Steel SAL Rebuilt Cabooses : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

There is an unnumbered caboose on display in Gainesville GA. It has been posted on the survivors list with a photo. I had it in my mind that it was plywood, but I went and touched it today to confirm it is steel (I pass it several times a week, but hadn't stopped to look since the kids got "to big" to go play on the caboose).

There is no number, only a crudely painted SAL logo.

It has a "9/25" build date on it (assuming that is correct) and given it doesn't have the diagonal steel bracing on the cupola, my guess is that it one of the cars built by Newport News Shipping in 1925 (# 5274-5303). Also it has "GA Div" on it.

It also has a 1973 repack date on it, and the brake gear has "SCL" markings. At least that does prove it's part of the family.

It is located next to GM 209 (ex SAL Russian decapod) and funds have just been approved by the city to refurbish both.

My question is this - does anyone know the details of when/why the SAL rebuilt wood cabooses to steel? In the several books I have, there is not one picture of these cars in steel. If it was post merger, then did they retain their SAL paint/numbers - or were they painted in SCL markings?

Any light that can be shed on this would be appreciated.


-- Bill Parks (, October 13, 2004


I meant to say the number may also have been stenciled on the truck bolster, not frame.

-- Larry Goolsby (, October 13, 2004.

Bill, SAL did rebuild at least a couple of its wood cabooses with steel sides. One was the 5241, which if memory serves is the one now on display at Hamlet NC. The one in Gainesville makes 2. One other way you might find the original number is to look carefully at the underframe, where the number may have been stenciled. Also the number may have been stenciled on the truck frame. Keep us posted on what you find.

I am not sure when these rebuilds took place.

Regarding repainting for SCL, the 5241 was repainted into the SCL orange/black scheme and was renumbered to 05241.

-- Larry Goolsby (, October 13, 2004.

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