Passenger consist arrangement : LUSENET : Southern Railway : One Thread

I'm new to modeling, and have purchased a number of "how-to" (primarily modeling) books as well as subscribing to Model Railroader magazine for the past four years. I'm considering purchasing an eight car set of the Crescent Limited from IHC, both heavy weight and corrugated side passenger cars. (Bless me Father, for I am ignorant) My question is this, what would be the prototypical arrangement of these cars in a typical consist from my home town of New Orleans to New York? The cars listed on IHC's site are as follows: Baggage, Coach, Combine, Diner, 3-2 Observation, Baggage Post Office, 8-1-2 Sleeper 12-1 Sleeper.

-- Michael E. Risher (, January 17, 2002


Other's more expert than I will doubtless weigh in on this thread, but to get the ball rolling I'd suggest that you let us know what particular incarnations of the train interest you. I'm assuming that you are probably most interested in the 1929 and 1949 version which are probably the most familiar. The 1929 train was the classic heavyweight train in two shades of green, while the '49 train was the first streamlined version.

I'd be very careful about using any of the IHC heavyweights - they are regrettably really suitable for the toy train market being largely misshapen and misproportioned copies of the Rivarossi cars that are now available from Walthers.

Now the heavyweight Crescent Limited was an all Pullman train. The makeup was a baggage/club car, an 8-2-1 Pullman, a 14-section Pullman four 10-2 Pullmans and a 3-2 observation. A diner and RPO were added at various points during the run though the Southenr Railway cars operated north of Atlanta. I assume that if a diner was provided out of New Orleans than it and the engine (as well as an RPO if one was used) would have been from the L&N


-- Aidrian Bridgeman-Sutton (, January 17, 2002.

The Crescent Limited was jointly operated from New York to New Orleans and ran over The Pennsylvania Railroad, Southern Railway, Atlanta & West Point; Western Railway of Alabama and Louisville & Nashville. The railroads contributed cars proportional to their mileage for the route -- this means most of the cars were Southern but there were also cars from the others. As already pointed out, the exact cars used changed over time. Just what you use depends on how accurate you wish to be. The IHC cars painted in the two-tone green are easy to come by but are not very accurate. If this doesn't bother you much, it's a good place to start. The paint scheme is accurate only for the very early Crescent (1920s). Photos of the Pullmans used are shown in "Steam, Steel and Limiteds" published by W K Kratville (about 1967, reprinted 1984.) Trains magazine ran an article by Arthur Dublin on The Crescent Limited as part of a series on important name trains. It was probably published around 1985, but maybe around 1967. Kalmbach will sell photocopies of articles that are out of print. These two sources show photographs of each of the cars. The cars were named after notable Southerners. The cars used and some of the names included: 3-2-Observation Patrick Henry, R E Lee, Joel Chandler Harris 10-2 sleeper P G T Beauregard, "Stonewall" Jackson 8-1-2 sleeper William Rufus King 14s Henry W Grady library-baggage L C Q Lamar

During the depression, Southern dropped the fancy paint scheme and the Crescent Limited name and the trains used conventional Pullman green paint and were known only as No. 37 and No. 38. The names of the Pullman cars also changed from time to time.

The Crescent Limited was streamlined in 1949-1950 with mostly Pullman Standard cars. Most of the carsThe best source for car plans, photos, etc. is The Official Pullman Standard Library, vol. 7 (Southeastern Railroads). Other than head-end cars and diners, four basic cars were used: 6 bedroom - 10 roomette pullmans in the "River" series -- there were 46 of these in all. They were named for on-line rivers; some names include Holston River, Ocmulgee River, Rapidan River, Rivanna River, Shenandoah River, York River. The 10-6 Pullman is pretty generic and the IHC car is probably OK 4 bedroom - 14 roomette pullmans in the "Valley" series -- there were 11 of these; I've seen Roanoke Valley, Cahiers Valley. This is a tougher car to find a good model. 2DR-MBR-buffet lounge in the "Crescent" series -- there were 4 of these, Crescent City, Crescent Harbor, Crescent Moon. Observation in the "Royal" series -- 8 cars, including Royal Arch, Royal Court, Royal Palm.

If you want fairly accurate models of these cars, your best bet is Nickel Plate Car Company. They have sold excellent plastic and metal cars that closely match the Crescent Limited cars. Some dealers carry them, but I've bought all of mine direct from the manufacturer or at Southern Railway Historical Association meetings.

You can kit-bash fairly good models of all of these cars starting with commercial kits if you can get good photos from the sources listed.

-- Tom Warne (, January 22, 2002.

In the Pennsylvania Railroad Make-up of Trains dated 9/27/53, the northbound consist for the Crescent (PRR 118) was: 14 roomette-4 double bedroom from Augusta 10-Section, 1 Drawing room, 2 compartment from Charlotte 10 roomette-6 double bedroom (10-6)from Raleigh Two 10-6 sleepers from Asheville 10-6 from Winston-Salem PRR diner from Washington, DC to New York 3 10-6 sleepers from Atlanta 10-6 from Greenville 2 drawing room, 1 master room, buffet, lounge from New Orleans Southern diner from New Orleans 10-6 from Montgomery two 10-6 sleepers from New Orleans 5 double bedroom, lounge, observation from New Orleans

It looks like there were a lot of changes in the consist on the way from New Orleans - only five cars were listed all the way through. The cars in front of the Pennsy diner were from Southern train 32. The cars behind it were from 38, the Crescent.

Pennsy conductors filled out form CT-220, report of cars in passenger trains and listed the car names and/or numbers. If you ever come across any of these from the period 1948 - 1953, I'd be interested in which cars were in the trains.

-- Lou Whiteley (, December 18, 2003.

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