Did Pullman Sleepers have baths

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Did Pullman Sleepers have baths
Posted by Lindsay_K on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 11:21 PM

Hello, another question for you:

Did Pullman Standard Sleepers have baths or just sink/toilet facilities? Wondering from 1900-1915 so both wooden and steel.

 

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Posted by Deggesty on Thursday, February 21, 2019 10:07 AM

No, from the beginning, Pullman sleepers had washroom with basins and toilets only.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, February 21, 2019 12:06 PM

Wait until the lightweight Pullman train arrives in 1938 for the famous 20th Century Limited and the Broadway Limited; the master room contained a private shower but not a bath; I wonder how many patrons would use it... 

I am not sure about the arrangement of trains like the Overland Limited where the traveler needed spend a few days on the train, I guess there was a break for them to take a bath or shower in the hotel when the train paused in some bigger cities?

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Posted by Deggesty on Thursday, February 21, 2019 1:24 PM

I do not know just when the practice began, but in the thirties several trains, including the Century and the Broadway, had bathtubs or showers in the lounge cars, along with barber shops.

In 1950, the Southern had one master bedrrom with a shower in each set of the lightweight equipment built for the Crescent.

I expect people riding trains without bath facilities simply put up with washing what they could before reaching their destinations. I do not think that there was enough time at any of the stops to make a trip to a hotel possible.

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Posted by rcdrye on Thursday, February 21, 2019 1:42 PM

Several of the extra-fare (and even some no-extra-fare) trains between Chicago and Pacific Coast points had bathtubs (usually in the lounge car and overseen by the barber shop) in the early part of the 20th Century.  Off hand I can count the Overland Limited and the Olympian, as well as Santa Fe's DeLuxe and Rock Island's Golden State.  The only cars with showers in the rooms were the few that had "Master Rooms" (PRR "View", SR "Crescent") and the California Zephyr in the Drawing rooms in the observation car.

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Posted by Lindsay_K on Thursday, February 21, 2019 3:18 PM
Any idea what year the baths were available?
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Posted by wjstix on Friday, February 22, 2019 1:48 PM

80' wood Pullman Palace baggage-lounge cars built from the 1890's into the 1910's had a bathtub next to the barbershop.

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Posted by Lindsay_K on Friday, February 22, 2019 10:10 PM

Thank you everyone!

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Posted by Jones1945 on Saturday, February 23, 2019 5:25 AM

IIRC, the bathtub and the barbershop was closed after the extra fare was dropped of the Broadway Limited (in 1943?). And of course, the Century kept running with the barbershop and extra fare. I cannot find the source in hand but barbershop and the bathtub on the postwar version Broadway were later converted into bedrooms. (Please correct me if I am wrong)

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Posted by WILLIAM O CRAIG on Saturday, February 23, 2019 7:15 PM

Up to at least the 1950s that I know about if you were in a typical Pullman washroom in the morning you would be doing very well if you could maneuver around all the other guys and manage to brush your teeth, shave and finish dressing.  Most men would be shaving the "old fashioned way" without an electric razor.  As I remember there were at least two wash basins.  There was a dental basin similar to that in a dentist's office, off to the side, that was generally ignored.   There was a long leather covered seat across one end of the wash room where  you could sit and smoke.  The toilet was in a tiny room off the main room, separated by a door.  Most people did not have the time or facilities to take a bath every day anyway.  The universal shower was a later development.  In fact there were a surprising number of older houses that did not even have a bathtub.  But we had deoderant and the ladies had perfume.

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Posted by K4sPRR on Sunday, February 24, 2019 10:57 AM

Jones1945

IIRC, the bathtub and the barbershop was closed after the extra fare was dropped of the Broadway Limited (in 1943?). And of course, the Century kept running with the barbershop and extra fare. I cannot find the source in hand but barbershop and the bathtub on the postwar version Broadway were later converted into bedrooms. (Please correct me if I am wrong)

 

The postwar Broadway had two cars, Harbor Rest and Harbor Cove that were equipped with a barbershop, secretary and shower.  At the time these new cars arrived the PRR was debating what to do with its extra fare that was eliminated reducing special services deemed not necessary due to a lack of patronage.  The cars were kept on reserve in case the extra fare was reinstated which never occured, they were reconfigured with additional double bedrooms by 1956.  The additional rooms proved to be more advantagous as to revenue versus the original configuration.   

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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, February 25, 2019 1:56 PM

K4sPRR

The postwar Broadway had two cars, Harbor Rest and Harbor Cove that were equipped with a barbershop, secretary and shower.  At the time these new cars arrived the PRR was debating what to do with its extra fare that was eliminated reducing special services deemed not necessary due to a lack of patronage.  The cars were kept on reserve in case the extra fare was reinstated which never occurred, they were reconfigured with additional double bedrooms by 1956.  The additional rooms proved to be more advantageous as to revenue versus the original configuration.    

Thank you very much for your input, K4sPRR. So the lounge cars were kept on reserve from 1949 to 1956? or they were used on other trains with the barbershop and bathroom door locked? 

Some floor plan of Pullman built sleeper observation car:

POS21 - 2 Master Rooms, 1 Double Bedroom, Observation - Pullman (plan 4133)

 


 

This one is a prewar plan, it also had one shower for each Master Room but not a bathtub. 

POS21a - 2 Master Rooms, 1 Bedroom, Observation-Pullman Plan (4080-A)


 

PS2LS - 2 Dbl Bedroom, Lounge, Secretary-Pullman (plan 4141)

This is the 2DB Lounge car, we can see the bathtub was less than 4 ft long! It was better than nothing if a passenger gets drunk and need to take a bath. The consist of The General of 1938 had two lightweight PS31L - 3 Bedroom, 1 Drawing-room, lounge-Pullman (plan 4078) lounge cars next to both ends of the twin heavyweight dining car:

This is probably why people say The General served as an unofficial section of Broadway; two lounge cars plus two dining cars for an 11-car long consist, the two lounges conjunct with two HW diners formed a very long and roomy area for the passenger to relax, this arrangement was even better than the 9-car Broadway.Coffee

 

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Posted by K4sPRR on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 10:55 AM

Jones1945
Thank you very much for your input, K4sPRR. So the lounge cars were kept on reserve from 1949 to 1956? or they were used on other trains with the barbershop and bathroom door locked? 

A consist record I have from 1952 shows the Broadway using these cars, this would be prior to the redesign that came later.  Apparently they were in use and I would assume it was during this period that the lack of patrons using these ammenities dictated the change as they were used only on an as needed basis.  Another source I have on these cars stated they were rebuild in 1955.  

Appreciate all the diagrams you provided, nice group!  As to the General it was never an extra fare train and ran a slightly slower schedule.  More popular in ridership than the Broadway, that dictated the decision to eliminate the extra's on the Broadway.  The most popular postwar train between NYC and Chicago was the deluxe coach Trailblazer which also out performed the NYC Pacemaker.  Changing times, people just did not want the extra pamperings versus the comforts provided at a reasonable rate.

Good info you posted, thanks.  

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Posted by Jones1945 on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 6:01 PM

K4sPRR

A consist record I have from 1952 shows the Broadway using these cars, this would be prior to the redesign that came later.  Apparently they were in use and I would assume it was during this period that the lack of patrons using these amenities dictated the change as they were used only on an as needed basis.  Another source I have on these cars stated they were rebuilt in 1955.  

Appreciate all the diagrams you provided, nice group!  As to the General, it was never an extra fare train and ran a slightly slower schedule.  More popular in ridership than the Broadway, that dictated the decision to eliminate the extra's on the Broadway.  The most popular postwar train between NYC and Chicago was the deluxe coach Trailblazer which also outperformed the NYC Pacemaker.  Changing times, people just did not want the extra pamperings versus the comforts provided at a reasonable rate.

Good info you posted, thanks.   

You are welcome, K4sPRR. The reason I wanted to find the diagram of it was that I wanted to see how big is the bathtub or shower bath, turn out it is just a traditional Japanese-style tiny bathtub (no offence!) size bathtub. I agree with your point that many patrons didn't want to pay unnecessary extra fare for services they didn't want to use after WWII, or even before the war.  

Pennsy and the Broadway struggled for a few years since 1938 re-equipment of the fleet and finally drop the extra fare in 1943, the reaction was so positive that the length of consist extended from 9-car to 14-car, revenue-per-train-miles rose 525%. ( data from Pennsylvania Railroad's Broadway Limited by Joe Welsh) The Century kept the extra-fare and amenities until I forget when, but the target customer of the Century was a bit different from Pennsy's New York to Chicago trains.  :- )

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Posted by K4sPRR on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 10:16 AM

Jones1945
The Century kept the extra-fare and amenities until I forget when, but the target customer of the Century was a bit different from Pennsy's

FYI, the Century Club, extra fare and amenities such as the barber, shower,etc were discontinued in Sept. 1958.  

The Broadway and the Century, their history and stories are my favorites to study when it comes to passenger trains.  Interesting and entertaining to say the least.  

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 10:45 AM

K4sPRR

FYI, the Century Club, extra fare and amenities such as the barber, shower,etc were discontinued in Sept. 1958.  

The Broadway and the Century, their history and stories are my favorites to study when it comes to passenger trains.  Interesting and entertaining to say the least.   

Thank you for reminding me, K4sPRR.

1958! IIRC Broadway Limited already came from behind and winning the game. I love to study competition of premier trains between different railroad as well. In the past two years, I put my focus on PRR and NYC and then extended to B&O, I absolutely agree that the stories of them are interesting and entertaining, needless to say, all these trains were the best in the world, beautiful from inside to outside, from hardware to services! CoffeeSmile

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Posted by rcdrye on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 12:24 PM

The Pullman Project databse indicates that the 9 "Colonial" plan 4078 cars were rebuilt to some variation of plan 4975 between 1950 and 1954.

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Posted by K4sPRR on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 1:26 PM

Jones1945
and then extended to B&O,

Another great one, the B&O Capitol...the post war scheme of that train with the as delivered paint on their E units, wow...what a looker.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 2:35 PM

rcdrye

The Pullman Project database indicates that the 9 "Colonial" plan 4078 cars were rebuilt to some variation of plan 4975 between 1950 and 1954.

Thanks for that, rcdrye. I can find plan 4078 PS31L - 3 Bedroom, 1 Drawing room, lounge-Pullman but I think I need some time looking for plan 4975.

Anyway, these cars were purchased in 1945, it would be very awesome for me that PRR didn't abandon the Fleet of Modernism scheme...

 

K4sPRR

Another great one, the B&O Capitol...the post war scheme of that train with the as delivered paint on their E units, wow...what a looker.

Yes, I consider PRR, NYC and B&O were the big 3 of Northeast. Their trains looked great and the management was innovative and open-minded. I heard the competition between B&O's Capitol Limited and PRR's Liberty Limited was epic! I wish I could travel back in time to experience it in person! Smile

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Posted by rcdrye on Thursday, February 28, 2019 6:39 AM

The prewar and postwar "Harbor" cars with "baths" for the Broadway were all rebuilt to 5DBR lounge configurations.  The prewar cars were rebuilt in 1942 and 1943 to get them out of storage (the 2 DBR were not sufficient revenue space) from plann 4077 to plan 4077A.  The postwar cars were rebuilt in 1956 and 1957 from plan 4141 to plan 4141C.  The "Bath" is clearly labelled as a shower in both of the original configurations.

The postwar cars spent some time in the 1960s as parlor cars on the Northeast Corridor with no change of interior.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, February 28, 2019 8:43 AM

K4sPRR

... The most popular postwar train between NYC and Chicago was the deluxe coach Trailblazer which also the NYC Pacemaker.  Changing times, people just did not want the extra pamperings versus the comforts provided at a reasonable rate.

Good info you posted, thanks.  

Speaking of Trail Blazer, I found this record from the General Chronology of PRR 1939:

 

"June 29, 1939: PRR makes the first announcement of a deluxe New York-Chicago

coach train; NYC is caught unprepared and rushes to develop its own

version with ordinary unstreamlined heavyweight equipment.

(PubDept)"

I believe the deluxe NYC-Chicago coach train was the Trail Blazer, and NYC was rushed to make a mixed train consist for Pacemaker. No wonder I never heard or read about the Pacemaker turned the table in term of ridership; pic of the prewar Pacemaker is also as rare as Raymond Lowey's "Triplex". NYC was Indulged in the overwhelming success of the Century, while PRR found a chance to breakthrough. 

Sorry for digressing, I am quite sure general all coach trains wouldn't have a shower bath for sure. :P

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