Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Visit to Gibraltar

I've just returned from a vacation trip down along the Mississippi to Vicksburg, the Gibraltar of the South.  The military park there is wonderful, and the highlight of the trip was the USS Cairo exhibit.  

To make a long story short, it was sunk by a mine in 1862 in the Mississippi near Vicksburg, and raised in 1964.   I could post plenty of pictures of the ship, including the steam propulsion system which is in amazingly good condition, but to keep things somewhat on-topic, parts of the ship were armored with rails:

Memphis was mostly all Elvis, all the time, but there is a heritage streetcar system, which has been out of operation for the last two years.  The cars came from Melbourne, Oporto, and other places, I am told, and when some of them caught fire while in service the system was shut down.  They may be starting again soon, it's not clear.  The infrastructure is extensive and looks quite interesting, although I couldn't quite figure out how the switches work.

In the meantime, it appears that the electric cars have been replaced with a more reliable form of rapid transit.

And I generally don't follow these things, but in Grenada, Miss. we just happened across some nicely-repainted cab units and passenger cars.

I'm sure some of you will immediately recognize exactly what we're looking at, and can fill in the details.  But for me, tomorrow it's back to work at IRM.  Watch this space for results!

1 comment:

Chris said...

Iowa Pacific has actually been of recent importance. For the past few years they have been buying up damn near every one of the lightweight and some heavyweight passenger cars that becomes available, even recovering a few grounded "lake cottage" cars. They run many tourist lines all over the place, and run a set of cars on Amtrak's City of New Orleans as a premium service. Most significantly, they were selected by the state of Indiana as the private concession operator for what was formerly Amtrak's Hoosier State from Chicago to Indianapolis, with Amtrak putting up static about it ever since.

Obviously one of the owners is an Illinois Central fan. I have no idea what the purpose of this particular selection of equipment in the time and place of the photographs is.