Classic Railroad Quiz (at least 50 years old).

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, May 28, 2009 10:04 AM
wanswheel

Actually former President and incumbent Congressman in 1833.

That would be John Quincy Adams

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Posted by wanswheel on Thursday, May 28, 2009 10:31 AM

That's right. Now what railroad?  Here's a large hint:

From New York to Philadelphia by John Quincy Adams

Friday, November 8, 1833

Blessed, ever blessed be the name of God, that I am alive and have escaped unhurt from the most dreadful catastrophe that ever my eyes beheld! We arrived at New York at half past six this morning. I took leave of Mr. Harrod, his daughter, my niece Elizabeth, took a hack with Mr. Potter, and crossed from the East to the North River, put my baggage into the steamboat Independence, Captain Douglas, and walked to the City Hotel. I found that my wife and family proceeded thence last Monday on their way to Washington. There was a card of invitation to attend a pubic dinner to be given to Commodore Chauncey to-morrow; to which I wrote a declining answer. I then returned to the steamboat, which left the wharf at eight, and landed the passengers at Amboy about twenty minutes past ten. The boat was crowded almost to suffocation, and people of every land and language seemed congregated in it — among the rest, a whole tribe of wild Irish, whose language I now for the first time heard spoken. The only persons of the passengers whom I knew were David B. Ogden, of New York, and Dr. McDowell, whom Dr. Condict introduced to me last winter at Washington, and who was then a Professor at Princeton College, but has since left it and has removed to Philadelphia. There were upwards of two hundred passengers in the railroad cars. There were two locomotive engines, A and B, each drawing an accommodation car, a sort of moving stage, in a square, with open railing, a platform, and a row of benches holding forty or fifty persons; then four or five cars in the form of large stage coaches, each in three compartments, with doors of entrance on both sides, and two opposite benches, on each of which sat four passengers. Each train was closed with a high, quadrangular, open-railed baggage-wagon, in which the baggage of all the passengers in the train was heaped up, the whole covered with an oil-cloth. I was in car B, No. 1, and of course in the second train. Of the first ten miles, two were run in four minutes, marked by a watch of a Mr. De Yong, in the same car and division with me. They stopped, oiled the wheels, and proceeded. We had gone about five miles further, and had traversed one mile in one minute and thirty-six seconds, when the front left wheel of the car in which I was, having taken fire and burned for several minutes, slipped off the rail. The pressure on the right side of the car, then meeting resistance, raised it with both wheels from the rail, and it was oversetting on the left side, but the same pressure on the car immediately behind raised its left side from the rail till it actually overset to the right, and, in oversetting, brought back the car in which I was, to stand on the four wheels, and saved from injury all the passengers in it. The train was stopped, I suppose within five seconds of the time when our wheel slipped off the rail, but it was then going at the rate of sixty feet in a second, and was dragged nearly two hundred feet before it could stop. Of sixteen persons in two of the three compartments of the car that overset, one only escaped unhurt — a Dr. Cuyler. One side of the car was stove in, and almost demolished. One man, John C. Stedman, of Raleigh, North Carolina, was so dreadfully mangled that he died within ten minutes; another, named, I believe, Welles, of Pennsylvania, can probably not survive the day.
Captain Vanderbilt had his leg broken, as had Mr. West, minister of the Episcopal Church at Newport, Rhode Island; Mrs. Bartlett, wife of Lieutenant Bartlett, of the U. S. Corps of Engineers, and her sister, dangerously hurt; her child, about three years old, is not expected to live; Mr. and Mrs. Charles, of St. Louis, Missouri, severely cut and bruised; a Mr. Dreyfuss, of Philadelphia, cut in the head and sprained in the back; and six other persons, among whom are Dr. McDowell and a young lady with him, gashed in the head and otherwise wounded. The scene of sufferance was excruciating. Men, women, and a child scattered along the road, bleeding, mangled, moaning, writhing in torture, and dying, was a trial of feeling to which I had never before been called; and when the thought came over me that a few yards more of pressure on the car in which I was would have laid me a prostrate corpse like him who was before my eyes, or a cripple for life; and, more insupportable still, what if my wife and grandchild had been in the car behind me! Merciful God! how can the infirmity of my nature express or feel the gratitude that should swell in my bosom that this torture, a thousand-fold worse than death, has been spared me? At my request, a coroner's inquest was called upon the deceased. The other dying man was left at Hightstown, three miles beyond where the disaster happened; and, after a detention of nearly three hours, the train was resumed, and, leaving the two broken cars behind, the rest proceeded to Bordentown, thirty-five miles from Amboy. The coroner's inquest, held by a magistrate of the court, had been sworn, and I had given my testimony before we left the fatal spot. Several of the wounded were left at Hightstown. The rest were transported on cushions from the cars over the railway to Bordentown, and thence with us, in the steamboat New Philadelphia, to Philadelphia. On reaching the wharf, the Rev. Mr. Brackenridge came on board, and told me he had heard I had been seriously injured by the accident on the railway. Apprehensive that such rumors might circulate and reach my family, I wrote on board the steamboat to my wife, at Washington, and to my son Charles, at Boston, and dispatched the letters to the post-office at Philadelphia. We landed at Chestnut Street wharf between six and seven in the evening, and I took lodgings with Mr. Potter, at the United States Hotel. I resolved to proceed on my journey to-morrow morning, but called and spent an hour of the evening at Mr. John Sergeant's...

http://www.masshist.org/jqadiaries/doc.cfm?id=jqad39_178

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Posted by KCSfan on Thursday, May 28, 2009 8:29 PM

Mike,

Was the railroad the Camden & Amboy?

Mark

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Posted by wanswheel on Thursday, May 28, 2009 9:21 PM
Mark, yes it was C&A, however John Quincy Adams referred to it as the Amboy and Bordentown Railway, which was descriptive until 1834. That was Cornelius Vanderbilt's first train ride too. I guess it's your turn. --Mike
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Posted by Texas Zepher on Thursday, May 28, 2009 9:24 PM

 Since Mark already listed my first choice, I'll guess the Perth & Amboy.

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Posted by KCSfan on Thursday, June 4, 2009 6:31 AM

Upon checking to see why there was no recent activity on this thread I was chagrined to see that Mike had declared me the winner of the last question and I was the one at fault for not posting another. Sorry about that guys but here's my long over due question.

Over the years many railroads had trains that were either officially or unofficially named "Cannon Ball". To the best of my knowledge only two remained by the mid 1950's. What railroads ran the last two Cannon Balls, what were their routes and what first class accommodations were available on each of the two trains?  

Mark

 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, June 4, 2009 10:01 AM

The LIRR "Cannon Ball" ran between Long Island City and Montauk on Fridays only, and may have been an all-parlor car consist.

The other would be the N&W "Wabash Cannon Ball" between Detroit and St. Louis, which ran until April 30, 1971 and had no first-class accomodations at the end.  It may have had a parlor car at earlier dates.

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Posted by al-in-chgo on Thursday, June 4, 2009 6:13 PM

IIRC the Wabash Cannon, while old enough to fit this site, was not really a legendary train. The Wabash named its train in the late 1940s hoping that some of the glamour of the folk song would rub off.  That came home to haunt N&W in the late Sixties when they filed with ICC to discontinue the train, but were met with a great deal of opposition from people who had been told by media that the train was the last survivor of a glorious tradition.  The "tradition" was only about 20 years old. 

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Posted by wanswheel on Thursday, June 4, 2009 8:17 PM

N&W had a Cannonball train in 1949, New York to Norfolk, one sleeper.

http://imagebase.lib.vt.edu/view_record.php?URN=ns3688&mode=popup

Roy Acuff might sing Wabash Cannonball, depending on the whether.

http://www.jazz-on-line.com/a/ramw/1938_223.ram

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Posted by henry6 on Thursday, June 4, 2009 9:36 PM

Wasn't th other one the Hooterville Cannon Ball to Petticoat Jct.?  And the LIRR CB was Parlor Car Service under the old Pullman Co. auspicies, then LIRR services.  Even today the train gets better than average commuter services but I'm not sure what.

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Posted by Texas Zepher on Thursday, June 4, 2009 11:23 PM

KCSfan
Over the years many railroads had trains that were either officially or unofficially named "Cannon Ball". To the best of my knowledge only two remained by the mid 1950's. What railroads ran the last two Cannon Balls, what were their routes and what first class accommodations were available on each of the two trains?

Seems like the folk lore of Casey Jones has him on the point of the Cannon Ball.  That would make the railroad the Illinois Central and the date around 1900.   The train ran from Chicago to New Orleans as a low cost companion train to the Panama Limited.  The train later was renamed to the City of New Orleans, but I don't know when nor what the consist was.  The best class would have been parlor.

Then there was a Milwaukee train that supposedly ran until 1972 (past Amtrak?).  Called the Watertown Cannonball it was a commuter train that ran between Milwaukee and Watertown.  The Milwaukee applied to discontinue it in 1957 and again in 1958 both denied.  At its peek there were 30 trains a day.  Nothing but coach.

 Then the Boston and Main ran a Cannon Ball from Boston to Plymouth - also 1900s with no idea how long it ran.  I know nothing more about it.

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Posted by al-in-chgo on Thursday, June 4, 2009 11:24 PM

henry6

Wasn't th other one the Hooterville Cannon Ball to Petticoat Jct.?  And the LIRR CB was Parlor Car Service under the old Pullman Co. auspicies, then LIRR services.  Even today the train gets better than average commuter services but I'm not sure what.

henry6

Wasn't th other one the Hooterville Cannon Ball to Petticoat Jct.?  And the LIRR CB was Parlor Car Service under the old Pullman Co. auspicies, then LIRR services.  Even today the train gets better than average commuter services but I'm not sure what.

(Courtesy Wikipedia):  The Montauk Line has heavy ridership and frequent service as far as Patchogue and commuter service as far as Speonk. In the summer, with travelers going out to The Hamptons, Fire Island and other beaches, additional service is operated to the far eastern terminal at Montauk, such as the Cannonball, a Friday afternoon train departing from Hunterspoint Avenue and running non-stop between Jamaica and Westhampton.

 

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Posted by henry6 on Friday, June 5, 2009 8:46 AM

Just looking at the LIRR online page and schedules...Friday's only there is a 3:58PM departure from Hunterspoint Ave to Montauk with limited stops with a 2 hr 50 minute point to point running time, there is a later train at 2 hrs 59 minutes and three other trains at 3 hr 20 minutes to 3 hrs 30 some odd minutes.  And this is summertime service which began May 18th.  Nowhere, however, on the web, is there any indication of extra services or extra fare services. In the printed schedule I have ending 5/17 the Friday only train leave Hunterspoint at 4:06 and arrives 6:38, a two hour and 32 minute race.  And the printed timetable also does not indicate any premium services or fares.  But I had heard or read somewhere that there was bar car service up until quite recently.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Friday, June 5, 2009 10:06 AM

The May 1968 issue of TRAINS had an article titled "Parlor Car East" which covered LIRR's parlor car service and featured the "Cannon Ball".  The parlor cars at that time were heavyweights which previously served as Pullman Parlor Cars on PRR.

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Posted by henry6 on Friday, June 5, 2009 10:18 AM

Yes.  In fact in 1978 or 79 the Tri State Chapt. NRHS did a fan trip on the Sat. AM train with the Parlor Cars including the then LIRR owned former DL&W Phoebe Snow Tavern Lounges quite reconfigured (as I recall).  Train was regular Sat. morning train, not the Cannonball but had the parlors, and we left from NYP changing at Jamaica.

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Posted by KCSfan on Friday, June 5, 2009 10:34 AM

CSSHEGEWISCH

The LIRR "Cannon Ball" ran between Long Island City and Montauk on Fridays only, and may have been an all-parlor car consist.

The other would be the N&W "Wabash Cannon Ball" between Detroit and St. Louis, which ran until April 30, 1971 and had no first-class accomodations at the end.  It may have had a parlor car at earlier dates.

I was not aware of the LIRR having a train called the Cannon Ball. Was this an official name appearing in the timetable or a nickname given to the train?

The Det-StL Wabash Cannon Ball was one of the two that I had in mind. Throughout the 1950's it carried a brass railed open platform parlor/observation car complete with one drawing room. IIRC the car was owned and operated by the Pullman Co.

In a later reply Mike correctly identified the other train I had in mind, N&W's Cannon Ball, No's. 21 & 22 running between Norfolk and Petersburg. It carried a 10-6 New York - Norfolk sleeper and ran between Petersberg and Richmond as ACL No's. 20 & 29.  The train is shown as the Cannon Ball only in N&W timetables. No's, 20 & 29 are un-named trains in the ACL timetables.

As to the winner, It's almost a toss up but I think we should award it to Paul who in addition to getting the Wabash part correct also identified a third Cannon Ball, that of the LIRR.

Mark 

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Posted by wanswheel on Friday, June 5, 2009 10:42 AM
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Posted by henry6 on Friday, June 5, 2009 11:03 AM

Oh yes, the LIRR Cannonball was official and remains so unofficially.  Not named in today's timetables the Friday only 3:58PM eastbound is still referred to by fans and patrons as the Cannonball.  Back in its day, there were sections, too!  And while traditionally leaving from Long Island City Terminal (and traversing the Lower Montauk) there was one time when electric locomotives would haul it out of NYPenn to change at Jamaica for steam or diesel (not sure of the year or years).  The LIRR did use one word title rather than Cannon Ball.

 

Add the following I just found on the LIRR website under link to their newsletter (and do click on the link as it outlines the extra services and comforts offered):

Hamptons Service
Service to the Hamptons is about to get underway ... highlighted by our world-famous getaway, The Cannonball. Pick up one of our Montauk Branch timetables at the LIRR’s terminals, or go to Hamptons Service page.

 

 

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Posted by Train-O on Wednesday, June 10, 2009 8:30 AM

New York, New Haven and Conn. R.R.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Sunday, June 14, 2009 10:09 AM

New question:  The freight operation once operated by Chicago Rapid Transit/CTA on its North Side Main Line is pretty well known.  Which Class 1 carrier did CRT/CTA provide this service for and why?

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Posted by henry6 on Sunday, June 14, 2009 10:17 AM

I am interested in the answer to this one.  Wasn't it to compete with or compliment the Chicago Underground Railroad on LCL deliveries?.

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Posted by daveklepper on Monday, June 15, 2009 3:15 AM

I think it was provided for the CMStP&P, because part of the Northside el and the route through Evanston was a takeover of a Milwaukee branch, and the freight customers still required service, which was then logically provided by the Chicago El, the Chicago Rapid Transit.  I think this service continued into CTA days and may have outlived the North Shore.  Before the el used the line, there was at one time passenger service on it if memory is correct.   I recall the westernmost track haviing overhead wire south from Howard Street for these freight trains.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Monday, June 15, 2009 10:03 AM

daveklepper

I think it was provided for the CMStP&P, because part of the Northside el and the route through Evanston was a takeover of a Milwaukee branch, and the freight customers still required service, which was then logically provided by the Chicago El, the Chicago Rapid Transit.  I think this service continued into CTA days and may have outlived the North Shore.  Before the el used the line, there was at one time passenger service on it if memory is correct.   I recall the westernmost track haviing overhead wire south from Howard Street for these freight trains.

We have a winner, daveklepper is correct.  Northwestern Rapid Transit was building the North Side L and the St. Paul saw this as a way of no longer having to provide suburban on this line so it agreed to lease the line (at surface level) from north of Buena Ave. to Northwestern Rapid Transit, which was later absorbed into CRT/CTA.  The line was later raised on an embankment by CRT.  Freight service on the line was always minimal, serving a handful of coal yards and lumber yards.  It finally dried up completely in the mid-1970's.

daveklepper, your question.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 3:28 AM

Name the three North American cities that had two operators of PCC cars.  |f you can, explain the differences between the cars of the two properties in each case (optional).   In one of these cities and only one, a fan trip could be arranged to pose one property's PCC behind the other's, although I doubt this was ever done.   In which city would that have been logical and possible?

 

And (required) name the five North American cities that operated mu PCC cars, PCC cars in mu trains of two and/or three cars (as well as single cars).   Optionally, name a sixth operator that sometimes is thought of running mu PCC cars, and tell why it should NOT be included, even though a certain heritage operation has a pretence.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 10:12 AM

I'll start with these offers:

Two operators:  Cleveland (Cleveland Ry., Shaker Heights Rapid Transit); Los Angeles (Los Angeles Ry., Pacific Electric); Philadelphia (PTC, Red Arrow).

MU operators: Los Angeles, Cleveland, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago (the L).

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Posted by daveklepper on Wednesday, June 17, 2009 2:36 PM

Red Arrow never ran PCC cars.   Their postwar 1949 St. Louis-built double-end lightweights did have double-end end-door PCC bodies, practcialy identacle to cars built for MUNI (SF) and for another operator that sometimes people forget operated PCC cars since it was far better known for other distinctive prewar and postwar equipment.   But the Red Arrow cars were not PCC's.  They had outside frame drop equalizer MCB-style trucks, cam controls lacking automatic acceleration, and never had resilient wheels.   The only PCC features they had were the body and (I think, possibly), the magnetic track brakes.   No royalties were paid Transit Research for them, and this is the deciding factor.   That MUNI and Market St. Ry. Assn, (I'm a member) chose to honor them as PCC's by dressing up a genuine SF double-end PCC in Red Arrow paint does not change the truth of the matter.

I did not consider Chicago in my list of five mu operators because only the PCC rapid transit rebuilds were mu, the Green Hornets and prewar PCC's never were equipped for mu.  Counting Chicago, there were six mu car operators and one has survived, although the mu capability does not seem to be used in regular service, but it is maintained from what I understand.  Hint: One former mu (one line only) operator regularly runs PCC's in off-peak heritage service on one line mixed with much newer LRV;s, but their few remaining PCC's are not mu, nor were the majority of their once gigantic PCC fleet.   Railfans sometimes charter one of their few PCC's for fantrips.. 

So anyone who can add to the two lists with correct answers will win.  If not, you've got it.

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Posted by daveklepper on Friday, June 19, 2009 3:46 AM

Apparently, nobody can do better than Paul, so he gets to ask the next question.   But, fpr the record.  Three cities with two operators of PCC;s:  LA (right), Cleveland (right),  and

ST. LOUIS!  (missed that one).  

Los Angeles had Pacific Electric double-end mu standard gauge PCC's and Los Angelels Railways wide but narrow gauge single-end PCC's.   The PE PCC's operated on the Glendale Burbank line, which ran out of subway terminal and did not share any right-of-way with LAR.  Howere, PE and LAR did share some dual gauge street trackage, with common wire, and it would have been possible to arrange a fan trip to have one type of PCC behind the other.

Shaker Heights and Cleveland Transit both had single-end PCC's.  Shaker's were mu, both new and second hand from Twin Cities, which requried modification for mu.  At one  time there were track connections between the two systems, but not at the time they ran PCC''s, although for a while there was a double track crossing without connecting curves.

 St, Louis had regular single-end PCC's for its transit system, forget the name of the company (St. Louis Public Service?), but it was already owned by National City Lines by the time I rode its remaining four PCC lines.  Forgotten is the fact that Illinois Terminal also had ten mu double-end end-door-only PCC cars, used in local St, Louis -Granit City service, the very last IT passneger operation.   Track connection between the two systems would have been via the St. Louis Car Company factory and non-electrified steam railroad tracks and it would have been just about impossible to arrange a fan trip for the two types of cars together.

 

MU PCC streetcars were operated by Boston, which still runs them but not mu in regular service (probably will be mu in the future as ridership continues to rise, and that is the reason they have kept double the number of cars required for the rush hour service).   Did run three-car trains regularly.  Now air-conditioned and thoroughly rebuilt.

Shaker in trains up to four cars.  IT with occasional two-car trains.   Pacific Electric up to three cars in a train.

 

And Toronto, which ordered some mu PCC;s new and converted ex-Cleveland cars to mu for the heavy Bloor-Danforth line in two-car trains until replaced by a subway.  Later, two car trains were used on Queen Street until the articulated LRV's were put into service.   Still has two non-mu PCC;s in heritage service.   The Cleveland PCC;s had been ordered with all mu equipment except the actual couplers, because for a while the east-west Rapid was planned to be light rail like Shaker, that shares tracks from E-55 to the Public Terminal.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Friday, June 19, 2009 10:10 AM

Boston, Cleveland and Chicago all operated rapid transit equipment on which they paid royalties to the Transit Research Corp., which makes them PCC's despite their appearance.

And now for the question:  In 1980, South Shore ordered and took delivery on 10 GP38-2's which dieselized their freight service.  What locomotive was the last one to be ordered and delivered new to South Shore prior to the GP38-2's?

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Posted by KCSfan on Friday, June 19, 2009 11:29 AM

Would it be the electric "Little Joes". IIRC the CSS&SB received four of them with the remainder of the order going to the Milw Road.

Mark

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Friday, June 19, 2009 11:59 AM

Not quite, remember that the 20 Little Joes were ordered by the Russian State Railways.

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul

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