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Nostalgia & History > RI into Watertown, SD 1912

Date: 01/11/17 19:26
RI into Watertown, SD 1912
Author: mamfahr

Hello all,

Here's a reply to a question a few days ago about RI's operations in/out of Watertown, SD, from a RI dispatcher's sheet from Nov 3, 1912:

westbound -
No. 85 (local freight) engine 1155 left Ellsworth 745am, arrived Watertown 830pm; had 35 minutes delay Ellsworth to "work merchandise & make up train". 
No. 417 (passenger) engine 576 left Ellsworth 1153am, arrived Watertown 437pm, consist:  RI 1319 (combn), 501 (coach), 666 (chair car).

No. 86 (local freight) engine 1153 left Watertown 710am, arrived Ellsworth 435pm. 
No. 418 (passenger) engine 478 left Watertown 1000am, arrived Ellsworth 330pm, consist:  RI 1375 (combn), 402 (coach), 665 (chair car).

It's really interesting to review these old documents, lots of noteworthy stuff on them, such as:
- One of the freight trains (shown on another sheet) picked up livestock at 7 different towns along his route. 
- A town's name caught my eye, "Germania"; it didn't ring a bell (being an Iowa native I've heard of most towns...) so I checked it out.  Turns out they renamed the town in 1919 due to WWI anti-German sentiment, it was renamed Lakota, IA.    
- there's a note saying that they had a sideswipe accident in the Iowa Falls yard near the sandhouse, involving engines 1550 and 1958, one had severe damage to the cylinder and couldn't leave on his assigned train; the other had pilot damage and all wheels derailed but was ok to go after 4 hours of work.
- An eastbound passenger train showed a delay of 16 minutes leaving Estherville, due to "feeding 51 passengers" (presumably in a nearby restaurant acct no dining car on the train).
- roughly half of the trains they operated in NW Iowa that day had some sort of mechanical problem on a locomotive or car that caused a significant delay, I suppose that was just the way things were back in those early days...

Take care,




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/11/17 20:05 by mamfahr.

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