locked Re: Silverside gon slide on ebay

Bill Schafer

This photo was taken probably on August 6 or 7 1970 at what was left of Terminal Station, Birmingham, when Pullman-Standard’s 200,000th boxcar, SOU 555055, was on display (right in picture) in the three-color paint scheme. This car exists, restored in its original colors, at NCTM at Spencer, N.C. 

I was in Birmingham on August 7, having arrived from Washington on one of the last Birmingham Specials that morning  (via Bristol-Chattanooga), and was waiting to return on the Southern Crescent. I spent the layover in SOU’s Exhibit Car (left in photo). The Silversides was on display along with 550555 (and maybe a few other SOU cars) to highlight the variety of modern freight cars available to shippers. Several members of Southern’s customer service engineering staff were there too, I guess to explain how SOU could custom design a freight car if there was sufficient demand. Much more information on SOU 550555 and the Birmingham Special in 2018-4 TIES.

At the time, I was still a poor college kid and as a result, film was a significant budget item. If I had to do it all over again, I would have taken photos of each of the freight cars on display that day plus the Exhibit Car plus the people in it. As it is, though, the only photo I took was of 550555, with the very end of the Silversides in the frame. 

—Bill Schafer

On Jul 16, 2020, at 02:35, Jason Greene <jason.p.greene@...> wrote:

I’m gonna concur with Senior Graham on this one. Enlarging the picture it is clearly black. 

Jason Greene 

On Jul 16, 2020, at 12:35 AM, Robert Graham <rgraham2@...> wrote:

The lettering on SOU 1116 sure looks black to me. FWIW, I saw and photographed more of the 1960's era all-aluminum cars (4000 series cement covered hoppers, 6200 series 3 bay covered hoppers and Big Johns) with black lettering than with green lettering. While I did not see that many silversides coal gondolas, and those I saw were early on all with the red lettering, later as these cars aged and the aluminum car bodies darkened, it was common to see them in the late SOU era lettered in white. 

Bob Graham


From: "Jim King" 
To: ModelingTheSouthern@SouthernRailway.groups.io, main@SouthernRailway.groups.io
Sent: Wednesday July 15 2020 3:08:05PM
Subject: [SouthernRailway] Silverside gon slide on ebay

Looks to have been repainted at Coster prior to this 1970 display (trucks sideframes also silver).  Lettering is green.  Were they repainted green when shopped from original vermilion?  Recent discussion here indicates no rhyme/reason for vermillion or green but I suspect vermilion’s fading, especially under abuse from coal service, might have played a roll in that.  Could it be that Claytor liked green more than vermillion and, as he rose to “power” over Brosnan, he started to influence colors like he did when converting boxcar-red cabooses to red?
Jim King

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