Maintenance of Way Equipment Roster
The Equipment Needed to Maintain the South Shore and Mineral Range
The tables on this page list the maintenance of way equipment that the Duluth, South Shore, and Atlantic Railway (DSS&A) was using in the Autumn of 1922. I have also included a similar roster for the Mineral Range Railroad (MRRR) for the Autumn of 1922. The Hancock and Calumet Railroad (H&CRR) is not detailed since it owned no equipment in 1922. The DSS&A maintenance equipment was assigned to the Bridge and Building Department.
So far I have found a limited amount of information about this equipment and much of these data are conflicting. I have left three question marks (???) in places where I am missing information or I am confused. Please contact me if you can help clarify these data. I have done my best to sort out the available data and present an accurate picture of this vital equipment.
Maintenance of Way Roster, Autumn 1922
The feet and inches in the table refer to the length of the car. You will note that some of the car numbers overlap. This is probably because car numbers changed between the dates of the lists I had available to me. Business cars nos. 302 and 555 are also included on some lists as maintenance of way equipment. However, I have listed them on the Passenger Car Roster.
Sources: ICC 1916b. "The DSS&A Ry.--Valuation at June 30, 1917, Michigan Rate Care--April 21, 1922" typed list in the red Freight binder of the Perron Collection. The Official Railway Equipment Register (December 1923, 392-393). "Valuation of the Duluth, South Shore & Atlantic Railway as of date June 30th 1911," State Archives of Michigan, Record Group: Records of Attorney General, Duluth South Shore & Atlantic R. R. vs. State of Michigan, accession no. 53-7, lot no. 3, box no. outsize.
In addition to the equipment listed in the above table, the DSS&A also owned aprons, stakes, and side planks to equip 110 flat cars, two horses, two wagons, two harnesses, a sleigh, 63 locomotive snow plows (75 in 1911), five pilot flangers, 63 snow covers, a cinder unloader, and a locomotive crane.
The Official Railway Equipment Register (December 1923, 392-393) indicates under miscellaneous equipment the following:
The Interstate Commerce Commission report (ICC 1916b) also lists the following information for 1916:
Lastly, the 1911 valuation of the DSS&A has a detailed list of tools found in the wrecking train tool car. Among the items listed are jacks, wheels, wedges, coupler parts, blocks and pulleys, wire cable, chains, spikes, wrenches, bolts, bars, mawls, hooks, shovels, sledges, hammers, lanterns, boots, and blankets.
MRRR Maintenance of Way Roster, Autumn 1922
Sources: ICC 1916c.
The MRRR must also have had locomotive snow plows, but I can find no record of how many they had or of any other miscellaneous equipment.
For me the most interesting maintenance equipment is that relating to the removal of snow. It is clear that we are dealing with a north country railroad from the list of snow related equipement. The DSS&A had only one rotary plow, but it had a wide variety of other snow removing equipment including regular snow plow with blades and snow wideners, as well as a large number of snow plows that could be attached to the front of locomotives. Preparations for Winter operations must have involved a lot of work fitting the locomotives with their plows. However, the preparation was probably easy in comparison to the day-to-day tasks associated with actually clearing the tracks during the Winter months. Removing the snow equipment, cleaning and repairing it, and storing it away must have been regarding as a sure sign that Spring had arrived.
Curiously, I did not see any hand cars mentioned. I assume that the DSS&A and MRRR must have used them. They must have been considered so common that they were not enumerated.
This page, and all contents, are Copyright © 1997 by John P. DuLong, Berkley, MI. Created 6 May 1996. Last modified 5 February 1998.