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 Post subject: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:17 pm 

Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 2:46 pm
Posts: 152
How many of the 118 AC&F modified mortuary cars are still around and where ? They carried 171,539 of our deceased military including civilian federal employees back home after WW2 .
Please read 'Last Train Home' an article in the magazine American History , February 2018 issue . Quite moving to say the least .


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:28 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 9:52 pm
Posts: 108
Location: Pittsburgh
Not sure if this is exactly the same article as referenced above, but it covers the topic.

http://www.historynet.com/last-train-home.htm

Unfortunately, it also includes a maddening array of pop-up advertisements…..

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


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:55 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 2:46 pm
Posts: 540
Location: St. Louis, MO
There was also an article on this subject in Railroad History #212, the journal of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society, "The Last Ride." See rlhs.org under publications for info on copies.

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Ron Goldfeder
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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:18 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5022
One of the military mortuary cars survives in Jasper, Indiana:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=4704351

This was one of the cars that ended up at the U.S. Navy's weapons base in Crane, Indiana. Eventually acquired by the Spirit of Jasper excursion train. Note the door on the end where the coffins were placed in the car for transport. The car has been extensively remodeled. The Naval station there at Crane once had some additional cars and I'm not sure what happened to them.

Les


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:59 am 

Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 2:46 pm
Posts: 152
Thanks Les

That's exactly what I was looking for. What an honor to have such a railcar that brought our people back home to their families .
Any more out there ?

Mark


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:55 am 

Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 4:12 am
Posts: 660
Location: cheyenne
Possibly one here in Cheyenne but i haven't got inside to try to ID it yet, its a hospital car of some sort just a car body on the ground. I have long thought that these should be treated with far more respect.There is also a hospital car body in Boulder its future very uncertain, it also came from Cheyenne.


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:20 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2126
Location: Northern Illinois
Careful with the generic term "hospital car". There was a whole second fleet of them built by AC&F for the Korean War, since the WWII cars were still toiling away in mortuary service. If these cars you speak of have arch roofs, they are from the later fleet.

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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 12:25 pm 

Joined: Sun Apr 29, 2007 7:19 pm
Posts: 51
This website offers additional information on the types of cars used in this service:

http://n-scalevarnish.info/index/varnish/Drafted%202.htm

It also has a photo of a car on display in Conway, South Carolina.


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:44 pm 

Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 2:46 pm
Posts: 152
Hey Dennis ,

Thanks for that tip about what to look for .

Can anyone put up pictures of the cars mentioned above ?
It would be much appreciated not to mention educational .

I would kinda like to see IRM get one . Unless I'm wrong ,displays that represent our military/veterans, I believe are sorely lacking in railway museums .


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:33 am 

Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2004 3:45 pm
Posts: 166
Location: Hudson Valley, NY
Pay this site a visit: World War II Fallen Servicemen Repatriation Program - November 1947

http://members.trainweb.com/bedt/milrr/ ... repat.html

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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:32 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2126
Location: Northern Illinois
M Secco wrote:

Can anyone put up pictures of the cars mentioned above ?
It would be much appreciated not to mention educational .



OK, here is a photo of the later ACF cars

Image

They look like lightweight cars, but I suspect they are really traditional construction with more modern roofs. I couldn't find much info, they get conflated with the rebuilt Pullman cars, but maybe that's because I did find one reference to a 1945 built date. I suspect as WWII wound down, the Army decided to rebuild the older cars into mortuary cars, and keep these on hand for future conflicts. Be that as it may, some were sold surplus; the Monon rebuilt quite a few to reequip their passenger trains during the fifties.

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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 6:03 am 

Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:49 am
Posts: 233
Location: Cambridgeshire UK
Hi Guys; I believe some of the ex US Army Hospital cars that were acquired by the Texas State Railroad in Rusk Texas, back in the 1980's, may have also seen service as Mortuary cars. Back in the early 80's, one of the TSR crew members told me he believed one of the cars they had was used in this service, it gave him the creeps every time he went near it. He also believed it was haunted. I was never sure if this guy was pulling my leg. I think some of the cars were acquired for parts and some or all may have been scrapped by now, but it might me worth checking if any of the ex Army cars that were on the Texas State Railroad were used in Mortuary service. Have fun everyone, David Notarius, Freezing in the Fenlands of Cambridgeshire, UK


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:36 pm 

Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 4:12 am
Posts: 660
Location: cheyenne
I know my cars...the Cheyenne ones are clerestories. Photos soon


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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 7:36 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:28 am
Posts: 2443
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
I believe we are conflating mortuary cars with hospital ward cars. The mortuary cars had blanked over windows, while the hospital ward cars did not.

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David M. Wilkins

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 Post subject: Re: Mortuary cars .
PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 7:57 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2126
Location: Northern Illinois
Yes, but they were the same cars. The mortuary cars were rebuilt from the older hospital cars at the end of the war. I doubt there are any of the mortuary cars left unmodified. Some hospital cars seemed to have survived, although I don't know if any of those are unmodified, either. I seem to recall the museum in Green Bay has a rebuilt Pullman style hospital car, but I can't find any info on it.

I should use this opportunity to correct a misstatement I made earlier. I always associate the arch roof AC&F hospital cars with the Korean War, but apparently they were built in the waning days of WWII, likely in preparation for the massive casualties expected from the invasion of Japan, which thankfully never took place.

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