Why did the railroads stop cattle trains?

35582 views
73 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    December, 2009
  • 276 posts
Why did the railroads stop cattle trains?
Posted by Thomas 9011 on Monday, May 30, 2011 2:32 AM

I always wondered why the railroads stopped moving animals in cattle cars. I can understand the long distances would be a problem but I can't see how moving a cow by train say 60 miles or 100 miles is any different then a truck doing it? Anyone know what year they stopped?

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 16,610 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Monday, May 30, 2011 6:52 AM

Last cattle I recall my carrier handling was in the middle 70's.  What changed was not the carriers problems in hauling livestock, but the distribution logistics of the meat industry. 

To have 'fresh' meat in 'the good old days', the animal had to be slaughtered and butchered in near proximity to where it was going to be processed and sold.  With the improvements in refrigeration, packaging and transportation it became more economical for meat processors to handle the livestock at a limited number of processing factories and ship the finished (or near finished) product to market, rather than the 'raw material'.

  • Member since
    January, 2001
  • From: Atlanta
  • 11,477 posts
Posted by oltmannd on Monday, May 30, 2011 7:03 AM

The last cattle Conrail handled was for Kosher butchers in Phila and North Jersey.  It moved on the head end of intermodal trains so that it could get from Chicago in less than 25 hours and not need a watering stop.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

  • Member since
    September, 2002
  • 6,808 posts
Posted by ndbprr on Monday, May 30, 2011 7:04 AM

The railroads were probably thrilled to see them go also.  Animals got better treatment then people in some respects.  It was against the law for an animal to travel more than 24 hours without being let out of the car for food and watering.  Logistic nightmares for dispatchers.

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • 8,156 posts
Posted by henry6 on Monday, May 30, 2011 7:34 AM

The whole food industry changed, not railroading in this instance.  Freezing and faster transportation meant that the slaughtering/processing could be done and a finished product be shipped either by rail or truck.  So, now whole animals need not be shipped thousands of miles but the frozen or refrigerated meat...faster and cheaper.  Rails no longer needed in this instance. 

BTW, animals are often shipped by truck for processing but it is in smaller herds than the old cattle drives,usually just from farm to slaughter house.

 

RIDEWITHMEHENRY is the name for our almost monthly day of riding trains and transit in either the NYCity or Philadelphia areas including all commuter lines, Amtrak, subways, light rail and trolleys, bus and ferries when warranted. No fees, just let us know you want to join the ride and pay your fares. Ask to be on our email list or find us on FB as RIDEWITHMEHENRY (all caps) to get descriptions of each outing.

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 2,445 posts
Posted by PNWRMNM on Monday, May 30, 2011 8:49 AM

Thomas,

Trucks have much lower terminal costs than rail which gives them a tremendous advantage in the short haul 60-100 mile moves you suggest.  Truck will deliver in that range in an hour or two.  Rail likely to be a day or two. 

To the best of my knowledge relatively little cattle moved in trainload volumes.  It was mostly a carload business with all of the handling that characterizes that type of traffic.

As a matter of fact the last rail moves of livestock were long haul, where there were lots of miles to absorb the terminal costs.

Mac

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: New York, NY
  • 330 posts
Posted by MerrilyWeRollAlong on Monday, May 30, 2011 10:09 AM

It's probably for the better that railroads don't ship cattle anymore.  If NIMBYs are getting upset up about "smelly" garbage in sealed containers passing through their neighborhoods on trains, imagine what they would say about livestock trains with openings that let the aroma of animal business waffe out of the cars. Smile

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 2,445 posts
Posted by PNWRMNM on Monday, May 30, 2011 11:17 AM

The folks in cattle country are smart enough to know it is just the smell of money.

Mac

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 16,610 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Monday, May 30, 2011 12:36 PM

As I recall....there was a section on the Livestock Bill of Lading where the shipper could authorize a 36 Hour FWR (Feed, Water, Rest) provision.  Carriers that were active in the Livestock pipe line had their own stockyards at stragegic locations in order to comply with the legal requirements of transporting livestock.

oltmannd

The last cattle Conrail handled was for Kosher butchers in Phila and North Jersey.  It moved on the head end of intermodal trains so that it could get from Chicago in less than 25 hours and not need a watering stop.

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • 8,156 posts
Posted by henry6 on Monday, May 30, 2011 5:21 PM

Yes, livestock needed to be taken off the train for exercise, watering, feed, etc. every so often.  The Erie, for instance, had a stockyard stop at Campville, NY, about 5 miles east of Owego and 20 miles west of Binghamton before hauling the pigs and cattle to Secaucus, NJ and environs for the Metropolitan crowd's pork chops and succulent steak!

RIDEWITHMEHENRY is the name for our almost monthly day of riding trains and transit in either the NYCity or Philadelphia areas including all commuter lines, Amtrak, subways, light rail and trolleys, bus and ferries when warranted. No fees, just let us know you want to join the ride and pay your fares. Ask to be on our email list or find us on FB as RIDEWITHMEHENRY (all caps) to get descriptions of each outing.

  • Member since
    June, 2003
  • From: South Central,Ks
  • 6,358 posts
Posted by samfp1943 on Monday, May 30, 2011 6:03 PM

Here is a link to some photos of UPRR's last stock cars:

http://cssfreight.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=2354156

   These cars were conversions to triple decker hog-hauling service.

    Their reporting mark was, of course, HOGX

     If I remember the story about this service and when it ended, someone at UP had the thought that UP ought to try and take back fome of the stock hauling business out of Nebraska, they found a buyer for the on-the-hoof hogs at Farmer John's Meats in the Los Angeles area. This service took place some time in the 1980's to 1990's (early '90's(?).   Apparently this hog service lasted for some time, whereClougherty Packing Company was the receiver.  Farmer John's Meats was one of the last receivers of live hogs by rail in LA.

    The cars were run on trains in expedited service categories, that insured a time schedule that would fulfill all the appropriate government rules pertaining to the hauling of live-stock by rail.

   I would bet that if our retired UP  car guru [Carl Shaver} is looking he could fill in the information gaps on this subject. Who originally made the former auto parts cars and who and when they were converted those to haul livestock; not to mention how long this service lasted and why it was terminated(?).

  Found a link referencing the Hog Cars, and their handling on Trainorders.com.:

http://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?1,2094359

scroll down to the post by :UPNW2-1083

he even posts a couple of photos, as do several other posters. Lots of anecdotes  in the Trainorders link.

 

 

Sam

 

 


 

  • Member since
    December, 2005
  • From: Cardiff, CA
  • 2,930 posts
Posted by erikem on Monday, May 30, 2011 6:06 PM

BaltACD

As I recall....there was a section on the Livestock Bill of Lading where the shipper could authorize a 36 Hour FWR (Feed, Water, Rest) provision.  Carriers that were active in the Livestock pipe line had their own stockyards at stragegic locations in order to comply with the legal requirements of transporting livestock.

 

Somewhere about 1960, the UP was running an expedited cattle train between Salt Lake City are and LA. The idea was to get the cars to LA before the 36 hour limit hit, so the cattle would not have to be taken off en route. These trains were given a 60 MPH speed limit in contrast to the 50 MPH limit for most other freights.

The Super C was regularly doing Chicago-LA in 37 to 38 hours, so it would have been possible (that's possible, not necessarily practical or economic) to run a cattle train from Kansas to So Cal without FWR.

- Erik

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 79 posts
Posted by ROSBORNE68 on Monday, May 30, 2011 6:24 PM

You failed to mention PETA.  PETA would have a field day if animals were still moved in live stock cars.

King, NC.

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Northern New York
  • 19,406 posts
Posted by tree68 on Monday, May 30, 2011 6:28 PM

PNWRMNM

The folks in cattle country are smart enough to know it is just the smell of money.

Mac

Alas, people who have money and want to build a house "out in the country" rarely see it that way, even though the farm was there long before they built the house... 

[aside]Some years ago the NY state firematics drills were held near me.  One of my son's friends was at first puzzled by the sounds emanating from some of the Long Island fire vehicles that passed their house on a state highway.  They finally figured out that it was the firefighters, reacting to the sight of real cows in fields along the road.

"Mooooooooo!"

[/aside]

LarryWhistling
Resident Microferroequinologist (at least at my house) 
Everyone goes home; Safety begins with you
My Opinion. Standard Disclaimers Apply. No Expiration Date
Come ride the rails with me!
There's one thing about humility - the moment you think you've got it, you've lost it...

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 9,541 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Monday, May 30, 2011 8:50 PM

I believe among the last western moves were in the late 1960's - early 1970's.  From time to time there'd be a photo in Trains of the last ones on the D&RGW narrow-gauge, and the UP in Idaho - at the Harriman Ranch perhaps -  complete with cowboys on horses, wooden cattle pens and loading chutes, etc.  Those were more in the nature of moves from winter corrals to summer pastures or vice-versa, not long-haul to market. 

I was under the impression that the requirement to Feed, Water, Rest (exercise) the critters was at 24-hour intervals, not 36, but I can't support that belief with any citation.

One of the Kalmbach books - I believe it is John Armstrong's Track Planning for Realistic Operation - has a photo of a double-deck car of hogs going past an "F"-shaped standpipe, with each of the two spouts discharging a solid stream of water - one at each level - to cool them off. 

- Paul North. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)
  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 16,610 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 11:37 AM

The 'standard' Livestock Bill of Lading contained all the provisions of the 24 hour FWR requirements, however there was a 'optional' clause on the BoL that the shipper could execute that extended the FWR requirements...I don't know if there was a additional charge or discount for executing the optional clause; as executing the option would provide the shipper/consignee quicker service but would also permit the carriers to utilize fewer resources in completing the contract.

Paul_D_North_Jr

I was under the impression that the requirement to Feed, Water, Rest (exercise) the critters was at 24-hour intervals, not 36, but I can't support that belief with any citation.

- Paul North. 

Livestock Bill of Lading from the 19th Century

http://www.sacramentohistory.org/admin/photo/1018_1991.pdf

  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Central Iowa
  • 4,825 posts
Posted by jeffhergert on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 12:39 PM

I think the time interval was 28 hours.  A waiver could be signed to extend it to 36 hrs, but I'm not sure it applied to all types of livestock.  For some reason I'm thinking it only applied to hogs.

Jeff  

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • 1,406 posts
Posted by Victrola1 on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 2:19 PM

Why pay to ship guts and hooves. Process the raw material closer to the source. 

The meat packing industry decentralized in the middle of the last century. Carl Sandburg's "Hog butcher of the world" surrendered that title to many smaller plants around the country. Trucks played a role in the change. All roads no longer lead to Chicago, Omaha, nor other major rail junctions. Trucks created a straight line between farmer and processor.

 

 

 

  • Member since
    January, 2001
  • From: Atlanta
  • 11,477 posts
Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 2:37 PM

Victrola1

Why pay to ship guts and hooves. 

What!  No hot dogs?

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 933 posts
Posted by NKP guy on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 5:10 PM

As someone who lived but a very few feet from the NKP from 1951-60, I saw many stock cars on trains up close.  I'm a meat eater, not a PETA member, etc., and I can appreciate a good pun or joke as much as the next guy.

But that said, it would break your hearts to see and smell stock cars on a train.  Cattle, pigs, even sheep make the most woeful, frightened sounds in stock cars.  In the winter their fur would be coated in thick ice; frequently they fell down and broke legs, etc.  Now I read (above) that they were expected to go without water or food for 24 to 36 hours, before being off-loaded and slaughtered.  I remember as a (meat-eating) boy feeling very, very sorry for them, particularly when a train would stop for a signal and I could see their faces and eyes peering in terror from between the slats of the cars. The smell was nearly as memorable.

I don't miss these stock cars; I can only hope their truck journeys to today's slaughterhouses are at least shorter. 

 

 

  • Member since
    May, 2015
  • 5,089 posts
Posted by ericsp on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 10:44 PM

There is a tankcar and a passenger car on the Farmer John spur. They must ship out tallow by rail. Perhaps they ship pigs in passenger car now. "Porter, is my sty ready?"

"No soup for you!" - Yev Kassem (from Seinfeld)

  • Member since
    August, 2003
  • From: Antioch, IL
  • 3,741 posts
Posted by greyhounds on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 10:53 PM

BaltACD

The 'standard' Livestock Bill of Lading contained all the provisions of the 24 hour FWR requirements, however there was a 'optional' clause on the BoL that the shipper could execute that extended the FWR requirements...I don't know if there was a additional charge or discount for executing the optional clause; as executing the option would provide the shipper/consignee quicker service but would also permit the carriers to utilize fewer resources in completing the contract.

 Paul_D_North_Jr:

I was under the impression that the requirement to Feed, Water, Rest (exercise) the critters was at 24-hour intervals, not 36, but I can't support that belief with any citation.

- Paul North. 

 

Livestock Bill of Lading from the 19th Century

http://www.sacramentohistory.org/admin/photo/1018_1991.pdf

It was required to let the livestock out of the cars for access to feed and water every 24 hours (or less).  The 36 hour exception applied when the stock would reach the final destination within 36 hours of the last feed and water.  The railroad didn't have to stop and let the stock out if it was only going to move them less than 12 hours further down the line.

It wasn't up to the shipper.  It was a Federal law.  Access to feed and water every 24 hours is adequate for livestock.   These Federal rules only applied to rail and water transport.  They did not apply to truck transport.  While most truck moves may have been short, some took days and the critters just stayed in the trailer without food or water.  That just got changed (I think.).

It is almost impossible to habituate livestock to transportation.   A bovine meat critter may get two trips in its life - so they're not used to it.  If they get upset it's not a big deal.  I'll get upset tormorrow morning driving I94 on my way to work.

A wise old railroad man (Al Watkins) once told me that the two most difficult things to transport were 1) Livestock and, 2) Ice Cream.  It'a best to minimize the transport requirements for livestock.  And that's largely what's been done.  Through free market economics, I might add.   Or, "What's good for the steer is good for the country."

 

"By many measures, the U.S. freight rail system is the safest, most efficient and cost effective in the world." - Federal Railroad Administration, October, 2009. I'm just your average, everyday, uncivilized howling "anti-government" critic of mass government expenditures for "High Speed Rail" in the US. And I'm gosh darn proud of that.
  • Member since
    May, 2015
  • 5,089 posts
Posted by ericsp on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 11:46 PM

It looks like the tankcars are for the neighboring industry.

"No soup for you!" - Yev Kassem (from Seinfeld)

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 9,541 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 10:33 AM

greyhounds
  [snipped; emphasis added - PDN]  It is almost impossible to habituate livestock to transportation.   A bovine meat critter may get two trips in its life - so they're not used to it.  If they get upset it's not a big deal.  I'll get upset tormorrow morning driving I94 on my way to work.

A wise old railroad man (Al Watkins) once told me that the two most difficult things to transport were 1) Livestock and, 2) Ice Cream.  It'a best to minimize the transport requirements for livestock.  And that's largely what's been done.  Through free market economics, I might add.   Or, "What's good for the steer is good for the country."  

  That all makes sense, and research and experimentation in recent years has done a lot to minimize the 'upset' to the animals through transportation and the processing plants, which results in better weights, and/ or less loss and injury through panic, more stable production rates, etc.  That translates into real dollars, which some businesses have realized, adopted, and benefitted from once they've been educated - also through free market economics ! (not PETA)  See generally the work since 1975 of Dr. Temple Grandin* of Colorado State University and Grandin Livestock Handling Systems, Inc.  From the News Release about her 2009 induction as a Fellow of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, at:

http://www.asabe.org/awards/major/Awards%20PR/09fellowspr/Grandin.doc 

"Grandin is an internationally recognized expert in the design of efficient, safe, and humane animal handling equipment used on farms, ranches, zoos, and meat processing facilities. Her educational and design efforts, which emphasize the minimization of handler and animal accidents and related damage to the meat products, have earned for her the respect of producers, animal humane organizations, and inspection agencies and have moved the industry forward.  Her humane treatment and inspection system standards include the use of solid-side, curved chutes to move livestock smoothly, without electric prods and restraining equipment, to calm the animal prior to slaughter.  Almost half of the cattle in North America are handled in a center-track restrainer system that she designed, and the same system is used in  facilities in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and other countries."

For more info, see the website: http://www.grandin.com/, esp. the references, resources, and pages on "Behaviour of Cattle, Pigs, Buffalo and Antelope During Handling and Transport" at:

 

http://www.grandin.com/behaviour/transport.html 

 

- Paul North.

 

*Also famous for her autism and life story in coping with it, which was a recent HBO movie - but that's not relevant here. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)
  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Central Iowa
  • 4,825 posts
Posted by jeffhergert on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 5:57 PM

http://purduephil.wordpress.com/2006/10/09/usdas-28-hour-rule-expanded-to-trucks/

It has a link to the "full story," but it wouldn't work for me.  The link might be out of date.

Jeff

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 9,541 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 9:28 PM

The 2 paragraphs at the link provided by jeffhergert above have a decent amount of info - Purdue [University's] Animal Science "The Beef Blog - Cow Calf Weekly", posted October 9, 2006.  So even though the next link there to the "Full Story" didn't work for me, either - "The website was not found", etc. - I'm not particularly missing it.

- Paul North. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)
  • Member since
    August, 2003
  • From: Antioch, IL
  • 3,741 posts
Posted by greyhounds on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 10:47 PM

And a good and gracious "Moo" to all of you.

Here's an interesting piece from Mississippi State University on transporting Cattle.

http://msucares.com/pubs/publications/p2577.pdf

Note that stress is inherint in transport  and 1) causes weight loss, which is an economic loss;  and 2) may account for the so-called "mournful sounds" made by the critters as imagined by some folks.

I have no idea, although I've tried to find the data, as to how many cattle are shipped from Mississippi cow and calf operations to Kansas feed lots. 

But I do know that I once dealt with a man named Bill Gentleman who had been a cattleman and rode trains as a "drover".  A drover was a person man who rode the freight trains with the cattle to ensure their proper handling.  (Trains or Classic Trains ran an article on this a while back.  A young man and his farmer father had sold livestock to an eastern market.  They rode the trains with the stock.)

Bill told me the key was to get to know the yardmasters along the route.  He said he knew he had it made when they would call him "Bill".  Then he knew he could get them to make any move with his stock cars that he needed.  The key, he said, was to run a "railroad within the railroad." 

The livestock were long gone from the rails when Bill walked into my office.  We was talkin' bananas then.  But he told of a special cattle hauling railcar he actually got built.   You see, Bill knew all about this shrink thing long before those Mississippi State U professors wrote about it.  And Bill Gentleman knew that you could put feed and water in a railcar with the cattle to reduce the economic loss cause by the "shrink".  You couldn't do that with a truck. 

A truck is limited (generally) to 80,000 pounds gross.  Railcars are 286,000  or more.  That basically means you can put feed and water in the railcar, but not in a truck.  Advantage rail.  Less shrinkage = less economic loss due to transport.  Bill Gentleman actually got the US Government to do something sensible.  They agreed to waive the 24 hour rule if the cattle had continuous access to feed and water during transit.   He told me that cattle delivered by rail in such a car would be worth $20/head more than those delivered by truck.  He also said that the railroad should get every bit of that $20/head.  (Think about 100 cattle in the railcar and what that means.)

I was interested in the cattle hauling thing, but I had no idea where the ICG could apply it.  We stuck to bananas.  Which he put on our railroad complete with  banana drovers.  (Actually they guy  was called a banana messenger. He rode in the caboose.)

Anyway, if anyone could ever quantify the amount of cattle shipped from here to wherever, there could be a shot at some buisness here.  Heck, with the double stack thing we could probably give each steer a private stall, a comfy bed, feed, water, and a drover/cowboy to sing 'em to sleep.

"By many measures, the U.S. freight rail system is the safest, most efficient and cost effective in the world." - Federal Railroad Administration, October, 2009. I'm just your average, everyday, uncivilized howling "anti-government" critic of mass government expenditures for "High Speed Rail" in the US. And I'm gosh darn proud of that.
  • Member since
    December, 2005
  • From: Cardiff, CA
  • 2,930 posts
Posted by erikem on Thursday, June 02, 2011 12:35 AM

greyhounds

The livestock were long gone from the rails when Bill walked into my office.  We was talkin' bananas then.  But he told of a special cattle hauling railcar he actually got built.   You see, Bill knew all about this shrink thing long before those Mississippi State U professors wrote about it.  And Bill Gentleman knew that you could put feed and water in a railcar with the cattle to reduce the economic loss cause by the "shrink".  You couldn't do that with a truck. 

A truck is limited (generally) to 80,000 pounds gross.  Railcars are 286,000  or more.  That basically means you can put feed and water in the railcar, but not in a truck.  Advantage rail.  Less shrinkage = less economic loss due to transport.  Bill Gentleman actually got the US Government to do something sensible.  They agreed to waive the 24 hour rule if the cattle had continuous access to feed and water during transit.   He told me that cattle delivered by rail in such a car would be worth $20/head more than those delivered by truck.  He also said that the railroad should get every bit of that $20/head.  (Think about 100 cattle in the railcar and what that means.)

That idea had been implemented well before Bill walked into your office. White in his The American Railroad Freight Car described cars that had been built with watering and feeding troughs. These were built decades before long distance trucking became common, so the inventors weren't thinking of truck competition.

Good insight on Bill's part about what could be done easily on a railcar as opposed to a truck.

- Erik

  • Member since
    August, 2003
  • From: Antioch, IL
  • 3,741 posts
Posted by greyhounds on Thursday, June 02, 2011 6:49 AM

erikem

 

That idea had been implemented well before Bill walked into your office. White in his The American Railroad Freight Car described cars that had been built with watering and feeding troughs. These were built decades before long distance trucking became common, so the inventors weren't thinking of truck competition.

Good insight on Bill's part about what could be done easily on a railcar as opposed to a truck.

- Erik

Which leaves us to wonder why the concept of a stock cars with feed and water for the stock wasn't adopted.

"By many measures, the U.S. freight rail system is the safest, most efficient and cost effective in the world." - Federal Railroad Administration, October, 2009. I'm just your average, everyday, uncivilized howling "anti-government" critic of mass government expenditures for "High Speed Rail" in the US. And I'm gosh darn proud of that.
  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 9,541 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Thursday, June 02, 2011 9:22 AM

greyhounds
  Which leaves us to wonder why the concept of a stock cars with feed and water for the stock wasn't adopted. 

  What - treat the cattle better than the passengers ?!?

[1950's gadfly investor Robert R. Young (and eventual czar of the New York Central RR) and his anti-"railroad mentality" public relations campaign re: "Hogs can cross Chicago without changing cars, but you can't !" notwithstanding . . . Whistling )

The MSU paper referenced above is pretty current - copyrighted 2009.

Mischief  From a quick perusal of it - esp. pp. 3 - 4 - I suppose it's up to me to now mention the related practice of "watered stock", and I don't mean in the financial sense . . . see:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watered_stock#Origin_of_term and

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Drew of the Erie RR and New York & Harlem RR fame.

Somebody please pass the salt . . . Smile, Wink & Grin

- Paul North. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)

Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.

Search the Community

Newsletter Sign-Up

By signing up you may also receive occasional reader surveys and special offers from Trains magazine.Please view our privacy policy