Sunday, October 2, 2011

Steam Locomotive



Welcome to Steam Locomotive week here at OPOD. I was excited by the comments yesterday, as it appears we have some real railroad enthusiasts in our midst. Hopefully they will comment on the technicals of these trains. I will say that I pick the train pictures based on the locomotives I like.  I really like the classic looking ones from about the Civil War time frame. Big smoke stacks, big light on the front, big bell, open cab, and huge cattle guard. I will have to say that this one come close to the ideal in my mind. The picture was taken about 1890 near Queretaro, Mexico. If you click on the picture you can get a better look at it. I also like the picture because is looks like this is actually burning wood, and not coal. I like the passenger cars as well.

DOMESTIC UPDATE:

Handsome Jack and the flock of peacocks are doing great. I think I had kept you up to date this last summer on Lovie and Miss Kitty and their two nests of eggs. Lovie and Miss Kitty both decided to lay their eggs in the peacock palace. Each laid a nest of 4 eggs. Then when Miss Kitty stepped outside, Lovie stole her eggs and she then had a nest of 8 eggs. Miss Kitty was going to have none of that, so she sat on top of Lovie, who was on top of the eggs. Finally, they worked out something where they co-sat on the eggs. Each sitting side by side on top of the large nest. Well, then the eggs hatch and the girls split the babies four and four. Then the next day we notice Lovie has 5 and Miss Kitty has 3. The next day, Lovie tries to take another one, and a fight breaks out. It was not a little scuffle, but was one of those that was going to be a fight to the death, so we realized we had to split them apart. So we put Lovie in a pen with her five babies, and Miss Kitty in her pen her with 3 babies. A few days later one of Miss Kitty's babies escapes and wants in Lovies pen. So, then Lovie had 6 babies, and Miss Kitty had two. Then when we let them out of the pens when the babies got bigger, Miss Kitty roosted on top of the peacock palace with her two babies, and Lovie roosted on my little office with her six babies. After about a week we noticed one of Miss Kitties babies abandoned her and joined Lovie on the office. Now Miss Kitty is down to one baby. After about another week, that last baby abandoned her and started roosting with Lovie. At this point, Miss Kitty then goes over and joins that whole group on the office, and roosts with them, and once again assumes the role of co-mother of the flock. That lasted two nights, and then last night I noticed Lovie kicked Miss Kitty off the office. Lovie has now achieved her desire of having the whole flock of 8 babies. Poor Miss Kitty is roosting in the tree by herself. 

14 comments:

  1. Thta photo is a pretty good optical illusion, too.

    Cover the top half and look at it again.

    At ground level the train appears to be passing through two pillars that are aranged perpendicular to the track. Yet the top show 3 pillars in a row.

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  2. Tex Avery, I did some checking myself and you are right. There were some that did have 8 idlers and 8 drivers on each side for a total of 16 on each side. You have to remember that it was over 50 years ago and with old age comes confusion, along with being addled brained. But they still were beautiful beasts.
    I almost forgot, when I was around ages 3 to 7 years old, my parents owned a 5 story hotel that was right next to the train station in downtown Grand Forks. Our back door opened up right next to the train tracks.

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  3. Those peacocks are so funny.

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  4. Downtown Indy
    Yes I see what you mean.
    They must have had phtoshop back then.

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  5. The aqueduct is interesting to me. If you do a Google Maps search for "De Los Arcos, Querétaro, Qro., Mexico" you can take a street view drive of the road along the aqueduct today.

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  6. The illusion is very cool! If this photo was made in 1890 how old is that aquaduct? It looks old even then. I like how the passengers are all hanging out the window waiting for whatever the problem was to get fixed.

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  7. Queretaro is an interesting town. The aqueduct is a short drive from the Capilla de Maximiliano, a little church built on the execution site of Emperor Maximilian.

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  8. RTD, no worries. I wasn't trying to be rude, I just get a little nit-picky about railroad facts.

    I remember when I was a little kid, there was a big field behind my parent's house, and on the far edge of the field was a railroad crossing. The back room had very big windows, and a piano in it. When I would hear a train coming, I would run into the back room, stand up on the piano bench, and watch the trains go by. I would have never imagined that just short of two decades later, I would be making my living working on trains.

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  9. Mary - more than likely, this was a posed photograph, judging by the train crew on the ground, and all the passengers wanted their fifteen minutes of fame. This was fairly common early in railroading, and several great family memories have come from photographs of railroad crew members posed with a train they were working on. It's a tradition that has almost entirely died, but I decided to revive so that years down the road, my family could see what I did for a living. Here's an example of such:

    http://i51.tinypic.com/9puqu9.jpg

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  10. This may have been an 1890's photo... but I rode one of those cars in 1966. Sort of... Remember the great airplane strike of 1966. Nothing was flying. In order to get from Witchita Falls, TX to Seattle on leave... we rode trains. The passenger cars we rode from Texas to Denver were just like these. Great memory.

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  11. I feel sorry for Miss Kitty. I think Lovie needs a new name: Greedy!
    PJM:
    Is 'Lovie' Miss Kitty's mother? I've forgotten.

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  12. Nice old train photo. I'll swear these are the passenger cars I rode in 1966. The great airplane strike was going on and we could only get away from USAF Medical Tech school in Witchita Falls to Seattle by riding the train. These cars look exactly like those pressed into service that we rode into Denver. Thanks for the memory!

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  13. "Huge cattle guard" Mark Twain once questioned the reason for the guards because he said that these trains were not fast enough to over take a cow.

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  14. It may be the train stacks go under the aquaduct at an angle, so the train would be in front of one tower and behind the other.

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