MILW Milwaukee Road Print

Hardcoaler Aug 8, 2017

  1. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Some 45 Years ago my mother found this framed Milwaukee Road print at a Chicago garage sale for $5. It's 100% MILW, frame and all. It's in perfect shape with vibrant color, though it's very difficult to photograph through the glass. (The yellow reflection at the bottom is me holding the camera up.) The caption reads Twin Cities Hiawatha Passing Lake Pewaukee Wisconsin. What year would you say? The clothes and diesels might suggest the early '50s?

    MILW Print.jpg
     
  2. MRLdave

    MRLdave TrainBoard Member

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    The locos are FP7's and the paint scheme is the '52 scheme so it would have to be in the 50's some time. Nice find!
     
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  3. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    It would be in the 1952-1955 time frame.

    And look at those head end cars. They were hauling a lot of USPS in those days. Mail deliveries were much faster, too!
     
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  4. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    Wow, great find for sure!! (y)(y)(y)
     
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  5. wcfn100

    wcfn100 TrainBoard Member

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    Why couldn't this be as early as 1948?

    Jason
     
  6. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    There were no F3 or F7 units on their roster in 1948. These should be F7, which came in very late 1949. The paint scheme is simplified from pre-1952. Looks like the one used when the SuperDomes were introduced in 1952.
     
  7. wcfn100

    wcfn100 TrainBoard Member

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    Well that certainly a good reason. :p

    I got too caught up in the paint scheme to think about the locomotive. What I was thinking is that the loco in the pictures doesn't have the emblem on the side of the nose which pre-dates what I think of when we talk about the 1952 scheme.


    Jason
     
  8. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    Listening to all you guys who know history, I'm convinced the MLW was a an exceptional railroad that was destroyed by an incompetent board of directors.
     
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  9. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    At that size, red and orange in combination could blend somewhat. With the milky appearance of the photo, from being captured under glass, it is hard to tell. What they referenced as the "herald" should be seen under the fireman, on the side. But would be quite small, if present. Perhaps Hardcoaler could take a closer look at it for us?

    There were a few variances in those years. One of those was the 1953 changed herald.
     
  10. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    There were many bad decisions made. One was not understanding the company was a long distance bridge carrier, so-called "midwest" to the west coast.
     
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  11. MRLdave

    MRLdave TrainBoard Member

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    Your dates are correct on the F3's and F7's, but the Milwaukee never had 3's OR 7's equipped with steam generators for passenger service (they DID have a couple of RS-1's for switch duty and some RSC-2's and later some GP-9TT's with steam generators)........and the first set of FP7's arrived in mid 1950. As you noted, the paint scheme changed to UP yellow in 1955. The '48 scheme had a second maroon strip at the roof in addition to the one at the windows. I think the single stripe started to appear in 1950, although it's known as the '52 scheme
     
  12. wcfn100

    wcfn100 TrainBoard Member

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    You can see the first head end car has the upper stripe.

    Jason
     
  13. SLSF Freak

    SLSF Freak Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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  14. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    MILW was not always the fastest to get everything repainted. Cars could have easily been a mix of schemes. The Olympian trains got first attention. Train pictured is only a Hiawatha.

    For an example, the O/M/B freight colors were replaced by the O/B, starting in 1952. But the last O/M/B units did not get repainted until 1966-1967.
     
  15. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I looked at the print and there's no herald on the side of the cab under the fireman's window. Lead unit is the 96-C. The B-Unit shows THE MILWAUKEE ROAD on its side. I'll try to bring the print outside and take a better photo of it.
     
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  16. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    That is VERY cool Mike! Thank you.
     
  17. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    96C was an FP7A, new in 1951. That "B" unit was an F7B, which such were quite commonly seen in their passenger service.
     
  18. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I'm far from being an expert on the MILW, but I've read that the high cost of the Pacific Coast Extension led to its bankruptcy in the mid-20's. It also seemed to operate in the shadow of stronger competition in many markets. I've wondered that if deregulation had come a decade sooner and the MILW had been permitted to sell off or abandon its many Midwest branchlines, it might have survived. When I look at rail maps from the 1960s, the quilt of remaining Midwest branches on all roads is amazingly thick. I learned in school that many midwest branches were built with the expectation that no farmer should be more than a day's wagon ride to a railhead and it explains the eventual overbuilding by the Granger roads.
     
  19. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    There are, unfortunately, many falsehoods. Often quoted but poorly researched, is a number nearing $250 million for the Pacific Extension. The actual number was under $100 million. Even after adding the electrification, it's not half of the oft quoted nonsense. And, the electrification paid for itself in less than ten years. It is a tragedy that so many authors simply repeat "common knowledge", instead of doing fact finding.

    One bad decision was buying (1921) the Chicago, Milwaukee & Gary. Debt ridden, the purchase price plus assumed money owed did significant impact. This purchase never paid off. It was little more than an unimportant branch line.

    Seemed. Yes. But not true.

    They for many years had the biggest share of business into Seattle. BTW- The last RR to reach Seattle was... The OR&N (UP), via trackage ownership after the MILW built it all. Common knowledge the MILW was last and had little business there. Both statements long ago proven false. The MILW was a long distance bridge carrier. The too often moans about on line business lose luster, if researched. Long hauls via single carrier make the most money..... They had huge business fed in, in numerous places. Such as the "Golden Triangle" grain in central Montana. Grain in central Washington. Timber industry in western Washington and other areas. Large land and timber ownership- The latter which sales helped keep things solvent into the last half of the 1970's. Solid connections to import cargo from Asia, including autos.

    And the dollar numbers were climbing well into 1977-1978, when Chicago pulled the literal rug out from under the west end. After a couple of harsh winters, where maintenance of everything was impossible, due to lack of people, equipment, supplies and money, the whole thing went to pieces. Which would have happened to ANY other RR under the same circumstances. That sleazy maneuver created the false scenario for abandonment as desired.
     
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  20. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Interesting facts Boxcab -- thank you. The MILW then has some similarities with the PC, where management grew weary of railroading and bled the property of its vitality. In the case of the PC, I think management was primarily interested in realizing gains on the road's real estate portfolio. The PRR set the trend with its sale of the air rights and demolition of Penn Station in New York in the early '60s. All was sold to Madison Square Garden Corp. and PRR tucked $50 Million in its billfold.
     

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