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News Wire: Ringling Bros. Blue Unit makes last revenue load out

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Posted by Brian Schmidt on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 8:48 AM

Brian Schmidt, Assistant Editor Trains magazine

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Posted by NareBNSF on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 8:59 AM

Will it go north on Norfolk Southern or will it go north on CSX? I need to know because I want to go see it. Thanks.

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Posted by MarknLisa on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 4:48 PM
Was just on the RBB&B website and.... Watch a live stream of the final show of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey®, in its entirety, live from NYCB Live, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Long Island, New York on Sunday, May 21 at 7:00 pm ET/4:00 pm PT. Exclusively on Ringling.com and broadcast on Facebook Live.
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Posted by BigJim on Wednesday, May 10, 2017 7:15 AM

Yesterday, May 9, 2017:

 

.

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Posted by Train Guy 3 on Sunday, May 14, 2017 2:55 AM

Great video of the train pulling up out of Roanoke. After 7 hours of delay I guess better late than never. Gave some great daylight shots to some people who the train might have otherwise past by in darkness. Should have put 1069 in the lead and maybe the delay could have been avoided.

TG3 LOOK ! LISTEN ! LIVE ! Remember the 3.

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Posted by pajrr on Sunday, May 14, 2017 4:17 AM

I went to see the Red Unit pass through northern NJ on the CSX River Line. Both trains passed through NJ on the same day and actually passed each other in Oak Island Yard. By the way, the Virginian unit was leading as the train passed through NJ. The train had reversed direction to enter the Lehigh Line.

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Posted by ROBERT WILLISON on Sunday, May 14, 2017 8:51 AM

Thanks for the video, great pictures, even better memories.

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Posted by pajrr on Sunday, May 14, 2017 3:52 PM

In a Circus Train flashback: The Circus came to NJ and had to use NJ Transit to reach the venue. This was during the Conrail era in the 80's. I was listening on the scanner as the Conrail crew called NJT dispatch for clearance. The NJT dispatcher replied "That's a roger, CLOWNRAIL!" One of those unforgettable railroad moments.

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Posted by wanswheel on Saturday, May 20, 2017 11:23 PM
RME
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Posted by RME on Sunday, May 21, 2017 4:17 AM

Be ready: today is the day of the last show.  (I believe it will still be streamed on ringling.com starting at 7:00 EDT, 6:00 Central.)

And I remember being so traumatized when the Ringling Bros. outfit merged with Barnum and Bailey, nearly as shocking to a boy as PRR merging with NYC.  Now both shows will be gone.

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Posted by RME on Sunday, May 21, 2017 4:29 AM

wanswheel
Nassau Coliseum where the Circus ends up stands at the old Mitchel Field.

With all those pictures of B25s, I think it may be important for Billy Mitchell fans to understand who the air base was named for, and why...

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Posted by wanswheel on Sunday, May 21, 2017 12:03 PM

RME

And I remember being so traumatized when the Ringling Bros. outfit merged with Barnum and Bailey

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=9E02E0DA1E39E13ABC4C52DFB5668382609EDE

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Posted by RME on Sunday, May 21, 2017 12:49 PM

Ye Gods!  It'd take more than two hands to handle that whopper!  What the hell circus merger is it that I remember???  (It gets worse ... I distinctly remember liking to sing 'Look For The Union Label' as a boy, before 1966 ... shades of that master prevaricator Al Gore!)

Certainly couldn't be Ringling with Barnum and Bailey as an acquisition; even my father wasn't around to be traumatized by that, judging by the evidence Mike has provided.  But I distinctly remember two competing shows being offered (and it wasn't the same show with 'Red' and 'Blue' the only difference), one of which had the Ringling name and the other the Barnum and Bailey name, and one of them 'went away' (with what I remember to be some fanfare) with only the combined show name surviving as 'the circus'.  Sometime in the Sixties.

This reminds me of the Eveready vs. Duracell wars.  I'd hate to find out that the Bosco and Cocoa Marsh people were in cahoots...

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Posted by Firelock76 on Sunday, May 21, 2017 1:47 PM

Here's where my luck for finding things paid off.

About ten years ago I found

RME
 
wanswheel
Nassau Coliseum where the Circus ends up stands at the old Mitchel Field.

 

With all those pictures of B25s, I think it may be important for Billy Mitchell fans to understand who the air base was named for, and why...

 

Here's a time when my luck for finding things paid off.  About ten years ago in a Phoenixville PA used bookshop I found a copy of General Billy Mitchell's book "Winged Defense."  Printed in the 1920's there were only 4,000 copys made.  Two years ago I gave it to my brother, an Air Force Academy graduate and man, was he thrilled to get it!  "Make a pot of coffee one night, relax, and have a nice chat with the general!" I told him.

Good book!  Was Billy right?  On just about everything, yes he was.

And looking a formal photographs of him all I can think of is "I'd KILL to have a command presence like that!"

Poor John Mitchel, he must have done some serious string-pulling to get himself into the Air Service at the age of 38, the cut-off age was 28.  What a shame.

Oh, and that "Castaways" film clip, (notice I didn't call it a "video") I'm struck by the fact I couldn't understand a damn thing they said fifty years ago, and I still can't!  And the go-go girl?  I can just hear it now, "Grandma, was that YOU?"

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Posted by RME on Sunday, May 21, 2017 3:01 PM

Firelock76
About ten years ago in a Phoenixville PA used bookshop I found a copy of General Billy Mitchell's book "Winged Defense." Printed in the 1920's there were only 4,000 copies made.

I almost hate to tell you that it's available on line and Dover reprinted it in 2006.

This is one of those books like Douhet's or Liscum Borden's that help you understand how air power developed.  Pity he was so disparaged in official circles at the time.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Sunday, May 21, 2017 4:13 PM

No problem RME, my brother's got the real thing, not something on line or a reprint.

Nothing wrong with on-line versions or reprints, but nothing compares to the original. 

It's true Billy was disparaged and ignored in his own time, but as Hap Arnold once said Billy didn't know when to back off.  Everything he wanted for the Air Force the Air Force eventually got, he sacrificed himself uselessly.

Young majors George Patton and Dwight Eisenhower pushed hard for a strong tank corps, but seeing the way things were going in the 1920's they backed off as well, albeit under the hint that their careers would be wrecked if they "Kept up all this nonsense about tanks!" Military conservatism didn't have all that much to do with it either, there just wasn't any money.  Both said "The hell with it!"  Patton went back to the cavalry and Eisenhower to the infantry. In the long run they were right too, and at least had the satisfaction of seeing what they wanted come to pass.

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Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, May 21, 2017 6:28 PM

Firelock76
No problem RME, my brother's got the real thing, not something on line or a reprint.

Nothing wrong with on-line versions or reprints, but nothing compares to the original. 

It's true Billy was disparaged and ignored in his own time, but as Hap Arnold once said Billy didn't know when to back off.  Everything he wanted for the Air Force the Air Force eventually got, he sacrificed himself uselessly.

Young majors George Patton and Dwight Eisenhower pushed hard for a strong tank corps, but seeing the way things were going in the 1920's they backed off as well, albeit under the hint that their careers would be wrecked if they "Kept up all this nonsense about tanks!" Military conservatism didn't have all that much to do with it either, there just wasn't any money.  Both said "The hell with it!"  Patton went back to the cavalry and Eisenhower to the infantry. In the long run they were right too, and at least had the satisfaction of seeing what they wanted come to pass.

Remember, the top ranks of the military always want to win the last war 'better', they rarely have the foresight to invision what the 'next war' will look like and what sorts of munitions and strategys will be required in it.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

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Posted by Firelock76 on Sunday, May 21, 2017 6:35 PM

Right you are Balt, and I'd add a corollary to that.  Politicians always try to prevent the last war, if you see what I mean, hence the various Neutrality Acts passed in the 1930's when Fascism was on the rise in Europe. But I have to be fair.  No-one I know of has ever been issued a crystal ball when placed in a position of responsibility, and I'm very reluctant to engage in Monday morning quarterbacking.

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Posted by wanswheel on Monday, May 22, 2017 1:43 AM

RME

Thanks! 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Monday, May 22, 2017 8:02 AM

The obviously posed pictures of the various gunners may be B-25's and not B-17's (or B-24's) but may dad (and Bob Withorn's dad) would be laughing hysterically at pictures of gunners with no goggles, oxygen masks or heated flying suits.

Billy Mitchell was an overenthusiastic advocate of the absolute superiority of air power over any armed forces that operated on the earth's surface.  He went so far as stating that naval surface ships were obsolete and defense of our coastlines could be assumed by air power only.  I don't know if he was aware of Douhet's theories but he seemed to have similar beliefs.  He might have been more effective if he was more realistic.

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Posted by RME on Monday, May 22, 2017 11:47 AM

CSSHEGEWISCH
He went so far as stating that naval surface ships were obsolete and defense of our coastlines could be assumed by air power only. I don't know if he was aware of Douhet's theories but he seemed to have similar beliefs. He might have been more effective if he was more realistic.

Douhet was writing as early as 1911, but did not publish his main study until 1921 (and I don't think it was translated into English until much later; my copy is circa 1943 and says the work is not well known).  Apparently Mitchell did not meet Douhet during his European visits in 1922, but did in 1927 (well after the publication, promotion, and commercial 'non-success' of the Putnams book, 1925)

Both Douhet and Mitchell suffered from ill recognition of a major factor in aerial force in either strategic or tactical sense: the material limitations on deliverable weaponry.  That is one reason for the concentration on biological/radiological deliverables in the 1930s, and for the ultimate reliance on massive incendiary assist and 'thousand-plane raids' toward the inhuman end of the war.

I think William Liscum Borden was the first person to figure out the 'two halves' of strategic air power: very fast or long-loiter delivery systems combined with nuclear or similarly highly-effective weapons.  Anyone interested in the evolution of mutual assured deterrence needs to read his book, even if his remarkable success in getting his ideas 'into practice' was related to who he knew and what positions he got into.

Naval surface ships were demonstrated obsolete even before the nuclear era: the Yamato and Musashi are perhaps the most poignant examples, and the Japanese losses at the Battle of Midway show the same for conventional carriers.  The current American naval strategy is still extended defense-in-depth combined with a nuclear response to any nuclear action against a naval vessel or facility; this is not exactly proof of non-obsolescence for conventional ships in a theatre where the enemy has effective air superiority even for limited times.  Modern weaponry further extends the situation, not particularly in favor of ships (for very long) during unrestricted war.  You might turn to evade high-level bombing, perhaps even counteract PGM to an extent (usually with force majeure like Phalanx) but against Thor... say hello to Davy Jones very quick, while you still can.

A very substantial part of Mitchell's 'problems' were due to his personality, habits, and character, according to one biography of him I have read.  It is fun to look at him as a visionary of air power crying in the wilderness to fuddy-duddies who 'would not see' and killed his career to keep from it.  He was even right, in a way, up through the WS-110/B-70 ... and became essentially wrong at just about the time that weapon system became functionally obsolete.  But I have more than a suspicion he was more than a little the Euclid of his era.

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