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Nostalgia & History > F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B


Date: 01/14/22 13:57
F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: LV95032

No date or location but under PRR catenary.




Date: 01/14/22 15:00
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: refarkas

Three locomotives and a combine - Slightly overpowered!
Bob



Date: 01/14/22 15:13
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: krm152

WOW!  I am a commited Southern fan going back to my early boyhood.  This photo is absolutely to my liking. 
According to my "Diesels of the Southern Railway" book, #6113 was traded to EMD on Jun 21, 1963; so the photo preceeds this date
Definitely north on AF Tower.  Will consult my POT Yard books to see if I can find any additional Info.
ALLEN
 



Date: 01/14/22 15:47
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: cr7998

Rich - Thanks for sharing another nice shot from Walter Schopp.  The location is just south of RO Tower in Arlington, Virginia, and the train is northbound.  The PRR catenary is for freight trains in and out of Potomac Yard, just south of here.  RO controlled the interlocking at the south end of Long Bridge over the Potomac River between Washington DC and Virginia.  The stone yard on the right was a local landmark until the early 1980's, and was also the destination of the stone train that loaded on the RF&P Dalghren Branch.  The site of the stone yard is now Long Bridge Park.  

krm152 noted that the photo had to be prior to the 1963 retirement date of the lead unit.  I am puzzled why there would be a one-car train into Washington Union Station at that time.  This sort of move happened almost every day from 1970 to 1975 for trains #7 and #8, the remnants of the old Birmingham Special, which operated with one or two coaches between Alexandria and Washington DC, but handled TOFC traffic south of Alexandria.  I sure would like to know the story about the move depicted here, but that is probably lost by now.  

Steve Salamon
Valley City, OH  

 



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/14/22 15:51 by cr7998.



Date: 01/14/22 19:10
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: krm152

The B Unit in the photo is actually an E6B.

Page 350 of my "Diesels of the Southern Railway" book includes a photo in February 1963 of a train at Alexandria VA that is very similar to the trin in Walter's photo except it has a different power set.  It has an E6A, E7A, & FP7.  It is trailed by a single combine like the one in the posted photo.

Will do some further research.

ALLEN



Date: 01/14/22 19:57
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: LV95032

Yes I wondered about that - thanks

krm152 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The B Unit in the photo is actually an E6B.
>
> Page 350 of my "Diesels of the Southern Railway"
> book includes a photo in February 1963 of a train
> at Alexandria VA that is very similar to the trin
> in Walter's photo except it has a different power
> set.  It has an E6A, E7A, & FP7.  It is trailed
> by a single combine like the one in the posted
> photo.
>
> Will do some further research.
>
> ALLEN



Date: 01/14/22 22:19
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: krm152

The complete story is on Page 9 of “Southern Railway in Color" by Morning Sun Books.
In 1961, Southern inaugurated rail-highway service referred to as COMAR for “Coordinated Motor And Rail”. The trains operated at passenger speeds with passenger power. They also included a rider combine. The power and combine were serviced at Washington Union Station where the trains originated and terminated.

Southbound, #19 left the terminal with mail cars (baggage cars) and stopped further south at SOU’s Van Dorn St. Yard to pick up the intermodal cars.

Northbound, #20 only handled intermodal cars. These cars would be dropped at Van Dorn St. Yard with the power and combine continuing solo to Washington Union Station.

We can now conclude that Walter took this photo of sometime after COMAR service was initiated in 1961 and before #6113 was retired on June 21, 1963. The solo power and combine indicate the train was operating northbound; hence was SOU #20.

cr7998 corroborated the direction the train was operating. Additionally, he identified the precise location where the photo was taken.

So, starting with nothing, we now know all the essential information about the photo except for the exact date on which it was taken.

Thanks for posting this wonderful Southern Railway photo. Deciphering this mystery has been a real interesting and enjoyable challenge.

ALLEN



Date: 01/15/22 03:55
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: Notch7

It was nice to see this great picture.  At some point, these trains were resymboled with the old mail train numbers 21 and 22.  When the Southern computerized their train numbers around 1970, trains 21 and 22 got intermodal train numbers - 221 and 222.   No. 22 and later 222 would sometimes run ahead of schedule.  Because of that sometimes no. 22 would run as Second 48 -a second section of No. 48 - the Southerner.  In Penn Central days, they tried some PC Flexi-Vans on no. 21.  I'm guessing it was  bulk mail, since bulk mail usually rode just behind the engines.  A few photos exist, and for many years Southern kept what appeared to be a Flexi-Van tandem wheelset in the second intermodal yard at Charlotte.  When I started training on 221 and 222 in August of 1973, Southern was still using one FP7 on the trains Atlanta-Washington.  It rode behind three second generation GP's.  Sometimes the boiler was already fired up. When  222 picked up No. 8's heavyweight coach at Lynchburg, the train became No. 8.  Likewise southbound out of Washington, it ran as no. 7 to Lynchburg, then 221 south.  Because of this hookup, on my district, 222 was treated with passenger train priority and had a limit of 40 pig flats. No. 221 and 222 used the same power, and turning time in Atlanta could get short. Later as 221 got heavier, they began running four GP's on the trains,  and just kept the FP7 at Lynchburg.   No.22/222 ran with two blocks.  The Potomac Yard intermodal block for PRR and B&O interchange was head out, and the Alexandria Proper intermodal block for Van Dorn was on the rear.  Both yards were in Alexandria.  For many years the Southern trains between Alexandria and Washington were run by special Washington Division yard crews called "cutoff men or cutoff crews".



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/15/22 03:58 by Notch7.



Date: 01/15/22 04:02
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: CPR_4000

Notch 7 mentions PC Flexi-Vans ... if I remember right, Southern had some Flexi-Van containers, if not also spine cars.

That stone facility was switched by an ex-WM Alco in the early 70's, an S2 or S4.



Date: 01/15/22 04:48
Re: F unit Friday - Southern style - F3, FP7, E7B
Author: Notch7

CPR_4000 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Notch 7 mentions PC Flexi-Vans ... if I remember
> right, Southern had some Flexi-Van containers, 

Yes, Southern had some Flexi-Van flats and containers.  Later they sold them to NYC.  I understand PRR leased some Flexi-Van equipment from NYC prior to the merger.  In the B&W fireman's side wedge shot I have of no. 21 in VA, you can't see the lettering, just the shape of the Flevi-Van car, which is different from the Southern COFC cars of that time.  PC was the mail contractor up until the mid 70's.  I had mail from the PC on SOU no. 5 the Piedmont in baggs and pigs til I quit working on no. 5 in May of 76.



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