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Railroaders' Nostalgia > SP caboose assignments


Date: 01/31/24 19:45
SP caboose assignments
Author: jbwest

Did SP assign cabooses to conductors?  Clearly the answer to this might have changed over time, and been subject to local agreements.  My experience in the Operating department was 1959 to around 1974, and I have no recollection of caboose assignments.  But apparently it was done of othe roads.

JBWX



Date: 01/31/24 20:03
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: Drknow

Old Heads said that where I work most road conductors lost assigned waycars in the late 50’s to early 60, but the regular job locals etc kept them pretty much into the mid or late seventies.

Info from 3rd party most of the time so 🤷‍♂️.

Regards

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/01/24 07:12
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: cewherry

jbwest Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Did SP assign cabooses to conductors?  Clearly
> the answer to this might have changed over time,
> and been subject to local agreements.  My
> experience in the Operating department was 1959 to
> around 1974, and I have no recollection of caboose
> assignments.  But apparently it was done of othe
> roads.

In my time on the SP, 1962-79, cabooses were assigned to the job, local, roustabout etc., with those on
through freight coming from a pool. My brother worked the 8 pm switcher at City of Industry, a local freight
assignment, for several years in that time period and almost always had an assigned caboose.
Occasionally their caboose would be used during the day on some other job but management allowed
whatever time was necessary for him to "tidy things up" before a wheel was turned at the beginning of his
run in the evening. 

Charlie
 



Date: 02/01/24 08:02
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: trainjunkie

Pretty sure pool cabooses started for through-freight in the mid-50s. But, as stated, locals/road switchers, etc. had them into the 70s, although as time went on the caboose assignments were to the job, rather than the individual conductor.



Date: 02/01/24 09:35
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: 3rdswitch

In the seventies, as stated, UP assigned cabooses to the job. Many in the Los Angeles area had the job name stenciled on the side of the caboose such as Pasadena Local, Industry local, etc.
JB



Date: 02/01/24 22:12
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: jbwest

I got this input from an old friend from SP:

"Yes, on SP cabooses (cabeese) used to be assigned to conductors. There was a labor agreement, as I recall sometime in the 1960s, that ended that practice. Thereafter, conductors received $1.08 per hundred miles as a “pool caboose allowance“......Back in the days of assigned cabooses, freight conductors and brakeman were not entitled to away from home lodging allowance. For the most part, they lived and cooked in the caboose at their away from home terminal."

I suppose a follow on question might be, when cabooses were assigned to conductors how much "personalization" was typically done. Did the cabooses get fixed up inside to suit their assigned conductor?

JBWX
 



Date: 02/01/24 22:32
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: radar

jbwest Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I got this input from an old friend from SP:
>
> "Yes, on SP cabooses (cabeese) used to be assigned
> to conductors. There was a labor agreement, as I
> recall sometime in the 1960s, that ended that
> practice. Thereafter, conductors received $1.08
> per hundred miles as a “pool caboose
> allowance“......Back in the days of assigned
> cabooses, freight conductors and brakeman were not
> entitled to away from home lodging allowance. For
> the most part, they lived and cooked in the
> caboose at their away from home terminal."
>
> I suppose a follow on question might be, when
> cabooses were assigned to conductors how much
> "personalization" was typically done. Did the
> cabooses get fixed up inside to suit their
> assigned conductor?
>
> JBWX
>  
Thanks for sharing that.  My grandfather was a freight conductor who retired from the SP in the 1950s, so he would have been living on the caboose.  He worked between Eugene and the Oregon coast, and he was a skilled hunter, so I bet he often killed his dinner and cooked it in the caboose.  He passed away when I was young, so I don't remember his stories.



Date: 02/02/24 09:54
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: RetiredHogger

This isn't regarding the SP, but IIRC (big if sometimes) the N&W conductor's timeslips at one time had a place for claiming an allowance for using a pool caboose. Another big "if"....in the early '80s, the claim might have been worth two bucks.



Date: 02/04/24 19:33
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: Drknow

I have always shook my head in amazement at how agreements signed 50-70 years ago that gave up claims for $1.61 or $2.50 or our licenses pay of 5 whole dollars or the short crew pay which is ludicrous… I can go on, but there is never any kind of provisos for inflation in the claims give aways.

Anyone eating high on the hog on meal enroute pay? Or that AFH meal allowance? Enjoy your Wrigley’s gum and RR water.

Regards

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/05/24 01:10
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: engineerinvirginia

Drknow Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I have always shook my head in amazement at how
> agreements signed 50-70 years ago that gave up
> claims for $1.61 or $2.50 or our licenses pay of 5
> whole dollars or the short crew pay which is
> ludicrous… I can go on, but there is never any
> kind of provisos for inflation in the claims give
> aways.
>
> Anyone eating high on the hog on meal enroute pay?
> Or that AFH meal allowance? Enjoy your Wrigley’s
> gum and RR water.
>
> Regards
>
> Posted from iPhone

I guess you know those elements are called frozen elements...inflation eventually makes them worthless...but by then you are used to working the way that payment allowed you to work. It's sinister. 



Date: 02/05/24 05:50
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: Drknow

Exactly, engineerinvirginia. While the unions send high school dropouts to the contract negotiations to play checkers, the Carriers send Ivy League lawyers to play chess.
Inflation riders should be built into the equation, but then that would be equitable, and not the result the Carriers want.

Someday… Someday the reckoning will come.

Regards

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/05/24 06:19
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: Drknow

JBWX

Accounts from the Old Heads were that there were a few assigned waycars that were nice and cozy. As some of the job’s tied up away from home one or two nights a week some guys had recliners, couches, curtains, galley and of course enough tools to rerail a train or fix a mile of track. Of course there was also enough coal, kerosene, fuse’s, etc also.
Some guys brought their dogs along too.

Kinda a nice way to make your job more enjoyable, but most of that went away by the early 80’s.

Regards

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/07/24 12:31
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: PHall

In the last few years of operation didn't the trains to Lone Pine carry two cabooses to provide enough sleeping space for the entire crew on their layover in Lone Pine?



Date: 02/07/24 14:39
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: SanJoaquinEngr

PHall Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> In the last few years of operation didn't the
> trains to Lone Pine carry two cabooses to provide
> enough sleeping space for the entire crew on their
> layover in Lone Pine?

I used to see the Lone Pine every other day when I worked the Searles turn. As I recall never saw two cabooses on the train. I think the Crew laid over in the depot or the SP had a motel contract with a local motel.

Posted from Android



Date: 02/07/24 16:18
Re: SP caboose assignments
Author: PHall

SanJoaquinEngr Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> PHall Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > In the last few years of operation didn't the
> > trains to Lone Pine carry two cabooses to
> provide
> > enough sleeping space for the entire crew on
> their
> > layover in Lone Pine?
>
> I used to see the Lone Pine every other day when I
> worked the Searles turn. As I recall never saw two
> cabooses on the train. I think the Crew laid over
> in the depot or the SP had a motel contract with a
> local motel.
>
> Posted from Android

I ask only because I've seen a couple of photos of the Lone Pine Turn with two cabooses and the captions said it was for sleeping space.
IIRC the pictures were in articles about SP's caboose fleet in the SP Annuals.



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