Railway Preservation News

Caboose Identity Request
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Author:  J3a-614 [ Thu Dec 29, 2016 1:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Caboose Identity Request

From a friend on Facebook:

For anyone who is interested:

Rocking Horse Ranch [tourist attraction in New York] has a wood caboose available to anyone who thinks they can move it off their property in the next 15 months. I inspected it on Saturday, but took no pictures as it was raining too hard to not soak my camera.

As a rail car, it is useless to the [Catskill Mountain] railroad's cause and to any plans I had. If you wanted a stationary piece for your yard... it's going to need a re-sheathing.

It's on archbar trucks, has no brake pipe equipment, no couplers, and has a twist in the pulling-face of the frame that would accept a coupling. Sheathing is plywood, over what I don't know. No idea of heritage. For free it might be worth it if I lived up there, had property, and was ambitious.

Figured I'd share what I found. Thanks Art for pointing it out.

Anyway, I thought I would take a stab at identifying the car's heritage. I think she looks like former NYO&W, but I can't really tell. Any other comments or suggestions?

http://www.singleparenttravel.net/wp-co ... cn3367.jpg

Author:  Larry Lovejoy [ Thu Dec 29, 2016 4:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

From what little you can see in the photo, it appears to have the same Wolfe trucks as found under other O&W 8300 series cabooses.

/s/ Larry
Lawrence G. Lovejoy, P.E.

Author:  JR May [ Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

That's a CNJ caboose. Pine Creek probably has the best example. Originally built from wooden boxcars that date from 1874. Had s steel frame added at some point. The marker lamp extensions confirm it.

Looks to be in nice shape. The plywood would have been added I think in the 1940s.

Have attached a copy of the one at PCK/NJMT riding on 3' gauge trucks.

image.jpeg [ 332.97 KiB | Viewed 4658 times ]

Author:  G. W. Laepple [ Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

I agree with JR. As soon as I saw the plywood siding and the lack of windows in the cupola, I thought CNJ. I remember one of these things in Ashley, Pa.during the mid-60's. It was used as a rider car when the helpers shoved trains up Penobscot Mountain. The train crew would move from their assigned caboose into this car behind the helpers (An F-M Trainmaster and an RSD-something) for the ascent. It was so rickety that when the helpers started to shove the train, the entire body of the car actually lurched on the frame!

Author:  JR May [ Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

There's a lot of this class of CNJ caboose around. Two live at Pine Creek, one in Howell, NJ, another in Buena Vista, NJ, the Pemberton, NJ caboose is hidden safely away someplace, one up in Philipsburg, NJ and probably a couple that I missed. How this one got up to NY state is a mystery at this point. Would be nice to find the number on it someplace. In searching the web, it sure is a well hidden CNJ hack. I may give the park a call just to see what I can learn.

Author:  Alexander D. Mitchell IV [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:21 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

Having finally opened up my copy of "Captive Cabeese" and cross-referenced Brother May's remarks with its listings, I will propose that it is possible that this is CNJ 91145, supposedly built 1942(?),which was previously reported as being at Whippany Railway Museum, no longer there, and "GONE TO??" at the end of its listing.

Author:  JR May [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 9:25 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

I will check with Whippany for any clues on the 91145 angle. As to the 1942 date that would fit with the last rebuild and addition of the plywood siding to these old series of cabooses.

Somewhere, I think in hard copy only, I put together a list of the surviving examples of this class. This one in NY state was a surprise to me.

Author:  Alexander D. Mitchell IV [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 9:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

"Captive Cabeese"/S. Roger Kirkpatrick is listing the following for that CNJ "class":

91145, the mystery ex-Whippany one.....
91155 and 91245 at Farmingdale, NJ
91197 at Phillipsburg, NJ
91392 model RR club, Richland, NJ
91291(?) caught up in the Pemberton, NJ fiasco--did it escape or not? Can't find a solid answer....
91309 Buckingham, Pa. florist shop Rt. 413
91343 Jim Thorpe, Pa.

From there, I *think* the other survivors, in the 915xx series, are steel......

So the NY State example is either the ex-Whippany car, the Pemberton car, something Kirkpatrick missed, or a new fabrication........

Author:  JR May [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

Not real sure where you dream up some of your assumptions, comical if anything. That list is far from complete. The P'ton caboose is in storage locally. There is another in Howell and a few others not on the list.

Author:  JR May [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

This would be an updated/corrected list of where these wooden CNJ hacks may be today. I added 6 additional survivors.

91145 - possibly part of the M&E's "Whippany Toonerville” Not sure I believe this or not.

91155 and 91245 - both at NJMT/Pine Creek in Farmingdale, NJ

91197 - at Phillipsburg, NJ (apparently via Sickley Brothers Fuel in South Orange, NJ)

91392 - model RR club, Richland, NJ (actually owned by BV township, not the club)

91291-– Part of the current Pemberton collection, in storage. No mystery here.

91309 - Buckingham, Pa. florist shop Rt. 413

91343 - At the A&A RR - Apparently had been at Jim Thorpe, Pa., may have been owned by the M&E at one point which is why I question the comment on the M&E above)

In addition:
91165 – went to a private owner in 1973. Not sure who that may have been.

91xxx – There were two in storage at Sickley Brothers Fuel (and lumber) in South Orange, NJ into the 1980s apparently. No idea where this second one went (see above for the other one)

91335 – Private owner in Howell, NJ. Had been in Morganville. One of the very few with steel end beams.

91267 – I have a photo of it, no idea the background of the photo. Looks like the 1970s though.

91241 – was in Florence, NJ apparently. Not sure of status.

91345 – Looks like this is the one Blackwood along a trail.

I have nothing on one finding its way to NY state, but the details of the NY state caboose are perfectly in line with a caboose of this class. A road trip may be in order.

And I am sure there are still more in a backyard someplace that is missed here, or a few that have been moved around.

Hopes this helps a little,

Author:  robertjohndavis [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request


There was one in Highlands, NJ near Bahr's Restaurant until 1983 or so. The number escapes me. It was available for free. I tried to acquire it for a local historical society, but we could not move fast enough. Was told at the time it was "given to a fire company." Never did learn if that was for display or destruction.

There was also one in Lincroft, NJ for awhile (dance studio, perhaps?). I believe that was scrapped in place.

Really neat cars. As you know, I have a soft spot for them. There is a potential home for the Rocking Horse caboose in Monmouth County, a group looking for a caboose in decent shape.


Author:  Alexander D. Mitchell IV [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

Don't shoot the messenger. I never claimed Kirkpatrick's list was complete, nor would he.

Logically speaking, a CNJ caboose up at the theme park in NY state HAS to be either one of the listed cabooses, something that Kirkpatrick missed or categorized under a different number, OR not actually a caboose but a well-done replica.

Several other web pages, of course many from years ago, presented a similar or identical list of "surviving CNJ cabooses."

Five of the six listed by J.R. as "in addition" qualify as speculation by this time, with no evidence offered that they still exist. I, for one, will fret about those if and when they actually surface, unless I'm actively seeking parts or a project.

Author:  JR May [ Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Caboose Identity Request

When in doubt pick up the phone....

I called the Ranch. It is a real caboose, it was a gift at some point a fairly long time ago.

They were pretty emphatic that they were not looking to get rid of it. They did log into RyPN and looked at the postings here today as we spoke and were very happy to learn so much about their caboose. The person I spoke to said she will check for any history, to include its number, and call me back.

So, its real. Its apparently not available per the person I spoke to. And she will get back to me with a number if they have it.


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