Home Open Account Help 237 users online

Railroaders' Nostalgia > [Left At The First Junction, Then Right At The Next Three


Date: 08/31/19 18:02
[Left At The First Junction, Then Right At The Next Three
Author: ExSPCondr

Santa Fe 199's post brings up an old play on words.  This goes back to World War II when the PE was very busy  and short on crews, and the story was told to me by one of their senior conductors when we were both at C of I in the 70s.

An extra freight crew was called at State St Yard that evening to take an electric freight motor cab hop to Irwindale to get the rock and bring it back to LA

To get to Irwindale, an engine had to make a left turn at Valley Jct which was right at the East end of the yard,  then go kind of  Left at Sierra Vista which was about 5 miles up the road, then go Right (straight) at Oneonta Park, Oak Knoll, and San Marino Jcts.. Then the ballast cars would be visible on the left after another ten miles or so on the left.  

The crew called were apparently two brand new brakemen, and a fairly new conductor and motorman used off of either the South or the West Districts to work extra on the North.  They asked the yardmaster how to get to the rock spurs at Irwindale, and he said "Left at the first Jct, then right at the next three."

Only one problem, the yardmaster assumed that the crew knew enough to go left at the East end of the yard at Valley Jct, and the Left applied at Sierra Vista.  Well, they counted Valley as the Left, and went Right at Sierra Vista, which had the passenger service discontinued to Temple City a couple of years before, and the wire had been taken down a mile or so East.  They did right well cab hop until they got to Fremont Ave and the lights went out!

They let the motor roll while they tried to get the trolley pole back on the wire with a lantern, and when the motor finally stopped,  then they figured out that there was no wire, and they were stuck. The conductor had to walk the two miles back to Sierra Vista to get to a dispatchers phone, and then it took some time to figure out where they were with no wire, and what went wrong.

Needless to say, the dispatcher had to call either a steam or a diesel engine to go out to Alhambra on the end of the Tempe City Line to get the dead electric and pull it back to Sierra Vista so it could go on out Huntington Drive.
G



Date: 09/01/19 11:35
Re: [Left At The First Junction, Then Right At The Next Three
Author: cewherry

Neat story George. The original teller wouldn't have been Al Hughes, would it? He and my dad shared the same seniority date.
I've been on more than a couple of jobs that were 'saved' by the SPINS books; especially on the south branches.

Charlie 



Date: 09/01/19 21:41
Re: [Left At The First Junction, Then Right At The Next Three
Author: ExSPCondr

Charlie,
It sure woiuld have, he was the Conductor on the 5pm C of I job at the time!
G



Date: 09/02/19 08:51
Re: [Left At The First Junction, Then Right At The Next Three
Author: Westbound

That’s a truly classic story. Reminds us of the great loss (at least out west) of most of the branch lines that once seemed to go almost everywhere.



[ Share Thread on Facebook ] [ Search ] [ Start a New Thread ] [ Back to Thread List ] [ <Newer ] [ Older> ] 
Page created in 0.0365 seconds