Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

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I'm spending Thanksgiving at my away from home terminal. Just had dinner with the rest of the crew, but now back at the hotel with not much to do. So what better than NWP trivia? Our favorite little railroad has an interesting history, much of it unknown to most. Just thought I'd see how many people can answer the following correctly.

1. Where are NWP trains currently dispatched from?

A. American Canyon/Napa Junction, CA

B. Schellville, CA

C. Petaluma, CA

D. St. Albans, VT

E. None of the above

2. True or False: An Amtrak P42DC has operated on NWP trackage.

3. In the days of SP ownership, a manifest operating out of Roseville would run to Eureka, making set outs and pickups for local switchers along the way. What was the official SP/NWP designation for this train?






I'll be back...

...with teh answers after you've all spoken.

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1: D

2: yes one in 1999

3: B

No idea (along with 30+ other folks who looked at this).

The answers are???


2.false? Where are the photos/video if it were true? Seems like that would've been a big deal...


Zachary M. Toler

1. B
2. True
3. C

The P42DC was part of a US Postal service Histroy train that traveled the country some 10 yrs ago or so. There is a photo record of it in trains Magazine. Good work Jordanism.

There was an ArtTrain at some point, I have NO memory what pulled it in. Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

To Steve, I Richard Custer was working as a brakeman on a job the Petaluma - shellville turn out of Petaluma, do not remember the date or year but I do remember waiting at Shellville for the ArTrain. We add our caboose to the rearend of the ArTrain and our SW1500 to the headend power and pulled the ArTrain to Petaluma.

How long ago was the art train?

Long enough ago that I can't remember.... so over 30 minutes. Seriously I had some pictures (film based) somewhere, not sure if I still have them. But thanks for the info RAC.

OK, so does anyone remember the number of the P42DC, so I can at least look up some photos of it somewhere else? Or where I can get a copy of that Trains Magazine issue?

Zachary M. Toler

Answer Key:

1. D

All movement on NWP rails, whether it be a train or MOW, is authorized in the form of track warrants issued by the New England Central Railroad dispatcher in St. Albans, VT.

2. True

As stated by others, The USPS Celebrate the Century Express had a stop in Santa Rosa, though I don't know the exact date. AMTK 100 did the honors.

3. C



Y=Yard Job....

....wait, what?

I've noticed that a lot of older SP manifests actually had "Y" designations. Can someone with more SP knowledge please elaborate?

Pictures of the Celebrate the Century Express...


The "Y" designation did indeed mark this as a yard job.  I did some poking around on the internet and could not find a ready explanation as to why this drew a "Y" instead of an "M".  My guess, and this is only a guess, is that it had something to do with union running this train as a "Y" job, the railroad might have been able to require the crews to do switching along the way, which was a part of this train's job.  Had the job been run as a manifest, the crews might have been able to claim two paychecks for each run, one for the Manifest part of the trip, then a separate time card for Yard duties for the time spent switching at Scotia, Alderpoint, and other industries along the line.  As I said, only a guess, and if anyone has any more specific information please pass it along...I will also update should I find anything more definitive.


Jeff Moore

Elko, NV

 Jeff Moore, far as I'm concerned you pretty much hit the nail on the head, and you explained it very well.  As I remember some of my jobs....where I drew cash for doing both Manifest and Yard did seem like stealing from the bankrolls of the railroad.  Those old "Union Agreements", led to a lot of financial problems over the long term for the railroads.


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