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Although pragmatic, this mode of transportation did not come without its challenges. In December 1941, when the U.S. entered the war after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor, the number of existing standard railway passenger cars was not nearly enough to haul the huge numbers of personnel and materials needed to support the war effort. As a result, the U.S. Office of Defense Transportation (created to ensure that all national transportation priorities were fulfilled), requisitioned the Pullman-Standard Car Manufacturing Company and the American Car & Foundry to build hybrid troop cars.
The Pullman-Standard Car Manufacturing Company produced 2,400 troop sleepers (a mobile barracks) and 10 kitchen cars, while American Car & Foundry built 440 kitchen cars and 200 hospital cars. These trains were vital to the country’s war effort. For instance, in 1944, considered the peak war year, 97% of military passengers traveled by rail.
In effort to create as many troop cars as quickly and efficiently as possible, these rolling stock were manufactured based on standard Association of American Railroads 50’ 6” single–sheathed steel boxcars. Made entirely of steel, with heavily reinforced ends, troop cars utilized existing design elements, fixtures, manufacturing lines, materials and production equipment. They featured the following: Allied Full Cushion high-speed swing motion trucks, light-weight passenger car-like flat ends and doors, freight car-like floors, roofs, and sides, a row of windows, and a centered door along each body side.
Troop sleeper cars were painted olive drab with "Pullman" lettered in gold above the center door. Although owned by the government, troop sleepers were managed by Pullman and staffed with company-employed Pullman Porters. Each sleeper could accommodate 29 military personnel (with bunk beds stacked 3-high) and a Pullman porter.
Road Name History:
In 1988, the Rio Grande's parent corporation, Rio Grande Industries, purchased Southern Pacific Transportation Company, and as the result of a merger, the larger Southern Pacific Railroad name was chosen for identity. The Rio Grande operated as a separate division of the Southern Pacific, until that company was acquired by the Union Pacific Railroad. Today, most former D&RGW main lines are owned and operated by the Union Pacific while several branch lines are now operated as heritage railways by various companies.
Read more on Wikipedia.
Brand/Importer Information: Micro-Trains is the brand name used by both Kadee Quality Products and Micro-Trains Line. For a history of the relationship between the brand and the two companies, please consult our Micro-Trains Collector's Guide.
Micro-Trains Line Co. split off from Kadee in 1990 to form a completely independent company. For this reason, products from this company can appear with labels from both enterprises. Due to the nature of production idiosyncrasies and various random factors, the rolling stock from Micro-Trains can have all sorts of interesting variations in both their packaging as well as the products themselves. When acquiring an MTL product it is very important to understand these important production variations that can greatly enhance (or decrease) the value of your purchase.
Item created by: Lethe on 2015-05-31 17:46:30. Last edited by gdm on 2018-04-11 09:14:17
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