What were the marker light colors on the oil markers used on C&S cabooses and passenger cars?
Were they always the same or did they change over the years?
I've been told that the D&RGW used amber forward and side with red to the rear. Later, the colors were changed to green forward and side, red to rear. Is this correct (paging Pat Student)? If so, when did the change occur?
Every C&S modeler should have an Burlington Lines Operating Rule book. The information pertained within them is invaluable. Mine is dated 1919. Remember that these are operating signals. So the position of them would change for the particular situation. The C&S lanterns were green and red. At least in 1919 they were. If I find the time I will scan the pages regarding marker lamp signals.
Hi Jim --
A quick check of my 1906 D&RG rule book (Rule 19) shows that they were using green forward and side with red to the rear at that time (except when in the clear on a siding, then green forward, side and rear). I don't have an earlier source to confirm when or if amber was used, but perhaps Pat or someone else can provide some additional context.
I can't specifically answer your question; my rule books are too old or too new.
Based on the 1891 rule book, I'd believe that they were green from at least then. Safety items, like this, rarely change once established.
The following is from the 1891 D&RG rule book.
33. Each train while running must display two green flags by day and two green lights by night, one on each side of the rear of the train, as markers to indicate the rear of the train. Freight trains will display an additional green light in the cupola. Yard engines will not display markers.
When attached to mixed or freight trains, engines shall display, from top of cab, a green light toward the rear.
34. Each train running after sunset, or when obscured by fog or other cause, must display the headlight in front, and two red lights in the rear. Freight trains shall display an additional red light in the cupola. Yard engines must display two green lights instead of red, except when provided with a headlight on both front and rear.
The only reference to a yellow light I found is in a modern Union Pacific rule book. "Where their use is authorized, markers displaying yellow instead of green may be used and must be respected the same as green lights." No idea as to the details of the authorization.
This is curious, Pat. As part of my perseverating about what C&S location to model in HOn3, after my move to Texas in a few years, the thought of Leadville in 1924-25, before the 3rd rail was pulled, seemed attractive.
On impulse, I bought a Blackstone long caboose, the number 0505, lettered for the D&RGW on the letter board and only the small Gothic numerals, no herald. The plus side of the model is that it had DCC lighting and markers installed by the previous owner.
Both the markers that Blackstone supplies with the caboose as detail parts, and the working markers that had been installed, were amber to front and side and red to rear. The Blackstone folks seem pretty nit-picky about all the details on their offerings, so it seems that at least some folks believe that the D&RGW used amber/red caboose markers. I don't believe that lens arrangement was all that unusual; I know the Santa Fe used that color arrangement during the steam era.
But I have yet to find a reference for caboose (or passenger car) marker colors. Sloan's chapter on cabooses in his freight car book doesn't discuss it. Markers aren't mentioned in Grandt's Narrow Gauge Pictorial V on cabooses either. Mike Danneman's wonderful passenger car books -- nada . . .
"Bill M." opined: Caboose markers on the D&RGW after the mid-late 1930's had three amber and one red lens with the red to the rear. My source is a 1938 D&RGW rule book and a pair of original D&RGW narrow gauge caboose markers which I own.
"Rod" noted: The above answer I believe is correct for the period from 1938 and later. Prior to the 1938 Rulebook the lens to the front and side would display green and red to the rear, unless on a siding (in the clear) to be passed by another train, then the orientation of the markers was adjusted to show green to the front, side and rear (Rule 19 from the 1924 D&RGW Rule Book)
Rod's observation seems to agree with Pat's info from the 1891 rule book and Geoff's from the 1906 rule book..
Still, I haven't found any other references for something as simple as markers. I assume that passenger and locomotive rear markers would be the same, for any railroad at any specific time.
One other question: Rick notes that locomotives carried white signals or flags when running extra, and green if a 2nd section of the same train was following (no markers/flags on regularly scheduled trains).
But what about light engines? When one or more helpers were cut out of an eastbound train at Kenosha after dark, to run light to Denver, the markers on the tenders would display red to rear, green to outside, correct?
Did light engines always run extra? For example, if C&S 65 ran light down Platte Canon at night, would it have white markers on the locomotive and red/green on the tender? In other words, is a light engine considered and extra train, with markers/flags as such?
This may sound OCD, but tiny LEDs are allowing lamps of all scales to be "lit". My friend Dale Kreutzer models the RGS in 1928-1929, when it was a division of the D&RGW. He is already installing working tender markers on his locomotives, in addition to the front markers--he chose green/red for the tender markers, looks like he guessed right.
Since the subject of D&RGW marker colors came up here— From about 1937, the D&RGW used yellow to front and side, and red to the rear. I know this based on a period rule book and a set of original D&RGW caboose markers I once had. Prior to 1937, I believe they used green to front and side, and red to the rear. But on this earlier combination, I am not as sure— would be best to confirm with an earlier D&RG(W) rule book.
I’m glad to get this information on the C&S practice.
I'll have a look but I doubt ever was a picture taken in colour that would show the arse end anyway.
Since I was around in loco service when we still had Kero Side and Tail lamps on our Van's I'll bet that the C&S never lit their Markers during the daylight hours, the kerosene lamp wouldn't output enough light anyway, just like they never (or hardly ever) ran their Locomotive Headlights and classification lamps during the day.
Great photo at Sargents -- by the early 1950's even the narrow gauge was using the reflective metal rectangular markers as "flags"; on the D&RGW sure enough they were still yellow (amber).
During my brief career as a brakeman, the Rock Island used the same style of caboose marker, day and night, but they were red to the rear and green to the front. On my first trip north out of Ft Worth, working the rear of the train, the conductor had to remind me to put up the caboose markers -- "We're not a train until you do!" I don't remember ever changing the markers to green to the rear, when we were clear in a siding though.
Chris' link above walks me back to a time before the whiners on the NGDF
booted me off for suggesting the self-appointed Internet Armchair C&T Directors
actually go to Chama and do some work, rather than just b!tch about how those
doing the work "need to be doing it".
Anyway, ... I explained this marker light/flag thing all back then:
"I believe the yellow markers indicate tuna fish sandwiches with carrot slices
and a piece of raisin pie for lunch in the caboose. A combo rarely seen like this."
That means a C&S locomotive, running light at night, would have all sorts of lit up markers in different colors. By day, as Chris points out, it would have white flags up front and red flags on the tender rear.