Baggage cars in freight trains


Robert G P
 

Hello all,

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R


Drew Bunn
 

Those could have been in Express Mail service if it was a high priority freight. 

Others will know more..

________________
Drew Bunn

Burlington,  ON
drew.r.bunn@...
905 483 0758


On Tue., Nov. 15, 2022, 16:39 Robert G P, <bobgp5109@...> wrote:
Hello all,

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R


Dennis Storzek
 

Likely cars going to scrap, or going to the repair shop to be turned into work cars. Most 'baggage' cars earned their keep hauling express for Railway Express Agency, Inc. I have heard of at least one instance where a railroad (Soo Line) received permission to drop a passenger train, and did so the very next week, even though the express contract still had several months to run. In that case the scheduled express car (a baggage car complete with express messenger) was carried by the local freight until the REA contract ended.

Dennis Storzek


Bruce Smith
 

Robert,

I would find it highly unlikely and would be interested in a more concrete reference to images that show baggage cars in freight trains. The only real example I know of the routine use of head-end cars was the prepositioning of express refrigerator cars by a local freight for loading and pick up by a passenger train. The example I have occurred with mushroom traffic from the Kennett Square PA area on the PRR's Octoraro branch. However, it seems common enough that the PRR's R50B express reefers were equipped with freight car safety appliances around 1940. 

Regards,
Bruce Smith
Auburn, AL

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> on behalf of Drew Bunn <drew.r.bunn@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2022 4:46 PM
To: main@realstmfc.groups.io <main@realstmfc.groups.io>
Subject: [EXT] Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains
 
CAUTION: Email Originated Outside of Auburn.
Those could have been in Express Mail service if it was a high priority freight. 

Others will know more..

________________
Drew Bunn

Burlington,  ON
drew.r.bunn@...
905 483 0758

On Tue., Nov. 15, 2022, 16:39 Robert G P, <bobgp5109@...> wrote:

Hello all,

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R


ted schnepf
 

Hello,

In most instances baggage cars in freight trains are empties returning to a location where they are needed, probably mostl;y east bound trains.

On the Milwaukee road there was live fish loading into baggage cars, with water tanks, along the Mississippi River and in Spirit Lake, Iowa.  These fish cars were for the kosher trade on the east coast.  On the Milwaukee they started their trip in a freight train.  Possibly they were transferred to a passenger train in Savanna, Ill.  I do not know if they continued in freight trains when on the eastern roads.  There are many photos showing them in freight trains.

Ted Schnepf
Elgin, Illinois
847-697-5353


On Tue, Nov 15, 2022 at 4:39 PM Robert G P <bobgp5109@...> wrote:
Hello all,

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R


ROGER HINMAN
 

I can’t remember how long ago it was, but i raised a similar question and someone responded that the CB&Q and implied other roads routinely put empty baggage cars in freights to route them to where they were needed. Supposedly it was a cost savings measure. 


Roger Hinman

On Nov 15, 2022, at 5:46 PM, Drew Bunn <drew.r.bunn@...> wrote:

Those could have been in Express Mail service if it was a high priority freight. 

Others will know more..

________________
Drew Bunn

Burlington,  ON
drew.r.bunn@... 
905 483 0758

On Tue., Nov. 15, 2022, 16:39 Robert G P, <bobgp5109@...> wrote:
Hello all,

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R




Hudson Leighton
 

I have seen pictures of SP freights in the mid-1970s with baggage cars.

-Hudson


Tim O'Connor
 


sometimes it was a coach

On 11/15/2022 5:38 PM, Robert G P wrote:

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

Thanks lots,
R


--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


Bill Parks
 

On Tue, Nov 15, 2022 at 06:48 PM, ROGER HINMAN wrote:
Supposedly it was a cost savings measure
I would assume protecting the schedule of passenger trains was also a consideration.  If empties were moved in passenger trains, then the train might lose time having the empties removed from the consist.
 
--
Bill Parks
Cumming, GA
Modelling the Seaboard Airline in Central Florida


Nelson Moyer
 

Branchlines used combines as an alternative to cabooses after regular passenger traffic ceased. Combines could be various combinations of baggage, express, RPO, and coach. Rebuild troop kitchens, aka baggage cars, were used in freight trains to ship calendars from a printer in Washington, IA. Troop kitchens were equipped with air, signal, and steam lines for inclusion in passenger car consists, but later in life, many steam and signal lines were removed, and those cars ran in freight trains. Burlington Bulletin No. 30 contains photographic evidence.

 

Nelson Moyer

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2022 5:15 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

Robert,

 

I would find it highly unlikely and would be interested in a more concrete reference to images that show baggage cars in freight trains. The only real example I know of the routine use of head-end cars was the prepositioning of express refrigerator cars by a local freight for loading and pick up by a passenger train. The example I have occurred with mushroom traffic from the Kennett Square PA area on the PRR's Octoraro branch. However, it seems common enough that the PRR's R50B express reefers were equipped with freight car safety appliances around 1940. 

 

Regards,

Bruce Smith

Auburn, AL


From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> on behalf of Drew Bunn <drew.r.bunn@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2022 4:46 PM
To: main@realstmfc.groups.io <main@realstmfc.groups.io>
Subject: [EXT] Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

CAUTION: Email Originated Outside of Auburn.

Those could have been in Express Mail service if it was a high priority freight. 

 

Others will know more..

________________
Drew Bunn

Burlington,  ON
drew.r.bunn@...
905 483 0758

 

On Tue., Nov. 15, 2022, 16:39 Robert G P, <bobgp5109@...> wrote:

Hello all,

 

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

 

Thanks lots,

R


Robert G P
 

Ive noticed the practice in high priority freights on CN, Lackawanna, Reading, ATSF, SP and I believe UP. I want to say at least one of the northwestern roads and Prr but cannot recall. Mostly in archive footage is where it is spotted, with the whole train passing by. Other than that I have seen photographic evidence in at least once in Classic Trains and various books. I only know that they were in a priority freight due to a caption or narration. But once or twice might have just been an educated guess from given factors. 

The fact that its been spotted more than once in archive footage from various roads leads me to believe that it might have been a little more common than expected, as these clips showed the whole train (or 3/4) where a photo just shows a small fraction (usually). 

-Robert

On Tue, Nov 15, 2022 at 7:41 PM Nelson Moyer <npmoyer@...> wrote:

Branchlines used combines as an alternative to cabooses after regular passenger traffic ceased. Combines could be various combinations of baggage, express, RPO, and coach. Rebuild troop kitchens, aka baggage cars, were used in freight trains to ship calendars from a printer in Washington, IA. Troop kitchens were equipped with air, signal, and steam lines for inclusion in passenger car consists, but later in life, many steam and signal lines were removed, and those cars ran in freight trains. Burlington Bulletin No. 30 contains photographic evidence.

 

Nelson Moyer

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2022 5:15 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

Robert,

 

I would find it highly unlikely and would be interested in a more concrete reference to images that show baggage cars in freight trains. The only real example I know of the routine use of head-end cars was the prepositioning of express refrigerator cars by a local freight for loading and pick up by a passenger train. The example I have occurred with mushroom traffic from the Kennett Square PA area on the PRR's Octoraro branch. However, it seems common enough that the PRR's R50B express reefers were equipped with freight car safety appliances around 1940. 

 

Regards,

Bruce Smith

Auburn, AL


From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> on behalf of Drew Bunn <drew.r.bunn@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2022 4:46 PM
To: main@realstmfc.groups.io <main@realstmfc.groups.io>
Subject: [EXT] Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

CAUTION: Email Originated Outside of Auburn.

Those could have been in Express Mail service if it was a high priority freight. 

 

Others will know more..

________________
Drew Bunn

Burlington,  ON
drew.r.bunn@...
905 483 0758

 

On Tue., Nov. 15, 2022, 16:39 Robert G P, <bobgp5109@...> wrote:

Hello all,

 

I have noticed from various video footage and pictures that it was not completely uncommon for baggage cars to be seen in a freight passing by. 

 

I am not referring to MOW but to a regular passenger baggage/express car. (Not express boxcars or reefers). 

 

Does anyone have anything to say about this or could explain why this happened? Were these cars most likely being used for a freight operation (under certain circumstances)? And if the cars were empty why mightve they not been deadheaded in a passenger train?

 

Thanks lots,

R


Larry Goolsby
 

When I was watching ACL Western Division freights back in the day, baggage-express cars would be in the consists from time to time. I've "assumed" they were hauling express that didn't make it onto the only passenger run left on that route in the 1960s, the remnant of the Dixie Flyer from Jacksonville to Chicago (via connections), or by mid-decade, Jacksonville only to Atlanta. Or they could have been deadheading after repairs at the Waycross Ga. shops. I also saw ACL refrigerator express cars fairly often, and while they were still on the roster, box express cars.  

Larry Goolsby 


sherman4863
 

I have seen a photo of a Pennsy baggage car on a freight train on the Minnesota Western in the 1950's. It was hauling canned sweet corn for eastern markets. It had two baggage doors per side and not sure if it was an insulated car?     Sam Sherman


Paul Koehler
 

You are all trying to overthink this situation.  A Baggage car in a passenger train goes B/O in route and must be set out.  The Railroad will arrange to transfer the cargo if any to the quickest means possible to get to destination.  Most all railroads had had highway equipped carman crews that could be sent anywhere on the division to repair the car including changing out complete wheel sets and after repairs were made car would be picked up by a local freight and headed back to ware ever car was needed.  They did not stop a scheduled passenger train to pick up an empty car.

 

Paul C. Koehler

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of sherman4863 via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, November 16, 2022 9:50 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

I have seen a photo of a Pennsy baggage car on a freight train on the Minnesota Western in the 1950's. It was hauling canned sweet corn for eastern markets. It had two baggage doors per side and not sure if it was an insulated car?     Sam Sherman


Tim O'Connor
 


Could it have been a MIXED train? In which case, a Railway Express load could be forwarded in a baggage car.
Amtrak handled Heinz products in express box cars out of Toledo OH in the 1990's -- several carloads at a time.


On 11/16/2022 12:49 PM, sherman4863 via groups.io wrote:

I have seen a photo of a Pennsy baggage car on a freight train on the Minnesota Western in the 1950's. It was hauling canned sweet corn for eastern markets. It had two baggage doors per side and not sure if it was an insulated car?     Sam Sherman

--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


nyc3001 .
 

There are quite a few NYC freight consists from canadasouthern.com that include passenger cars. The below consists are taken from the Toledo and Lake divisions.

Here's one with a NYC baggage (loaded with mail) and coach and an empty ATSF(!) baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-101446.htm

This one has two NYC coaches:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-053048.htm

Yet another with an empty NYC baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-010542.htm

There are many more consists like this. Usually the passenger cars are located just behind the engine (sometimes within the first few cars) or just ahead of the caboose.

While passenger cars in freight trains definitely weren't the norm, it also seems that it wasn't too unusual at least on this part of the Central system.

-Phil Lee


Bruce Smith
 

Phil,

 

I am familiar with M&E trains with this type of consist (and they, at least on the PRR, were technically passenger trains), and that would include the coach serving as a rider car for the crew. However, the consist you posted has both the coach (labeled RIDER) and a caboose…. Why?

Regards,

Bruce Smith

Auburn, AL

 

From: <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> on behalf of "nyc3001 ." <nyc3001@...>
Reply-To: "main@RealSTMFC.groups.io" <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io>
Date: Wednesday, November 16, 2022 at 2:52 PM
To: "main@RealSTMFC.groups.io" <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io>
Subject: [EXT] Re: [RealSTMFC] Baggage cars in freight trains

 

CAUTION: Email Originated Outside of Auburn.

There are quite a few NYC freight consists from canadasouthern.com that include passenger cars. The below consists are taken from the Toledo and Lake divisions.

Here's one with a NYC baggage (loaded with mail) and coach and an empty ATSF(!) baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-101446.htm

This one has two NYC coaches:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-053048.htm

Yet another with an empty NYC baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-010542.htm

There are many more consists like this. Usually the passenger cars are located just behind the engine (sometimes within the first few cars) or just ahead of the caboose.

While passenger cars in freight trains definitely weren't the norm, it also seems that it wasn't too unusual at least on this part of the Central system.

-Phil Lee


Tim O'Connor
 


Holy smokes! A NYC reefer loaded with 5 tons of empty cans from Cleveland headed to Juneau, Alaska !!
Presumably to be returned with a load of canned salmon. :-)

If I created a waybill like that at the club nobody would believe it !


On 11/16/2022 3:52 PM, nyc3001 . wrote:
There are quite a few NYC freight consists from canadasouthern.com that include passenger cars. The below consists are taken from the Toledo and Lake divisions.

Here's one with a NYC baggage (loaded with mail) and coach and an empty ATSF(!) baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-101446.htm

      ^^ 101446 has the cans for Juneau

This one has two NYC coaches:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-053048.htm

Yet another with an empty NYC baggage:

https://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/freight-consists-010542.htm

There are many more consists like this. Usually the passenger cars are located just behind the engine (sometimes within the first few cars) or just ahead of the caboose.

While passenger cars in freight trains definitely weren't the norm, it also seems that it wasn't too unusual at least on this part of the Central system.

-Phil Lee

--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


nyc3001 .
 
Edited

Looking more closely at the consist info, it looks like J-1c Hudson #5262 is on the point, which was very unusual for a freight train (since the Central's primary freight engines in this time period were Mikados and Mohawks).

However, my curiosity was piqued by the "NYC" reefers. Shouldn't the reporting marks be MDT? But the numbers fit within the NYC express reefer series 5740-6074 or the milk reefer series 6400-6660 (more proof that milk cars were used in express service), so I'm going to assume that these reefers were actually 50' NYC express reefers and that this is a mail and express train, not a freight train. GN 2050, an express reefer in the GN 2000 series, seems to corroborate this.

But the first car, B&O 385336, is a normal M-53 wagontop XM not equipped with steam and signal lines. The second car, DL&W 4829, is also a normal double-sheathed boxcar. Looking closely at the lading, it doesn't look like there were any perishables. So maybe these boxcars were pressed into express/merchandise service temporarily to ship dry loads, like the empty cans inside all of the reefers.

In sum, it looks like we have a J-1c Hudson pulling a M&E train (with no steam heat or air signaling system possible because of the XMs) originating at Cleveland's East 26th St. express house with some boxcars carrying dry merchandise and express, express reefers and milk cars with empty cans (one of which is apparently going to Alaska, as Tim noted), one baggage car of mail, a deadheading ATSF baggage, a rider coach, and a normal caboose.

So if my assumptions aren't wrong, we have one mystery left. As Bruce said, why the caboose?

-Phil


Jack Mullen
 

On Wed, Nov 16, 2022 at 12:57 PM, Bruce Smith wrote:
I am familiar with M&E trains with this type of consist (and they, at least on the PRR, were technically passenger trains), and that would include the coach serving as a rider car for the crew. However, the consist you posted has both the coach (labeled RIDER) and a caboose…. Why?
Bruce,
The likely answer is that the train crew is from a freight pool, with an assigned caboose. Perhaps the rider coach will be used by the next crew fron Toledo,  or it may be going to Chicago as a deadhead.

Other than the rider coach,  the consist is merchandise (LCL) in boxcars, cans in what would otherwise be empty reefers returning westward, express in boxcars, one car of mail in a baggage car, and a foreign baggage car deadheading home. I suppose the first two groups are moving on freight waybills, the other loads under REA or mail contracts.That's a mix of freight and "passenger" business from an accounting viewpoint, so likely some accounting clerk will be wearing down his pencil allocating costs.

Jack Mullen