moderated Re: Southern "Package Car" Services
When I went to work for Southern Railway in Greensboro in 1971, a few vestiges of package car service still existed, although I didn’t appreciate them at the time.toggle quoted messageShow quoted text
Southern apparently turned over its remaining LCL business sometime in the 1960s to independent freight forwarders [if there’s any files on this in the SRHA Archives, this should be part of an LCL article], which received, consolidated, and distributed the freight, loaded and unloaded the cars at facilities they [probably] rented from the Southern, and were served by some of the hottest trains on the division. The company in Greensboro was Western Carloading, just south of Pomona Yard. All I ever remember seeing at that facility were 40’ boxcars, and they frequently were forwarded south on the front of 219, which was the hot PotYd-New Orleans rail-highway train. (153, the equally hot all-merchandise PotYd-New Orleans freight didn’t normally stop at Pomona, but if 219 was on time, it stopped there to pick up pigs; if it was running late, 159 made the pickup and forwarded the cars to Spencer. If 159 was running late, the Thomasville Switcher, if memory serves, made a special run to Pomona, grabbed 219’s pickup, and forwarded it to Spencer, where 219 changed crews and routinely picked up and set off cars anyway.)
Sears had a large rail-served facility north of downtown Greensboro, not far from my trackside apartment, that still loaded or received 40’ boxcars, and was switched by a local switch engine in the morning. IIRC, the cars were taken to/brought from Pomona, where they may (not entirely sure) have been added to the Western Carloading pickup.
Some of the details above may be off, but you get the idea - LCL was fading away, but in 1971 was not entirely dead. There may have been other examples of vestigial LCL service on the Southern at that time, but I wasn’t aware of it.