Friday, May 06, 2011

One of the more interesting things I have noticed after the merger or acquisition of a railroad, is the variety of equipment picked up by the new operating railroad company after the merger.

In the year of 1968, the Chicago Great Western Railroad. was bought out through merger by the Chicago & NorthWestern Railroad.

The former Chicago Great Western Railroad, had used these very squatty looking low cupola cabooses on some of their freight trains, as well as bay window models.
The Chicago & NorthWestern, had decided around the end of the steam era, that cupola cabooses were impractical, and had blanked out the upper cupola windows on many of their cabooses before standardizing on the bay window model.

Around this time, freight trains were becoming quiete longer, freight car heights were becoming taller, and the old friction bearing trucks wich required constant attention and frequent lubrication, were being replaced by much easier to maintain roller bearing trucks.

The old CGW cabooses were good solid built equipment, that had plenty of life left in them yet when acquired by the C & N,W. The Chicago & NorthWestern immediately blanked over the cupola windows, put CGW reprting marks on the sides, and placed them in to service pronto.

This photo was from My Link page Fallen Flags.Org, located to the right of Your computer screen. This low or "Northeastern" style former CGW cupola caboose, was photographed at Kenosha Wisconsin in the year of 1981.

I mostly saw the former CGW cupola cabooses on Chicago & NorthWestern M.O.W Dept work trains during the 1970's, 80's and 90's around the greater Chicagoland area.

Luckilly, one of these has been preserved and restored to the original maroon Chicago Great Western Railroad colors and markings, and is on display today at The Illinois Railway Museum in the town of Union Illinois.

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