Heavyweight passenger car colors

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I have a question concerning SR colors for heavyweight passenger cars. Obviously, most SR folks are aware of the two-tone Sylvan green/[Virgina] apple green scheme used on the Cresent Limited starting in the late 1920's. What I am curious about is the color scheme for passenger trains before the Cresent colors came out, (my favorite era of modeling interests) and on trains other than the Cresent after the two-tome scheme. To sum up:

1. What color were SR passenger cars, say in the early 1920's?

2. Where Pullman cars painted the same or left alone in Pullman green?

3. What color were SR passenger cars in the late 1920's - 1930's, after the Cresent Limited came out with its two-tone scheme?

4. Did any other famous-named SR passenger trains, say the Queen and Cresent Limited, receive the two-toned green scheme?

I've seen some Black & White photos of pre-Cresent Limited SR passenger cars in a photocopy of an article on the history of the Cresent Limited in the now out-of-print book, Some Classic Trains, but it is difficult for me to discern a probable color based on a shade of black. Before I saw the article, I always had the understanding that other SR passenger cars were painted Sylvan green. But now I am not so sure. Anybody have any clues or authoritative sources?

-- Kenneth Selvidge (kenneth.selvidge@gtri.gatech.edu), July 16, 1998


Kenneth--here are some comments that were part of a duscussion I had with several SRHA guys last year. Basically it looks as though Southern heavyweights were Pullman Green except for the 3 years of the 2-tone scheme. One thing to be aware of is that the official change from gold leaf to Dulux for passenger cars was on 2/1/34. On that date stripes were also omitted from the bottom of the car sides. Also, after WW2 they went to the gothic lettering in dulux gold (yellow) even on heavyweights. This material cam from Jack Wyatt--you may want to contact him at cjwyatt@wavegate.com, he's doing a lot of passenger car research in the SRHA archives. The only other different schemes that I know of besides the 2 tome SC was that used on the trailer cars behind the self-propelled cars (Goldenrod, Fighting Joe Wheeler, etc.) which were green and imitation aluminum.

1. Southern used Dulux Gold ( looks yellow ) lettering as well as what Champ Decals has always referred to as Bronze Gold ( whatever that is ). Mostly in the Futura demi-bold Gothic lettering style that matched the black lettering on the lightwts in the post WW2 years.

2. The two-tone Crescent scheme only lasted 3 years or so and became a victim of the Depression. Most pix you see of the Crescent in it's elegant ( heavyweight ) garb it's Pullman Green. And why not... all the cars, except the RPO'S, Baggage and Diners WERE Pullman owned!

-- Larry Puckett (lpuckett@geocities.com), July 16, 1998.

Dear Sir,

I believe I can supply a partial answer to your questions. The Southern's heavyweight green was called "Pullman Green No. 4", which was what is commonly referred to today as "Pullman Green" with a slight variation in tint.

Each railroad had their own version of Pullman Green and no. 4 happened to be Southern's. This is not much known information, as moswt of the photos from that era are of course, black and white, and absolutley no difference can be detected from a study of them.

Yours truly, Ben Wheeler

-- Ben Wheeler (member0153@aol.com), December 01, 1998.

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