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 Post subject: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:17 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2004 5:48 pm
Posts: 372
Location: Hickory, NC
Where did the tradition of engineers mounting brass candlesticks on their locomotives originate from? Is there a source of modern reproductions?

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Matt Bumgarner
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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:37 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:05 pm
Posts: 235
Candlesticks? Are you referring to the flag standards that some roads used on the pilot beam and/or headlight platform?

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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:52 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2004 5:48 pm
Posts: 372
Location: Hickory, NC
I don't know that they were flag standards, but in my limited knowledge and their use on the Southern Railway, they were decorative "sticks" mounted to either side of the steam locomotive headlights in an effort by engineers to personalize the locomotives they were most regularly assigned to.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:54 pm 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
Posts: 1462
I recall seeing what I think he is referring to, but have never thought much about them. As I recall, they look like actual candles mounted high on the smokebox front and tipped out to each side maybe 10-15 degrees each. They were decorative and maybe a regional preference. They may have been combined with other decorations. They generally appeared probably pre-1900, but possibly later. I would also like to know more about them.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 10:16 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:38 am
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Location: Philadelphia
I've seen the ones that project from near the headlight but perhaps the original poster is referring to the vertical ones mounted on the pilot, like on the celebrity UP 119:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/jsjgeology/23194846536

Joshua


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:38 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
How do you keep the candles lit at speed?

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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:01 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:05 pm
Posts: 235
Look at the Flickr picks of UP119 and Jupiter posted by Joshua. They are for flag sticks for displaying proper train signals. And from another very recent thread - there's a general overview of locomotive signals circa 1904 on pages 486-491 here - https://archive.org/details/scienceofra ... k/page/486. Each RR had it's own signal rules that generally conformed to what's presented there, but there were plenty of variations, particularly earlier before things started to standardize.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:34 am 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
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Maybe Matt could find a photo for us. I have seen photos showing the apparent candle stick decoration that he is referring to and it has nothing to do with signals or markers. The candle sticks are purely ornamental, as are hood ornaments on automobiles. Maybe these candle sticks were just used by Southern R.R. I seem to recall photos showing the candle sticks quite conspicuously, and also accompanied by other decorative elements. Maybe this was in conjunction with engines being all decked out with wreaths, bunting, and other decorations for special celebratory events. I am sure that there was all manor of this type of decoration.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:57 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 1866
Location: Strasburg, PA
Attachment:
158.jpg
158.jpg [ 344.71 KiB | Viewed 1846 times ]


On the right side of this drawing is the 1924 version that Baldwin called "Signal Fixtures". Looks like #90 was built with them, but they didn't last long.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:04 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:01 pm
Posts: 121
This looks like what is being referred to.
Image


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:14 am 

Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 4:02 pm
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Location: Back in NE Ohio
I believe that in the 1970's and early '80's, Mr. Purdy outfitted at least C&O #2716, and maybe T&P #610 with candlesticks when they were briefly part of the Southern steam program, if anyone can find a photo of them from that era. Maybe I remember incorrectly. Also, I'm fairly certain that RDG #2101 had something extra around it's headlight for the Chessie Steam Special years. Candlesticks or a brass Eagle?


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:01 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2004 5:48 pm
Posts: 372
Location: Hickory, NC
Yes, the photo of the Southern engine above is exactly what I am talking about. As is this-


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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:03 am 

Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 5:06 pm
Posts: 173
Look at just about any picture of the General...

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Brass candlesticks on steam locomotives
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 1:56 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2675
They would appear to be rather decorative, especially since they're polished brass.

However, they also seem to be in the correct position to be flying signal flags, for example white for an extra, or green for additional sections. Could this be the origin of the "candlesticks"? So there's an underlying function behind the lovely form?


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