Coast Line Depot signs : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

I know many ACL stations had purple WOODEN signs, but I've seen some that also had METAL purple signs. Was there some kind of distinction as to which kind of sign went on which kind of station? Thanks, Danny Harmon Tampa

-- Danny Harmon (, June 11, 2001


When I obtained the Pinellas Park station sign from SCL at the time of the station's demolishment,the field(surrounding the white letters) was painted a non-descipt green. After removing and cleaning,the field appeared to be deep purple to me, rather than blue. I assumed that the sign color was to complement the "Champ Davis"purple of the ACL locos and rolling stock. I can only assume that the green paint- over occured when the locos were changed to the black/yellow scheme.

-- paul coe (, June 17, 2001.


I can only speak of the coast line at Weldon, NC. The signs for the freight house were painted purple, just as the trim colors were. The building was painted white. The upstairs passenger platforms, elevator shaft, and waiting rooms were also painted white with purple trim. The signs were wooden and when freshly painted,a deep purple color with white letters and the river signs were metal with a very rich purple color with white letters. As time passed, these signs began to fade to something very close to the Life-like E-8 colors.

Hope this will help answer the question. As for a blue color, unless it was a mix that I don't know, the paint in the buckets these guys had was the purpleist blue I ever remember seeing.


-- Larry Denton (, June 17, 2001.

Thanks to everyone for all your great answers. It makes sense to know that the signs were BLUE and not Purple. And that there were no apparent distinction between placement of wooden or metal signage. Danny Harmon

-- Danny Harmon (, June 17, 2001.

Based on the ACL structures I've seen, the structure type does not seem to have any bearing on the application of metal signs. More likely, when the original wooden sign deteriorated beyond repair or if a depot was upgraded or replaced with a newer depot, the wood sign was replaced with a baked-enamel metal sign.

Regarding colors: Prior to the early-mid twenties depot signs were wood and painted white with black roman lettering. Thereafter, if the wooden sign was retained it was painted dark blue with white roman lettering. As specified in ACL drawings, the baked enamel metal signs are a "smalted" (refering to the deep cobalt blue color).

Have heard others mention purple depot signs but have never come across one. Not sure if this is another color variation or simply the result of fading due to being exposed to sunlight/elements for 40+ years.

In a similar vein, anyone recall the late 40s/early 50's baked-enamel ACL/C&WC Right of Way-No Tresspassing signs or the large River Name signs located at bridges crossing major streams? By the late 70s/early 80s, these signs appeared a faded reddish purple in color. Anyone recall if they were always purple or if they were deep blue when new? Age and exposure could possibly explain the purple vs. blue coloration observed in depot signs. Hope this helps.

-- Buddy Hill (, June 13, 2001.

I am no expert on this (or anything else, for that matter) but the few ACL station signs I have seen, still in place, appear to be a deep blue, rather than purple. There is a very definite difference between the blue and the purple when seen together. The last time I drove through Garland, NC, about two years ago, the blue sign was still on one of the ends.

-- Sandy Bridges (, June 13, 2001.

Metal signs were used in later years.

-- Joseph Oates (, June 12, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ