Color Schemes and Time Periods : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

Hi all

Got a two part question here but the parts are somewhat related. According to a post from Larry Goolsby sometime ago, ACL had the purple paint scheme from 1937 to 1959. I would assume then sometime after 1959 it went to a different paint scheme, maybe black. Then the merger between ACL and SAL occured. Okay here are the questions. How far apart was the end of the purple paint scheme and the merger into SCL? And would there ever been a time in that history when one might have seen Purple ACL and Black SCL engines at the same time? I get really confused with time lines and such so please be patient with my dumb questions.

Thanks all

-- John Buckley (, March 18, 2003


Prof. Savchak is correct, of course. A couple of footnotes: there's some evidence that Fs and GPs were repainted black starting in late 1957 but that the change for E units didn't start until 1958 - why I don't know. Anyway, units were painted black at a steady pace and all were finished about 1961. The SCL merger was 7-1-67, so there were no ACL purple diesels around then. But....second footnote: ACL leased several Columbia Newberry & Laurens (ACL subsidiary that used the ACL scheme) GP7s in the mid-60s and placed them into the general ACL pool. They were still in purple, and I know some were not repainted into ACL black until 1966 or so, and maybe not until right after the merger. Warren Calloway's diesel book addresses this point I think, but I don't have my copy handy. Anyway, it's possible a purple "ACL family" engine was on SCL just for a short time, if the repainting didn't occur before 7-1-67.

-- Larry Goolsby (, March 18, 2003.

A good source on the paint schemes is in Larry Goolsby's ACL Passenger Service book. Briefly, the ACL went from purple to black on its diesels in 1957. This scheme lasted for approximately 10 years until the 1967 SCL merger. I will let others answer as to whether there were any diesel units around in purple at the time of the SCL merger. I do know that there still were some faded passenger cars- mostly baggage cars, still in purple when the two roads merged.

-- Michael W. Savchak (, March 18, 2003.

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