Wednesday, February 27, 2019

BN Train Briefs

From the NP Telltale Email Group

BN train briefs

May 18, 2008

Local Freight Trains-Portland Division Revised 4-1-83

Pasco-Walla Walla-Lewiston Area------Trainmaster Distric 1
Local Train-----On Duty-Freq------Territory
61810 WWV Local 0830 DXSa-Su W Walla-Milton Freewater & Ret A
61810 WWV Local As Reqd. College Place-Baker-Langdon
& Ret B

61613 Pasco-Dixie Local 0900 Mo-We-Fr Pasco to Walla Walla,
Dixie & Ret.
61811 Snake River Swr. 1500 DXSu Pasco-Finley-Yellepit & Ret. A
61811 Snake River Swr. DXSu Pasco-Martindale-Burbank & Ret. B
61811 Snake River Swr. DXSu Pasco-Kennewick & Ret. C
61811 Snake River Swr. As Reqd.--Kennewick-Richland & Ret.
61817 Riparia Turn 1930 DXMo Pasco-Riparia & Ret.
61819 Pendleton Turn 0800 DXSu Pasco-Pendleton & Ret. A
61819 Pendleton Turn As Reqd. Smeltz-Athena & Ret. B

Connell-Wheeler-Cheney Area-------Trainmaster District 2
61826 Connell-Whlr Turn 1000 DXSu Connell-Wheeler & Ret. A
As Reqd. Bassett Jct-Schrag & Ret. B
61828 Pasco-Bruce Turn 1500 DXSu Pasco-Bruce & Ret. A
As Reqd. Mesa-Basin City & Ret. B
61823 Wheeler-Othello Turn 1800 DXSa Wheeler-Othello Lake &
Ret. A
61421 Wheeler-Moses Lake 0700 DXSu Wheeler-Moses Lake & Ret. A
Turn 0700 As Reqd. Wheeler-Royal City & Ret. B

Yakima-Toppenish-Grandview Area------Trainmaster District 3
61832 White Swan Local 0830 Tu-Th-Su Yakima-Mabton & Ret. A
61832 White Swan Local As Reqd. Toppenish-White Swan & Ret. C
61835 NYV Local 0830 Mo-We-Fr Yakima-Moxee City & Ret. A
61835 NYV Local 0830 Mo-We-Fr Yakima-Naches-Tieton & Ret. B
61833 15th Sub div. Lcl 0800 As Reqd. To Pasco-Buena & Ret.


May 18, 2008

Local Freight Trains-Spokane Division Revised 4-1-83

51882 Quincy Spud Loc. 0900 DXSa-Su Wenatchee-Quincy A.
51882 Quincy Spud As Reqd. Columbia River-Bon Spur & Ret. B.
51881 Quincy Spud DXSa-SU Quincy-Wenatchee C.
51881 Quincy Spud As Reqd. Columbia River -Bon Spur & Ret. D.
51898 Quincy Spud As Reqd. Quincy-Ephrata & Ret. E.
51886 Alcoa Loc. 2100 Wenatchee-Rock Island & Ret. A.
51886 Alcoa Loc. As Reqd. Rock Island-Bon Spur & Ret. B.
51888 Alcoa Loc 2nd Trip As Reqd. Wenatchee-Rock Island & Ret. C.
51888 Alcoa Loc 2nd Trip As Reqd. Rock Island-Bon Spur & Ret. D.
51690 WO Local 1700 Tu-Th-Sa Wenatchee-Oroville
51691 WO Local 1500 Mo-We-Fr Oroville-Wenatchee
51894 Mansfield Turn As Reqd. Wenatchee-Mansfield & Ret.

51671 CW Loc 1030 Mo-We-Fr Yardley-Coulee City A.
51672 CW Loc 0630 Tu-Th-Sa Coulee City-Yardley B.
51672 CW Loc As Reqd. Davenport to Eleanor Industry C.
51672 CW Loc Tu-Th-Sa Cheney-Babb & Ret. D.
51803 Babb Turn 0700 DXSu Erie St-(Spokane)-Babb & Ret. A
51803 Babb Turn Tu-Th Latah Junction-Geiger Field & Ret. B
51619 Yardley-Pullman Loc 1300 Mo-Th Yardley-Pullman A.
As Reqd. Mt. Hope B.
51620 Pullman-Yardley Loc 0700 We-Sa. Pullman-Yardley A.
As Reqd. Palouse-Grinnell-Viola- B.
As Reqd. Rosalia-Balder C.
51873 Pullman-Julietta Loc Tu-Fr Pullman-Genessee-Julietta
51847 WIM Local 0800 DXSa-Su Potlatch-Palouse-Boville & Ret.

51842 Coeur D'Alene 0930 DXSa-Su Post Falls-Coeur D'Alene & Ret.
51801 Athol Turn 0400 As Reqd. Yardley-Hauser-Athol & Ret.
51816 Bonner Ferry Loc 0630 DXSa-Su Sandpoint-Crossport & Ret.
51821 Newport Loc 0730 DXSa-Su Newport-Sandpoint & Ret.
51846 Green Acres Loc As Reqd. Ydly-Erie St-Post Falls 7th Sub.
51819 Sandpoint Turn 1900 DXSa Sandpoint-Yardley & Ret.
51820 Sandpoint Turn 2300 DXSa Yardley-Sandpoint


May 18, 2008

51844 Velox Loc 0830 DXSu Yardley-Velox-Athol & Ret. A.
Sa May run Hauser Jct-CDA & Ret. B.
51827 Chewelah Turn 0830 DXSa-Su Chewelah-Arden-Loon Lake & Ret.
51826 Kettle Falls Swr 1200 DXSu Colville-Barstow & Ret. A
51821 Kettle Falls Swr 1200 As Reqd. Kettle Falls B.
51832 Kettle Turn 1200 DXSa Yardley-Kettle Falls & Ret.
51831 Kettle Turn 0030 DXSu Kettle Falls-Yardley
51834 Mead Turn 0630 Mo-We-Fr Hillyard-Dean & Ret. (Sw Eng)
51848 Grand Forks Turn 0800 DXSa Kettle Falls-Danville & Ret.
**The following locals not operative due to track washout and
BN embargo issued.**
51622 Nelson Loc 0900 0700 Mo-Th Kettle falls-Salmo A.
51621 Nelson Loc 0500 We-Sa Salmo-Kettle Falls B.
51823 Ketl-Danville Turn 0900 We Kettle Falls-Danville & Ret. C.
51623 Republic Loc 0700 Tu & Fr Republic-Kettle Falls B.
51624 Republic Loc 0900 Mo & Th Kettle Falls-Republic A.
51825 Salmo-Nelson Turn 0500 Tu & Fr Salmo-Nelson & Ret. C.

51802 Kalispell Tfr 0800 Mo-We-Fr Whitefish-Somers & Ret. A.
51802 Kalispell Tfr As Reqd. Columbia Falls-Conkelley & Ret. B
51804 Whitefish East Loc 1430 DXSa-Su Whitefish-Conkelley & Ret.A
51804 Whitefish East Loc As Reqd. Conkelley-Coram & Ret. B.
51807 Eureka Turn 0800 Tu-Th-Sa Whitefish-Eureka & Ret. A.
51807 Eureka Turn As Reqd. Stryker-Fisher & Ret. B.
51812 Libby Logger 0630 DXSa-Su Troy-Fisher River-Everett A.

51400's=Road Switchers 51500's=Exa trips of 51400's
51600's=Straightaway Locals 51700's= Exa Trips of 51600's
51800's=Turnaround Locals 51900's=Work Trns,Helpers, Light Engs
DX=Daily Except
*=Changes & Additions Since Previous List
& Ret=And Return to Origin
---SW=Switch Crew (1 Time-On Duty;2 times Inclusive Hours of Service)
Letters A-B-C-D-E-F Indicate Trips of one Crew


Tuesday, February 26, 2019

CW Branch Last Telegraphed Train Order Discussion

From the NP Telltale Email Group

Last telegraphed train order

May 6, 2011

On May 6, 1982, the last Morse code train order issued in the U.S. or Canada was sent to the operator at Whitehall, MT on the Burlington Northern.

Do you know when Morse telegraph use ended on various lines around your area?

I know that in the Spokane area the BN [ex-NP] CW Branch had telegraphy between Cheney and Davenport and maybe Coulee City until the early 1970s. Spokane still has an active Morse telegraph club, led by L. R. Keith and Del Klakken. I hope they will set up at the IERHS train museum open house at the Spokane Fairgrounds June 10 and/or 11.

Also on this date in history: May 6, 1910 -- The federal Accident Report Act requires railroads to file a report of all accidents with the Interstate Commerce Commission. Compliance was spotty in the early years. These reports can be helpful when you find old wreck pictures.

[These listings are from Mark Tomlonson's DailyRRhist site.]

Mike Denuty

May 8, 2011

The last use of telegraph I remember on the Tacoma Division was on the South
Bend branch. Orders were sent by telegraph to Pe Ell to fix up the Chehalis Western trains running to Millburn.

Jim F.

Mike Denuty & List - It would be nice to nail down some verification that this indeed was the last Morse train order - it might not have been. I recall a blurb in BN News at some point about a Morse wire still being in service between Spokane and Cheney and probably down the P&L branch. The article cited the quaintness of the system being in existence and my guess is it was only used for message traffic from & to SF relay office rather than occasional train order by dispatchers, but you never know.

I do know that there still was a Morse circuit in service on the Milw Coast Div until 1975. I used it one week to send a message from our BN office at Maple Valley to Milw Chicago via MA Tacoma relay; the following week I had a similar message to send and the wire was dead. Finis. One of the Milwaukee dispatchers, Don Lahr, sensing this was coming told me that one of those nights very soon when he was not real busy he would send me the various orders for No 200 via morse and we could tape-record the session, but alas the wire was discontinued before we could execute our plan. Curses foiled again. // Dave

May 08, 2011 7:52 PM

Dave XXXX and all:

The key to this discussion is "telegraphed train order" -- not the use of
telegraphy. My experience was that railroad telegraphy still existed in the
late 1960s/early 1970s, but on the NP Idaho Division train orders were not
to be telegraphed unless the phone lines were down.

"On May 6, 1982, the last Morse code train order issued in the U.S. or
Canada was sent to the operator at Whitehall, MT on the Burlington
Northern." I got this information from Mark Tomlonson's This Day in Railroad
History Yahoo group site. I will contact him, but it sounds right from
materials that I have somewhere around here.

I believe both the NP P&L [Palouse & Lewiston] and CW [Central Washington]
branches had Morse telegraphy into the BN era, but not as late as 1982. I do
not have the specifics on the P&L, but the following is what I wrote at
SpokaneRH [Spokane Railroad History] in response to a question about
telegraphy on the CW Branch.

"I was a student operator breaking in at the NP Cheney depot in the late
1960s. Most communications were by phone, with Western Union by teletype.
However, telegraph lines were still in place and most of the regulars
[agent-operator Del Roberts and the "trick" operators] still used telegraphy
for some complex messages between Cheney, Spokane and Yardley.

In addition, the agents at Davenport and Coulee City still preferred
telegraph to the often-interrupted NP "message phone" open line. Just about
every morning they telegraphed Cheney with their "yard check" [car report],
anticipated business, weather conditions and whatever else.Since I did not
have any telegraphy experience, Del Roberts taught me to send the message,
"Del not here. Use phone."

"About 3-4 years later, we heard that BN was taking down the telegraph

Mike Denuty

Friday, February 22, 2019

Thursday, February 21, 2019

1951 Million Dollar Mile View

Before the Million Dollar Mile was constructed.

That's likely the little "town" called Rimrock seen in the middle.

April 1, 1951

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Thursday, February 7, 2019

1944 Hanford Head On Collision

Images courtesy of

The idea behind this collision was to study the dynamics of what would happen to some  radioactive stuff if it was in a collision.

Edit: It was suggested this may not have been an accident.  Richard Olson adds:  "I don’t think that it was a staged incident; noting the weather, the materials loaded on the cars, and their trend for accidents on site besides the location I believe this occurred."