Thursday, November 26, 2020

Scalzo Photo Collection - Unidentified Photos

We Need Your Help!

As part of our efforts to catalog and publish the collection of the late Steve Scalzo, a collection which was donated to IRM by Mr Scalzo's widow, we have begun to sort and catalog the sizable collection of photographic prints. (There are also thousands of slides that are part of the Scalzo Collection, and Ray and Julie Piesciuk have been working hard at scanning and posting them on the endlessly fascinating irm-cta.org website.)

As part of this effort, we are going to start posting unidentified or "mystery" photos that are in the collection of prints. Please let us know via comment or direct email if you have information on the cars in these photos so that we can accurately classify and file them. Photos that have been identified are listed at the bottom of the page. Your assistance is appreciated.

New photos added 11/26!

All photos shown here are the property of the Illinois Railway Museum and may not be reprinted without written permission.

Unidentified freight motor

This one doesn't offer many clues, but those angled braces on the ends of the coupled cars might look familiar to someone.

The view off of the back end of an open-platform observation car, evidently looking at a wye. Could this be the WCF&N?

There aren't too many clues in this interior photo of a classic interurban car. It's got rattan seats and dual sliding doors in the bulkhead, but that's about it.

Absolutely no idea on this one. Anyone recognize that building?

The lettering on that overpass is barely legible in the original but looks like it says Stony Island. Could this be 63rd & Stony Island when the 'L' still extended into Jackson Park?

This little critter is helpfully lettered "SHOP TRUCK" on the side. The sign on the building in the background is, unfortunately, not legible.

This crane has been adapted for snow-fighting with a plow cantilevered off the front truck. That neat cab has a very nautical, pilothouse look to me.

It wasn't terribly unusual to convert Birneys to work service but most didn't acquire a new I-beam underframe like this sand car did.

Now we're playing on "difficult mode" - this one isn't an American car. But I don't know where in the world it's from.

A Cincinnati curve-sider numbered 44 - is this the Stark Electric?

At first I thought maybe this slightly wonky shot was Fort Wayne but maybe not. That's an unusual truck on that car, too.

What leapt out to me about this photo was that the track curving in the foreground has double overhead over it. Could this be a Cincinnati Newport & Covington car in Cincinnati?

This looks very museum-y to me: it's an open car being rebuilt in what appears to be a metal-clad building. The open car is also an arch-roof car, which is unusual. I wonder if this is one of the Rio open cars at Magee?

This car is numbered 210 but I have no idea where it's from.

And this car (number not legible) is from the same system as the previous car. Check out those Maximum Traction trucks - that's a bizarre design.

It's lettered C.T.C. 300 but I'm still not sure where it's from. This couldn't be Cook Transportation in Evansville, could it?

No idea at all on this one. The car appears to be numbered 201.

This attractive California-style car looks like a trailer. Or maybe it's even a grip car, I have no idea.

An interurban coach numbered 17 - could this be the Philadelphia & West Chester?

Car 37 is signed for Depot & West Main but that doesn't narrow it down much.

This is an unusual one. It looks like a steam road depot in the background, but in the foreground is what appears to be a "signal garden" displaying various older-type signals. Except that, judging from the freight cars and overall appearance, this is likely pre-1950s. Does this ring a bell for anyone?

This cab-on-flat has a diamond-shaped emblem on the side. Maybe the Fort Doge Des Moines & Southern?

I have no idea on this hefty-looking crane numbered 59

No idea here. It's a McGuire-Cummings snow sweeper with an arch-roof car behind it and a Woolworth's 10 Cent Store off to the right, but none of that narrows it down very much.

There are a number of prints marked New York State Railways, but NYSR was a sprawling network that at one time or another incorporated city systems in Rochester, Syracuse, and Utica, as well as a few different interurban lines. This unusual work car, obviously a converted streetcar, is shown in stereotypical western New York weather but the location is totally unknown.

More NYSR equipment in more stereotypical western New York snow. Freight motor 62 is trailed by two more cars of apparently identical design, including some unusual high-mounted windows.

This NYSR car, numbered 61, looks similar to equipment run by lines east of Rochester including the Auburn & Syracuse and Rochester Syracuse & Eastern but I haven't been able to find any photos that match up exactly.


Photos That have Been Identified

Fellow blogger David Wilkins has identified this as St. Louis Public Service 615 at the Museum of Transport in St. Louis. In the background can be seen CB&Q 9908 "Silver Charger."

David Wilkins also IDed this as the SLPS sprinkler car at the Museum of Transport.

Thanks to Bill West, who tracked down evidence that this Taunton plow is on the Androscoggin & Kennebec in Maine.

Thanks to T Rich, who suggested that this is Randolph Street Station, and to Dick Lukin, who confirmed that and wrote the following:

It is of the Randolph Street station throat looking Southward from a train on Track three! The furthest  track to the west is track ONE and is a short stub of a track and used only for special moves or temp storage for a few hours or so. I worked there for the IC as a trainman for three summers and Christmas vacations. The IC hired about 15-20 guys for summer work back in the 1950s. Vacations for permanent employees were mostly in the summer, rarely in Winter....PLUS the IC suburban service had about 6 or 7 train sets of 8 cars for Washington Park Race track service, thus they needed, say, 6 engineers off the engineers' seniority board, 6 conductors, and about 20 other trainmen off the extra board. Lots of fun  working these extras, you never knew what to expect.

There were NO  single one way tickets  ever sold to Wash Park.... one could buy only a round trip ticket as most of the riders lost their ass and had NO money with which to buy a return ticket. On most hot days, the crew would open the windows on the west side of the cars, and lower the shades to reduce somewhat the heat in the cars which were sitting in the sun all afternoon. When most of the races were  over, a lot of the men did not take the time to enter the cars through the doors, but climbed into the car from the open windows. Oh Well.

Confirmed to be Chicago & West Towns 12

Stephen Karlson and C Kronenwetter have identified this as Fond du Lac Station in Milwaukee looking west towards 35th Street.

Mark Sims has correctly identified this as a Des Moines Railway car. Good find! 

Thanks to Pete Pedersen with supporting info from C Kronenwetter for identifying this as Wisconsin Public Service 26 in service in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

This photo has been identified as Rochester & Eastern freight motor 925. The photo happened to show up in the April 2020 "Headend" newsletter posted on the New York Museum of Transportation website, which identified the car and specified the location as the Rochester interurban union freight terminal at State Street Station, today a Kodak parking lot. It also says that the photo was probably taken by William G. Amer.

Freight motor 406 ran on the Oneida Railway, part of the NYSR Utica Lines. This line used third rail and was known for a couple of unusual traits: first, it had a pair of "Windsplitter" interurban cars built in 1912 by Kuhlman; and second, it was an Oneida Railway interurban car that made the famous long-distance interurban trip all the way from Utica to Louisville, Kentucky in 1910, traveling the entire distance on interurbans and nearly the entire distance under power.

Car 32 ran on the Mohawk Valley interurban line, a component of NYSR Utica Lines that extended from Utica through Rome to Little Falls. This car was built in 1911 by Kuhlman.

This is another photo on the Mohawk Valley line out of Utica, taken in 1925 between Utica and Rome. The car on the right, car 40, was built in 1913 by Kuhlman. The lightweight cars later used on the Rochester Subway were built for this line in 1916. This photo appears in Sheldon King's NYSR book credited to Barney Neuberger.

Trailer 1114 was used in city service in Rochester. It was built by Kuhlman in 1913.

A builder's photo of trailer 1111, built in 1913 by Kuhlman for use on the Rochester Lines of NYSR.

Car 1019 is a Rochester Lines NYSR car built by Kuhlman in 1913. It is shown in 1940 on Dewey Avenue in northwest Rochester at the NYC - B&O crossing. This photo appears in Sheldon King's NYSR book credited to Barney Neuberger.

Car 1023 is part of the same series as 1019 shown above and, like 1019, would have been assigned to NYSR Rochester Lines. It's most likely shown at Seneca Park in Rochester.

Car 1062 was used in Syracuse on the NYSR city system there. It was built in 1916 by Kuhlman.

Car 1084 was also used on the NYSR Syracuse Lines. This photo shows it at Wolf Street Loop on the "last day," January 4, 1941. This photo appears in Sheldon King's NYSR book credited to Barney Neuberger.

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Tuesday Progress

 It was another nice day at the Museum, and we continue to make progress while following all the guidelines for a safe, happy, and healthy work environment.  Doesn't everybody?

As usual, I continued work on the roof of the 453.  I made two more boards for the southwest corner patch, and after some adjustment they look like this:


I then mixed up some epoxy, a combination of liquid and solid as recommended by our in-house expert on such things, and installed the two additional layers.  The lower one is attached with C clamps as seen here:


And the upper layer is put in place and held with two small sledge hammers as weights.  I can assure you they didn't get any spare epoxy on them.  The next step will be to nail what's left of the curved roof boards into them.


Tim continued his work on the various parts for the new 50th Avenue ticket booth.



John was working on the 306 also, mostly on getting all of the heaters ready.  I should have gotten a picture of him testing them with his VOM, but I was too busy.  I really don't know how well that was going -- I believe he met with some resistance.

Be that as it may, I spent some time investigating a known problem with the 453.  The coupler at the #2 end is missing some parts, most obviously the hook, as I'll call it.  I looked at it some more, and I don't believe the coupler is damaged in any way, it's just missing some parts.


I believe this probably happened when the four St. Louis cars were being moved to Cleveland; they removed parts so a towbar or some sort of adapter could be used to pull the train.  This certainly happened before 1979, as I have a picture of the 453 with the coupler in this condition.


At the other end, you can see what it should look like.



We have at least one spare Tomlinson coupler, with "431" marked on it in chalk.  But it has a different sort of uncoupling mechanism.  It's hard to explain in words, but apparently the 450's have a different arrangement than the earlier cars.


I went out along the road to look at our spare coupler assortment.  I didn't find anything usable for the 453, but I couldn't help noticing this tight-lock coupler, now one of our newest interests.  The cast-in letters obviously indicate this was produced by Van Dorn, right here in Chicago.  And there are lots of others.  Who knew?



Well, back to work.  At the southeast corner, the tack molding was partly rotted away.  Obviously it has to be replaced.  So I started on that, with a hammer and chisel.


It took much longer than expected, but having begun, there's no turning back. Finally it was done:


And Tim had a block of poplar from an earlier project of his, so I cut that to shape, more or less, and took it home for processing on my router.  This should be the last major project on the roof structure.

Stay tuned for further developments!