted prior on some of this, on the coal (and sizes) found on the other end of the lakes.

See posts 111293, 65630, and 65627.

Now recall this was just the Northern Pacific coal orders for their own use. There was also the Great Northern, Soo Line, Omaha, D W & P, D S S & A, the D M & I R, and recall that the NP had the cheap, very cheap, Rosebud coal reserves, so it is possible when you read the numbers in my prior posts, the other railroads may imported more coal.  The roads like the Soo Line, the Omaha/CNW would have gotten coal in addition, via Lake Michigan ports.

Of that post on the industrial coal: on a yearly basis you could be right. 

However of other posts – please remember - coal slacks or loses BTUs over time. Which is why it may have been for sale in the summer. The railroads all had labs and knew very well the BTU content of the coal they bought, and the BTU content from my studies was THE price determinant.

Six months is about the longest time it (coal) can be stored IIRC, which is for high quality anthracite. Bituminous coal used for both commercial boilers and residential heating, not so long. Lignite like the online coal the NP used, was not great to begin with and it slacked in about six weeks.  

Yes the lakes do freeze, however not totally until about December in Duluth. There is a lot of stored energy in the water from the sunshine. I recall from my days at UMD, the ships still moving on the water well after Thanksgiving.

On my studied portion of the NP railroad, the point I want to model, in the September, October 1953 time frame, in spite of the fall harvests, coal traffic southbound off the lake to the Twin Cities, is the number One commodity, by tonnage or car movement.

There were a great number of coal dealers, and much coal stockpiled in Duluth/Superior, and I would believe, all along great lakes cities. And this coal moved heavy well into the spring.

The city my father grew up in, Racine, WI had several large coal yards were the river entered the lake, plus the coal gasification works. (How long did these last and when did they come down?)   

There were advertisements to purchase coal early, and I bet these can be found on the Library of Congress site, <loc.org>

These ads admonishing people to – order coal early – however human nature being what it is, I would gather people waited till fall to order. (Hey, there are never shortages of snow shovels at the hardware store after the first snowfall in the northern states, are there?)   

I know in studying the yearly life of the NP gon, (the prominent coal carrying medium until the mid-fifties when the hoppers and gons were 50/50 percent, and then hoppers overtook gons;) it was early spring, in the shops for maintenance, late spring in aggregate use for roadbed, summer for commercial use, early fall, sugar beet campaign, fall well into winter – hauling coal. 

As I may have posted prior, there is a report I have of the NP, that states that the coal traffic from the Twin Ports to the Twin Cities, is the number one determinant in purchasing open top cars on the NP.       

I need to find and post that directive about returning coal cars to the Allegheny district.

                                                        Jim Dick - St. Paul, MN

              (and several college years in Duluth, MN)(where is Mr. Peabody's "way back machine")


Allan Smith
 

Regarding home coal use. I remember my grandfathers house in St Paul MN he had a coal bin in the basement, next to the furnace, with outside access. He would order a truck load at one time usually september, the truck would back up to the shute and dump the whole load down the shute into the bin, It would last all winter. The truck had side boards so it could hold more coal, probably 8-10 cubic yards.

Al Smith
Sonora CA



On Monday, September 21, 2015 10:36 AM, "Barry Bennett barrybennetttoo@... [STMFC]" wrote:


 
I would think that the high season for shipping household coal would be in summer. Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay easier to ship and deliver during the warmer seasons.

Barry Bennett

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:19 PM, Charles Peck lnnrr152@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 
My thought on this is that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home heating may well
have been seasonal.  Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would not be
so affected by the seasons.  Coal going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a warm 
weather traffic as the Lakes freeze in winter.  
My idea is that industrial coal use much outweighed winter heating use. Just my supposition, 
no data to offer. 
Can anyone comment on export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal or not?
Chuck Peck in FL

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 12:01 PM, ed_mines@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 
Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.

I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.

Any comments?

Ed Mines





cptracks
 

Our present house was built in 1905. It still has what appears to be a blocked off coal chute and the wood is noticeably darker around the chute on the inside.  This leads me to think that it was originally heated with coal and that was the location of the coal bin.

As built it would have been by an outside rear corner of the house, right by the furnace and accessible by the driveway. 
 
Colin Riley



From: "Allan Smith smithal9@... [STMFC]"
To: "STMFC@..."
Sent: Monday, September 21, 2015 2:10 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic

 
Regarding home coal use. I remember my grandfathers house in St Paul MN he had a coal bin in the basement, next to the furnace, with outside access. He would order a truck load at one time usually september, the truck would back up to the shute and dump the whole load down the shute into the bin, It would last all winter. The truck had side boards so it could hold more coal, probably 8-10 cubic yards.

Al Smith
Sonora CA



On Monday, September 21, 2015 10:36 AM, "Barry Bennett barrybennetttoo@... [STMFC]" wrote:


 
I would think that the high season for shipping household coal would be in summer. Households may USE the coal in the winter but BUYING the coal would more likely be an all year or summer event. Very few folk would be able to finance buying in their winter fuel in one hit, so would buy week by week/ month by month in small lots of maybe one or two sacks at a time through the year to build a stock for the winter months. Coal was probably cheaper in summer anyway, less demand, and waaaaaay easier to ship and deliver during the warmer seasons.

Barry Bennett

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:19 PM, Charles Peck lnnrr152@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 
My thought on this is that perhaps the market for coal grades used for home heating may well
have been seasonal.  Coking coal for steel making and coal for power plants would not be
so affected by the seasons.  Coal going north over the Great Lakes would also have been a warm 
weather traffic as the Lakes freeze in winter.  
My idea is that industrial coal use much outweighed winter heating use. Just my supposition, 
no data to offer. 
Can anyone comment on export coal going to Norfolk and such ports being seasonal or not?
Chuck Peck in FL

On Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 12:01 PM, ed_mines@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:
 
Inline with Tony's recent post, I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.

I've never seen any discussion of this except that empty home road hoppers were stored everywhere in Scranton during the summer.

Any comments?

Ed Mines







Dennis Storzek
 




---In STMFC@..., <edb8391@...> wrote :

Sack coal was delivered to houses which were in locations where an elevating coal dump truck could not feed the bin.  Coal was in canvas or leather sacks holding 100 lbs. and carried on a flat bed truck. The driver (no helpers during the WW II years)  carried each sack to where it was to be dumped, often through a basement window.  Twenty sacks to a ton.  The driver would also load the truck at the coal dealer's yard.
================

Must be regional differences in coal handling. In Chicago, many, many buildings on narrow lots had their coal bins located halfway up the gangway, where the the coal had to be brought in with a sack, but the coal didn't leave the yard that way... The first truck deliveries of the morning would be these sack jobs, the truck would dump a pile at the curb in front of the address. The coal dealers had labors (note for historical accuracy: mostly negro men) who would be given a sack, a scoop, and a list of addresses. How they got from location to location was their business. I do recall that the Chicago Surface Lines, the streetcar company was wise to the fact that no one would share a seat with someone who had been heaving coal all day; an old fare schedule shows that if a man wanted to carry a coal scoop in the streetcar, he had to pay a separate fare (possibly half fare, I forget exactly) for the scoop. After the trucks had spotted all these piles of coal for the labors, they then went to making deliveries they could service with a chute.

Sack coal was available pre-bagged for those who wanted to keep a sack on hand for occasional use.

Dennis Storzek




Armand Premo
 


People would walk along the tracks with a cart and pick up coal that fell off the tenders or hoppers.Railmen were tolerant and rarely chased the pickers off railroad property.The pickers carried a burlap bag in their cars to store their find.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, September 21, 2015 5:07 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] seasonal coal traffic

 




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

Sack coal was delivered to houses which were in locations where an elevating coal dump truck could not feed the bin.  Coal was in canvas or leather sacks holding 100 lbs. and carried on a flat bed truck. The driver (no helpers during the WW II years)  carried each sack to where it was to be dumped, often through a basement window.  Twenty sacks to a ton.  The driver would also load the truck at the coal dealer's yard.
================

Must be regional differences in coal handling. In Chicago, many, many buildings on narrow lots had their coal bins located halfway up the gangway, where the the coal had to be brought in with a sack, but the coal didn't leave the yard that way... The first truck deliveries of the morning would be these sack jobs, the truck would dump a pile at the curb in front of the address. The coal dealers had labors (note for historical accuracy: mostly negro men) who would be given a sack, a scoop, and a list of addresses. How they got from location to location was their business. I do recall that the Chicago Surface Lines, the streetcar company was wise to the fact that no one would share a seat with someone who had been heaving coal all day; an old fare schedule shows that if a man wanted to carry a coal scoop in the streetcar, he had to pay a separate fare (possibly half fare, I forget exactly) for the scoop. After the trucks had spotted all these piles of coal for the labors, they then went to making deliveries they could service with a chute.

Sack coal was available pre-bagged for those who wanted to keep a sack on hand for occasional use.

Dennis Storzek



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Allen Rueter
 


Paolo Roffo
 

Al, what was the market for the westbound C&O and N&W coal? Home heating and power generation in the Midwest?

Paolo


Allen Rueter
 

Do not forget Met. Coal for coke production.

Allen Rueter


Clark Propst
 

Ed Mines wrote “I think off road hoppers used for coal would be returned to their owners in the summer months rather than pay the car owners demurrage or maybe just to equal out demurrage payments.”

I think the opposite of that was the CGW iron ore business in SE Minnesota. They scrounged every hopper they could find all summer long.
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa


ed_mines
 

 Erie did something similar with their iron ore business out of Cleveland. Photos show strings of off road hoppers (all from the same road), which I would assume were leased during the slow coal season.


Iron ore deliveries by water were limited to the time of year when the Great Lakes was passable so ore was stockpiled on the ground in North Randall to be delivered to Pittsburgh in the winter months.


Ed Mines