SAL caboose 20910 : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

A newly painted caboose on display in McBee, SC carries SAL markings and #20910. I am umfamilar with the number and styling of this caboose. What is its history?

-- Jim Roquemore (, October 09, 2000


I assume you mean the correct original scheme. They were delivered in orange with black lettering, roof, and underframe. Contact me off list for photo information.

-- Larry Goolsby (, April 02, 2001.

What would be a correct paint scheme for this type of caboose? Does anyone have any pictures?


-- Stuart Hale (, April 01, 2001.

It is definitely a M-5 but not even close to the 4th one built after the merger. Maybe around 130 or 140 after the merger. William Billy

-- William Billy (, March 29, 2001.

OK, so does that make this cabosse an M-5 and about the 4 th one built after the merger?

-- Stuart Hale (, January 19, 2001.

No sooner than I hit the submit button did I see a typo. The ACL cabooses were around 0800 not 0700 as I typed. Then I noted Joe's answer where he said the last ACL one was 0808. I could not remember exactly. Here again, memory failed.

-- Warren Calloway (, November 22, 2000.

This caboose was built after the July 1, 1967 merger date of ACL-SAL merger. At merger time, the ACL M5s were only approaching number 0700, so it was never lettered for ACL. It is originally SCL 0910, to SBD.

-- Warren Calloway (, November 22, 2000.

Gentelmen, I have a slide of the caboose on display at the McBee, SC, station taken in August of 1997. The caboose was in Family Lines gray paint with the red and yellow ribbons at that time. It is an ex-SCL, nee-ACL, M5 caboose. The "other" M5 caboose painted in Seaboard Air Line colors is in Waldo, FL. I have pictures of it also.

-- Larry Platt (, October 24, 2000.

BOYS------BOYS!!!!!! I was very intrigued with this question and even more so in the answers.Since I can't rely on memory anymore I looked. In 1959,the SAL had 43 cabooses with a five digit number! Two of these were still around at merger time. In 1967 the SCL added a "0" in front of all ex-SAL cabooses,giving some a six digit nimber.The ACL cabooses were already prefixed with an "0" from 0580 to 0808.In later years SCL added more cabooses in the M-5,M-6 and M-8 class.The first M-5's began at 0809 and went to 0999,then picked up as 1000-1036 remaining four digits.M-6 class started with 01050 to 01146 all five digits.M-8 class was from 01150 to 01195 all five digits.Seaboard System added a "2" prefix giving a six digit number(this was retained for awhile by CSX) As far as I have been able to determine there was no SAL caboose numbered as your question asks.

-- J Oates (, October 10, 2000.

If the 20910 number is correct, then the caboose is ex-SCL 0910, an M- 5 steel car. Your description seems to match an M-5. I wrote an article for Lines South some years back showing at least one other M- 5 painted for Seaboard, as well as one painted for L&N. ACL converted the first M-5s in 1964 from class O-25 boxcars and SCL continued the rebuild program until 1970. ACL numbers were 0600- 0786, SCL numbers were 0787-01036 (if memory serves). In the Seaboard System (CSX) renumbering, 20000 was added to these numbers. The M-5s were the most numerous class on the SCL roster when cabooses were eliminated and so have turned up preserved in many locations.

-- Larry Goolsby (, October 10, 2000.

Tom, I suspected that this was a "ringer" also. The strange number is not the only unusual feature.The only markings are SEABOARD, the heart, "Taking chances takes lives," and the number. It has four windows, the outer two of which have rounded corners, and the inner two are rectangular. It has the 1950s cupola. I'm not certain whether it is steel, or plywood sheathed. I will check the sideframes in a week or two. In any case, it makes an attractive display. The people of McBee have done a good job of working with what was available.

-- Jim Roquemore (, October 10, 2000.

By "SAL" markings, do you mean the word SEABOARD in extended lettering above the heart logo? The SAL had no cabooses numbered with five digits. SAL caboose numbers are #5200-5700 series over several different types of body style. SCL(Seaboard Coast Line) were also four digit numbered. One clue as to the origin of the caboose at McBee would be to check the railroad initials cast into the truck sideframes. It would help also if you could tell us what type of body the car has, extended vision cupola, bay window, steel or wood body, number of windows per side, etc. From what you've told us so far, this sounds like a "ringer", i.e., the people in McBee have bought a caboose and put some Seaboard lettering on it regardless of the origin of the car.

-- Tom Underwood (, October 10, 2000.

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