December 19, 2017

Cargo Types on the Aquia Line

Adams Express Office in Chattanooga

A couple years ago I posted a summary of a typical day on the USMRR at this link A Day of Operation on the USMRR Aquia Line - 2 March 1863    Recently, I went through a few additional weeks of  conductors reports not shown on that link and made this list of car contents. They are not in any order, but it shows the variety of loads carried on the USMRR Aquia Line.

1. Passengers
2. Soldiers (these seem to be associated with a major move as there were about 2 dozen car loads when they moved)
3. Forage
4. Q.M. stores
5. Coms. stores
6. Convalescents (rode in box cars)
7. Lumber
8. Mail (usually one car in a train when listed)
9. RR Supplies
10. Ordnance
11. Hospital stores
12. Construction materials
13. Express
14. Baggage (on the troop trains)
15. Coal (yes one car on Aquia Line)
16. General Smith and Party
There was also some message traffic on special trains for Haupt, General Ingalls and General Burnside.

I really need to build some forage bales, as that was the predominant cargo on the railroad. '

 I am also planning an Adams Express car to run with the mail and passenger car. The photos show two possible styles, though not on the Aquia Line.

We do have some evidence that Adams Express operated on the Aquia line with offices at Falmouth and Aquia landing. They advertised in NY papers to families to send packages as this ad below shows.

1 comment:

  1. Ah yes, forage. Bernie, you and I both know this was a significant supply item to be moved to support an Army. That was a major driver in the US Army move to mechanization post-WWI. I have seen some figures noting a reduction of about thirty percent in shipping required to move and support a standard infantry division when machinery replaced horses. Count this as another big reason for using the railroad!

    Bill Decker