A Caboose Deadline

Okay, I said last week that the caboose “series” had ended. But this week I came across this photograph taken by friend Ron Findley of a caboose deadline that I thought was interesting.

The location is McComb, Mississippi and the date is February 18, 1988. Ron and I made a trip to Hammond, Louisiana that day, then followed Hwy. 51 north until we reached McComb. This deadline of Illinois Central Gulf cabooses was sitting in one of the yard tracks just south of the depot and locomotive servicing area. I think you’ll find at least one of every model of steel cabooses that the I.C./ I.C.G. ever ran in this lineup! It was the early days of the demise of these cars and railroads were taking them out of service in droves. Some found a second life as a storage building or a cabin, some in museums . . . most ended up in scrap yards.

It was the end of an era. Folks under the age of 30 years likely have never seen one of these bringing up the rear of a train.

Caboose Deadline, McComb, Miss.

As a side note, just eleven days after this photograph was taken, the parent company of the Illinois Central Gulf spun off their railroad assets, and the railroad reverted back to its original name of Illinois Central.

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