Passenger Cars of the South Park

B-M-X #43 & #44 - Page 2


 U.P. 1885  DL&G 1889  C&S 1899  C&S 1906
 #43  #1301  #1301  #114  Baggage-mail #13
#44 #1302 #1302 #115 Burned 13 Feb '06

C&S Baggage Car #115

(4) C&S baggage-mail-express car #115 at Denver, 1900. Still had its end platforms and door. Photo at Digerness1-64(u), Ferrell/C&S-28, Ferrell/SoPk-292, Forrest-152 and Wagner-41(u).

HISTORY (Continued)

Both cars were rebuilt in 1905 and the end platforms removed. This provided both security, since there was no longer a door to enter from adjoining cars, and safety, since end platforms were the most fragile part of the wooden cars (see article on the Miller Hook and Miller Platform). This was probably also when these cars stopped being used for express service (at the 1906 renumbering #114 is designated simply baggage-mail).

A fire in the 7th Street shops in Denver in February of 1906 destroyed several cars, among which was baggage-mail car #115. #114 apparently was not effected, as it was soon renumbered #13.

In 1912 the Post Office created standards for mail cars, and baggage-mail cars #10-13 were rebuilt with narrow gauge standard 15'-0" mail compartments. Prior to this rebuilding, the mail sorting cases were arranged in a “U” shape with its bottom against the end wall of the car. This may have been for security, so someone could not get in from the car's end platform. It also explains why the early photos show the window at the mail end of the car between the door and the end of the car. The new Railway Mail Service standard called for just the opposite: the bottom of the “U” was to be against the amidships bulkhead, thus securing access from that side, and end platforms were removed. This explains why in the later photos the windows in the mail section were inboard of the mailroom door.

Baggage-mail car #13 may have been rebuilt again in 1915 as part of the C&S general rebuilding program. It saw extensive service in ensuing years as a regular part of the run from Denver to Leadville, and was part of the last regular passenger train between those cities.

In 1939, while other cars were being dismantled, baggage-mail #13 was repainted in parent Chicago Burlington & Quincy livery and sent with coach #76 and 2-6-0 #9 to the New York World’s Fair.

C&S baggage-RPO #13 at Denver, 1939

(5) C&S #13 all dolled up to party at the New York World's Fair, 12 March 1939. Note that the mailroom windows are now inboard of the mailroom door. This was part of the 1912 rebuild required by the Railway Mail Service. Photo by Otto C. Perry.

After the New York fair, the loco and two cars were stored at the Burlingtons Aurora, Illinois, shops. This ensemble—together with business car #911—was used at the Chicago Railroad Fair in 1948/49. After the Chicago fair they were all stored again until 1957 when they were moved to the Black Hills Central Railroad at Hill City, South Dakota (then owned by the Burlington). In 1988, the Burlington Northern donated them to the Colorado Historical Society, and they were moved to the Georgetown Loop Railroad at Silver Plume, Colorado.

Deadwood Central train at Chicago Railroad Fair

(6) C&S mogul #9, baggage-mail #13, coach #76 and some "Dolly Vardens" at the Chicago Railroad Fair, 1949. From a post card sold at the fair. (Hayes Hendricks collection. Also in b/w at Wagner-44(u).


04 August 2006

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