Classic trains photos from the Denver Public Library

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Classic trains photos from the Denver Public Library
Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 4:45 AM

 Denver Public Library has tons of classic trains photos uploaded to their digital collection ( https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/ ). Check out if you want to pass the time.

 Train Second #24, Grand Canyon Limited; 11 cars, 37 MPH. Photographed: near Belen, N.M., September 3, 1946.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/59335/rec/106

 Train #111, City of Denver, 11 cars. Photographed: near Denver, Colo., 1951.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/67585/rec/9

 Train #103, City of Los Angeles; 9 cars, 25 MPH. Photographed: leaving Cheyenne, Wyo., March 7, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/60688/rec/37

 Train #101, City of San Francisco; 20 cars. Photographed: near Granite Canon, Wyo., June 15, 1952.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/60667/rec/34

 Train #19, National Parks Special, streamlined steam engine; 7 cars, 20 MPH. Photographed: in Denver, Colo., July 7, 1940.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/56961

 Train #7, Fast Mail Express; streamlined; 9 cars, 45 MPH. Photographed:  west of Syracuse, Kan., February 9, 1941.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/59075/rec/92

 Train #2, The Pacemaker, streamlined engine; 8 cars. Photographed: leaving Chicago, Ill., August 10, 1939.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/61818/rec/107

 Train #6, Fast Flying Virginian. Photographed: at Montgomery, W. Va. station, June 27, 1950.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/48085/rec/6

 

Train #46, The Tennessean; 10 cars, 70 MPH, good smoke effect. Photographed:  near Salem, Va., July 11, 1953.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/65122/rec/19

 

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Posted by M636C on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 5:41 AM

 

 Train #111, City of Denver, 11 cars. Photographed: near Denver, Colo., 1951.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/67585/rec/9

 Train #103, City of Los Angeles; 9 cars, 25 MPH. Photographed: leaving Cheyenne, Wyo., March 7, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/60688/rec/37

The second of these photos is just an example of how important Otto Perry's photographs are to all of us now. There is another photo showing the same train in Cheyenne station a few minutes earlier, which is used as an illustration in the Wikipedia entry for the M-10002 train.

The second unit is the B-unit from the fourth spare City of Denver power set coupled to the M10002 cab unit. I say coupled, but in fact the two units were articulated, the two units resting on a span bolster linking the two trucks. So these two were put together in a big, well equipped workshop. The only reason for this pairing would seem to be that M-10002 B and M-10003A were unserviceable at the same time, and someone suggest this ungainly solution to getting the train on the road

I understand that Otto Perry was a postman with the US Postal Service in Denver and was able to get out and photograph trains around Denver, but as an enthusiast travelled all over the USA and in the 1930s, to Europe.

However in 1917, Otto spent what appears to have been a single day in Beijing, China and visited the North station which served trains to the Great Wall.He was able to photograph a fairly new Alco 2-8-0 and an older Chinese built 2-6-0

I assume that he was with the US Armed services at this time, but I'd be grateful if any light could be shone on this visit.

Peter

 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 7:49 AM

Thank you for the additional information, Peter. 

Some rare encounters from the Otto Perry collection:

Train #112, City of Denver; doubleheading with M-10005, 10 carts, 20 MPH. Photographed:  leaving Denver, Colo., January 24, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/60684/rec/29

Train #111, City of Denver; doubleheading with M-10005, 11 cars, 70 MPH. Photographed:  Dupont, Colo., January 17, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/60657/rec/8

Train #40, Exposition Flyer, 11 cars. Photographed: east of Derby, Colo., July 14, 1940.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/62422/rec/16

Train #10, Denver Zephyr; 10 cars, 65 MPH, locomotive "Aeolus". Photographed: east of Derby, Colo., February 26, 1938.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/46102/rec/24

Train #2, The Abraham Lincoln; 9 cars; 35 MPH; locomotive "Lady Baltimore". Photographed: leaving St. Louis, Mo., September 24, 1935.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/57966/rec/202

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 8:27 AM

Thanks Mr. Jones!

Oh yeah, in the old days Denver was a hot railroad town, and the photos reflect that.

I'm guessing the "Pacemaker," the "Fast Flying Virginian," and the "Tennessean" must have made a wrong turn somewhere if they wound up in Denver.   Whistling

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 9:19 AM

Wayne, I don't have access to PM but look on the MR forum at the Hasegawa rail mortar project -- your input will be valuable.

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Posted by daveklepper on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 9:33 AM

Thanks for the efforts required to post these fine pictures.

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 11:41 AM

Jones1945

Train #2, The Abraham Lincoln; 9 cars; 35 MPH; locomotive "Lady Baltimore". Photographed: leaving St. Louis, Mo., September 24, 1935.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/57966/rec/202

Wondering what sort of testing is taking place with the 'box' on the engineer's side of the pilot on the Lady Baltimore?

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 11:53 AM

BaltACD
Wondering what sort of testing is taking place with the 'box' on the engineer's side of the pilot on the Lady Baltimore?

Indicated testing, likely of something related to average cylinder pressure or compression.  See the (probably) well insulated hose across the cylinder jacket and its point of connection.  One to the forward side of that piston could be taken through the cylinder head, which is right behind that shelter as built.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 11:54 AM

Overmod

Wayne, I don't have access to PM but look on the MR forum at the Hasegawa rail mortar project -- your input will be valuable.

 

It's done, and I even found a video everyone should find interesting!  

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 4:30 PM
Posted by M636C on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 5:41 AM

I understand that Otto Perry was a postman with the US Postal Service in Denver and was able to get out and photograph trains around Denver, but as an enthusiast travelled all over the USA and in the 1930s, to Europe.

However in 1917, Otto spent what appears to have been a single day in Beijing, China and visited the North station which served trains to the Great Wall.He was able to photograph a fairly new Alco 2-8-0 and an older Chinese built 2-6-0

I assume that he was with the US Armed services at this time, but I'd be grateful if any light could be shone on this visit.

Peter

This shines no light on that but Otto Perry's bio at Denver Library says he was in the army https://history.denverlibrary.org/colorado-biographies/otto-perry-1894-1970
while a paragraph in The Postal Record sort of says he was in the navy.
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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 9:06 PM

I am really grateful that Otto Perry has taken some of the earliest photos of PRR Trail Blazer. The train was still short enough to be handled by a single K4s. The consist can be as long as 14 cars in its heyday.

Train #77, The Trail Blazer; engine equipped with smoke deflectors; 8 cars. Photographed: in Chicago, Ill., August 10, 1939.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/86783

Train #76, The Trail Blazer; 9 cars, 37 MPH. Photographed: leaving Chicago, Ill., July 25, 1940.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/86561

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Posted by MidlandMike on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 9:58 PM

I have spent many an hour on the DPL photo site, mainly for Colorado narrow gauge and the Colorado Midland.

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Posted by M636C on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 10:17 PM
This shines no light on that but Otto Perry's bio at Denver Library says he was in the army https://history.denverlibrary.org/colorado-biographies/otto-perry-1894-1970
while a paragraph in The Postal Record sort of says he was in the navy.
 
Having checked both of the references, I'd prefer to trust the "Postal Record" which presumably received the information from Otto himself.
 
The Navy is certainly more likely to have taken him to China, although the Postal Record suggests that he was involved in Atlantic Convoys. It is possible that he was posted to the Pacific Fleet after the armistice and made one trip to China. The USA was certainly involved in the Russian Civil War and a ship may well have visited China before returning to the USA.
 
Beijing is a long way from the coast, however.
 
I guess Otto could have been in the Marines, which might explain the confusion in the Museum records.
Either way, it seems that a trip to Beijing was arranged. This was almost certainly not by train, or we would have photos of those trains too.
 
Importantly he made it back to Denver to cover a very important period in rail history.
 
Peter
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Posted by M636C on Thursday, August 13, 2020 1:17 AM

It occurs to me that we can now illustrate the O-7 and O-8 classes of GN Mikado...

O-7 3394 in 1931 with the 2-6-8-0 boiler

3398 with an O-8 boiler in 1938...

Peter

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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, August 13, 2020 5:10 AM

I was warmed by the Trail Blazer photo, with a K4 bereft of streamlining.  By the time I got to ride the Trail Blazer, 1952, I rode behind a T-1.  Interesting though that both in 1940, time of the photo, and 1952, the schedule was, if memory is correct, 17 hours.  And the Broadway was 16, also in steam west of Harrisburg.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, August 13, 2020 12:14 PM

daveklepper

I was warmed by the Trail Blazer photo, with a K4 bereft of streamlining.  By the time I got to ride the Trail Blazer, 1952, I rode behind a T-1.  Interesting though that both in 1940, time of the photo, and 1952, the schedule was, if memory is correct, 17 hours.  And the Broadway was 16, also in steam west of Harrisburg.

 
I envy you, Dave! PRR T1 hauling the Trail Blazer was one of the best things ever happened. The TrailBlazer was re-equipped in 1948 so I bet you were riding on the 44-seat  P85b coach. I heard that they were roomy and the ride was smooth.  
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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, August 13, 2020 2:49 PM

I have commented earlier that the PRR post-WWII 44-seat coaches were one of the two very most comfortable overnight coaches I ever experienced, the only equal being the El-Cap hi-levels, also used on the SF Chief.  UP's were almost as good, and when PRR's rusted-out, PC bought some from UP.

My overnight coach NY - Detroit trips were on the Red Arrow, not the faster Wolverine, accordingly.  For daytime travel, the Empire State Express was fine.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, August 13, 2020 4:56 PM

Thanks for that, Dave. How about pre-war betterment coaches like the P70kr and P70ksr? I note they were using the original 2D-P5 truck equipped with roller bearing journal boxes. Some of them were still in use until the 1970s. Have you ever ridden on them and how was the riding quality? 

Coach 4301. Photographed: at Chicago, Ill., July 25, 1940.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/62278/rec/67

Baggage-chair car 8321. Photographed: at Chicago, Ill., July 25, 1950 (Must be a typo, It should be 1940. A betterment Baggage-lounge car)

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/62275/rec/63

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Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, August 13, 2020 8:13 PM

In addition to the Denver Library - the Barringer Collection is worth one's time

https://www.flickr.com/photos/barrigerlibrary/albums/

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Posted by M636C on Thursday, August 13, 2020 8:36 PM

I am disappointed that only 10000 of the 20800 images are actually available.

These are presumably the "best' pictorially of the photographs.

Strangely, one photograph from Switzerland, two from Italy and one from France are able to be found through the "location selector" on the left hand side of the search screen.

I wonder why all the images are no longer available?

Peter

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 14, 2020 3:22 AM

BaltACD

In addition to the Denver Library - the Barringer Collection is worth one's time

https://www.flickr.com/photos/barrigerlibrary/albums/ 

Thank you for the link! I found a "new old pic" of PRR S1 #6100, very nice!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/barrigerlibrary/49102575172/in/album-72157640554237773/

I wish all these websites would keep uploading every single photo they got.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 14, 2020 9:51 AM

 

Train #19, The Chief; engine equipped with experimental smoke lifter; 13 cars, 35 MPH. Photographed:  east of La Junta, Colo., February 27, 1938.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/59073/rec/273

Idea Santa Fe 3460 Class Hudson with a strange-looking "skyline". 

 

Second #76, The Lark; 5 MPH. Photographed:  arriving at San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 26, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/54463/rec/29

Idea Two SP 2-10-2 doubleheading for a passenger train.

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Posted by rcdrye on Friday, August 14, 2020 10:31 AM

SP routinely used 2-10-2s on Cuesta grade north of San Luis Obispo, sometimes doubleheading with the regular road power between SLO or Paso Robles, sometimes swapping out the road power.  Except for Cuesta  and some hills just north of LA the Coast route is pretty flat.

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Posted by BaltACD on Saturday, August 15, 2020 6:12 PM

Jones1945

 

Second #76, The Lark; 5 MPH. Photographed:  arriving at San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 26, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/54463/rec/29

Idea Two SP 2-10-2 doubleheading for a passenger train.

And a lot of brake smoke from the train.....

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Posted by rcdrye on Saturday, August 15, 2020 8:42 PM

Eastbound (southbound), Cuesta drops quite hard into the basin where San Luis Obispo sits.  Back in the early 1970s when SP SDP45s were still assigned to Coast Line trains you could see a lot of heat going up from the dynamic brake grids, and the brake shoes still took a beating.

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Posted by BaltACD on Saturday, August 15, 2020 10:46 PM

rcdrye
Eastbound (southbound), Cuesta drops quite hard into the basin where San Luis Obispo sits.  Back in the early 1970s when SP SDP45s were still assigned to Coast Line trains you could see a lot of heat going up from the dynamic brake grids, and the brake shoes still took a beating.

Back in the days before effective dynamic braking was the prefered method - trains descending grades were bathed in brake smoke - steel brake shoes compressed against steel wheels that all had a 'sheen' of oil (from overfilled journal boxes, many with faulty axle seals) as well as trains operating in the territory that didn't require brakeing and oil pickup from the top of the rail, many with retainers set to keep some car's brakes continuously applied - even when the brake valve was in 'Release'.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Sunday, August 16, 2020 6:48 AM

Thank you rcdrye and Balt for the observation and additional information that added so much value to the post!

More pics were taken at San Luis Obispo:

 First #99, The Daylight. Photographed: San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 23, 1938.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/54451/rec/7

Idea The pic is perfect if that is my favorite SP 4-10-2 instead of a 2-10-2. 

 Second #99, Daylight; 30 MPH. Photographed:  San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 23, 1938.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/54464/rec/33

Idea The second section of Coast Daylight, note the heavyweight equipment. 

Three-quarter view of right side of engine, from front end. Photographed: San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 23, 1938.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/53787/rec/10

Idea The GS-3 is my favorite GS Class. Problem-free, powerful, and colorful. The streamlining really hit the spot. The single-headlight sliver smokebox was simple and elegant, it stands out under bright "daylight"! 

Train #99, Daylight; 13 cars. Photographed: San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 26, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/54026/rec/27

Chair car 2425, lettered "The Challenger". Photographed: San Luis  Obispo, Cal., July 26, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/53860/rec/19

Idea Prewar Pullman streamlined coaches equipped with the short-lived Pullman 43-R truck. 

"Daylight" parlor observation car 2950. Photographed: San Luis Obispo, Cal., July 26, 1937.

https://digital.denverlibrary.org/digital/collection/p15330coll22/id/53878/rec/21

 

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Posted by M636C on Sunday, August 16, 2020 10:23 AM

There are some very nice shots of the Daylights in both directions on Cuesta grade here:

https://spdaylight.net/Service.html

You need to scroll down quite a long way. Of course you might get distracted on the way....  isn't Kodachrome wonderful!

Peter

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, August 16, 2020 10:59 AM

BaltACD
... trains descending grades were bathed in brake smoke - steel brake shoes compressed against steel wheels that all had a 'sheen' of oil (from overfilled journal boxes, many with faulty axle seals) as well as [from] trains operating in the territory that didn't require braking and oil pickup from the top of the rail,

It had not occurred to me to wonder about this as a major component of brake smoke in earlier days!  My whole experience has been with composite or composition shoes of some type, on mostly roller-bearing equipment... but even there, I'd expect the contribution of curve greasers (which surely belong in your list) would contribute some 'blue' to the view.

Incidentally the shoes are not steel, they are cast iron, intentionally softer (so as not to wear the hardened wheel tread and fillet, sacrificially wearing instead and ablating some heat in so doing) but not so soft as to hold abrasive contaminants (as one of the earlier 'matrix' composite shoe faces might do).

What was notable about earlier braking, particularly on passenger trains, were the sparks that went along with the smoke.  There was a spectacular Steinheimer photograph, shot as a time exposure so the train was a horizontal streak of speed, that was published in Trains --I think in the early '70s -- along with a poem.  This showed the sparks dramatically and deserves to be seen.

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, August 16, 2020 11:17 AM

Jones1945
Prewar Pullman streamlined coaches equipped with the short-lived Pullman 43-R truck. 

John Keil seems to have thought that the SP version of this was different 'enough' from the Pullman 43-R that he advertised his (stunningly excellent) O scale version separately.  (He called them, endearingly, 'Napolean' Hat trucks...)

I remain somewhat awestruck that a high-speed service would preferentially use plain bearings, Isothermos or otherwise, in an otherwise modern truck of this design...

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