Black Hills Central Railroad passenger cars

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  • Member since
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  • From: Altadena, CA
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Black Hills Central Railroad passenger cars
Posted by 081552 on Sunday, July 1, 2007 7:14 PM
In 2005 I visited the Black Hills Central Railroad in Hill City, SD. The passenger cars looked like old interurban cars. Does anyone have any additional information?
  • Member since
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  • From: North Myrtle Beach, SC
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Posted by Beach Bill on Monday, July 9, 2007 4:30 PM

Source for this is "All Aboard the 1880 Train", published by the Black Hills Central.

Coaches 112 "Orville", 125 "Keystone", and 133 "Addie Camp" were built by the American Car Company for the Oregon Electric Railway in 1913.  Several cars from this series were sold to the Pacific Great Eastern Ry in British Columbia, where they were used until the 1960s.  The Black Hills Central purchased them in the early 1970s.

Coach 144 "Redfern" was originally build as a baggage car, and was converted to a coach by the Oregon Electric Rialway in 1915.  Black Hills Central has converted this one to an open observation car.

Coach 140 "Mystic" was also formerly an Oregon Electric Railway coach that has been converted into an open observation car in 1999.

Coach 91 "Rochford" began as a camp car on the CB&Q to carry water and ice for the track crews.  It has a squared appearance following its conversion to a coach by the Black Hills Central.

Coach 10800 "Hilyo" was originally a Chicago & North Western Drover's Waycar, restored in 1998.

The Snack Bar cars were originally WWII era heavyweight Hospital Cars, acquired from the Igloo Army Depot at Edgemond, South Dakota.

Hope this helps.  Bill

With reasonable men, I will reason; with humane men I will plead; but to tyrants I will give no quarter, nor waste arguments where they will certainly be lost. William Lloyd Garrison
  • Member since
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  • From: Aledo IL
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Posted by spokyone on Monday, July 23, 2007 7:44 PM
Thanks for the info, Bill.
  • Member since
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  • From: Aledo IL
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Posted by spokyone on Monday, September 24, 2007 10:43 PM
 Beach Bill wrote:

Coach 10800 "Hilyo" was originally a Chicago & North Western Drover's Waycar, restored in 1998.

According to the crew of the 1880 Train, only one other example of a drover car exists. Does anyone know where the other might be located? The trainman I asked did not know.
In case you missed it, here is a recent video of mine including the drover car.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SC1lu-f3Y8

 

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  • From: Canby, Oregon
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Posted by Jim700 on Tuesday, October 30, 2007 10:36 AM
 Beach Bill wrote:

Coaches 112 "Orville", 125 "Keystone", and 133 "Addie Camp" were built by the American Car Company for the Oregon Electric Railway in 1913.  Several cars from this series were sold to the Pacific Great Eastern Ry in British Columbia, where they were used until the 1960s.  The Black Hills Central purchased them in the early 1970s.

Coach 144 "Redfern" was originally build as a baggage car, and was converted to a coach by the Oregon Electric Rialway in 1915.  Black Hills Central has converted this one to an open observation car.

Coach 140 "Mystic" was also formerly an Oregon Electric Railway coach that has been converted into an open observation car in 1999.

The Oregon Electric interurban coaches were purchased by the Black Hills Central from the Vernonia, South Park & Sunset Steam Railroad which operated them in excursion service from 1964 through 1969 on a 42-mile round trip between Banks and Vernonia, Oregon on the Spokane, Portland & Seattle Railway's Vernonia Branch which had a 7-mile 2.3% ruling grade.  They were pulled by the ex-Oregon-American Lumber Company #105, a 1925 Baldwin 2-6-2, which was built for the O-A mill in Vernonia and served there until the mill closed in 1957.  The tourist line used SP&S crews and I was the regular SP&S fireman on the trains the last three years.

Passenger service on the Oregon Electric Railway ended in May 1933 and quite a few of their cars ended up on the PGE where they served until replaced by Budd cars.  It is interesting that so many of them returned to run on the same railway for which they were built (the OE was a SP&S subsidiary) and the Vernonia Branch was only a short distance from the electrified line on which they ran originally.

They were certainly well-built truss-rod wooden coaches.  They left Vancouver, Washington headed east toward the Black Hills Central on the rear end of about a 100-car freight train.  Upon arrival at Wishram, the train was bled and the West End Switcher (an ALCO RS-3) proceeded to grab a hold of the caboose and acey-deucy out the train.  The tremendous strain placed on the coaches as they were rammed and stretched by all of that tonnage as the train was repeatedly kicked and stopped during the switching operation would have been expected to literally tear them apart.  Such was not the case, even though they were nearly 60 years old at the time.  Now, at 94 years of age, they're still in service!

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  • From: Aledo IL
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Posted by spokyone on Tuesday, October 30, 2007 5:28 PM
Hey Jim
  Thanks for the info and welcome to the Forum

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