Connecticut S Gaugers
For Scale, Hirail and American Flyer S Gauge Model Railroaders The Last New Haven Milk Service?
Milk trains are a popular subject with many modelers,but most milk service on the New Haven ended early because of the growth of trucking and the road net. Boston and Maine and Rutland had milk trains well into the 1950s, but they were largely extinct on the New Haven before W.W.II. With at least one exception.
While doing some research on milk cars on the New Haven I found and re-read the letter and response concerning White Bros. Dairy of North Quincy, Mass. by Warren L. Smith and C.A. Brown in the Vol. 18 #3 of the NHRHTA Shoreliner. By coincidence, a thread on the same topic developed on the Milk Car list on Yahoo, most of the information coming from Ben Brown who is preparing an article or paper on the subject.
In short, a pair of 50 foot wood sided General American Pfaudler milk tank cars leased to White Brothers Dairy were delivered and picked up daily by the New Haven Railroad out of Boston. The cars began their journey in South Ryegate, VT on the shortline Barre & Chelsea RR, transferred to the B&M for the journey to Boston's North Station. From there, the cars were hauled by Union Freight through the streets of Boston to New Haven trackage (behind a boxcab Climax geared engine in the 1930's), then delivered to a siding in Norfolk Downs yard in North Quincy, Mass. on the former Old Colony line. There trucks would empty the tanks and transport the milk to the White Brother's facility some 10 blocks away. One car left Vermont in the late afternoon for early morning delivery to North Quincy. According to Warren L. Smith the cars were picked up each afternoon by a special New Haven train consisting of a Pacific, DL 109 or road switcher and a coach/rider car that ran out from Boston, picked up the car, changed to the inbound track and ran BACKWARDS to Boston. The service began in 1928, and ended sometime between 1947 and 1953.
Why is this of interest to Connecticut S Gaugers? A company called Highball Graphics has produced a decal for these cars in HO and O scales. I contacted them and they will produce it in S as well, for a fee of
$20 to make the scale conversion. Sets to letter one car will be $10 each. The car can be modeled using a Kinsman, Huff and Puff or 'S'cenery Unlimited 50 foot express reefer kit (which I'm sure a number of us have sitting around unbuilt). Leave off the ice hatches, this is a tank car and doesn't have any! Replace the
pre-printed sides with plain scribed wood or (better yet) Evergreen Styrene S passenger siding, paint Pullman green and apply the decals. Now you can combine this car with the AM NH Pacific and a SHS or converted AF passenger car for an authentic New Haven milk train! The artwork can be seen at
Dwight Smith on the Milk Train list notes a photo of the prototype GPEX 892 is on page 88 of the March, 1986 RMC ("Railroad Model Craftsman").
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