Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Yosemite and Private Railroad Cars

Tacked onto the tail of the Capitol Flyer is the Argonaut en route to Milton. The leaded glass windows are decals applied to clear styrene windows.
Part of an 1870s brochure advertising
the Yosemite "package."
When someone wanted to travel to the Yosemite Valley in the 1800s, the average person would leave San Francisco at 4:00 p.m. on the Stockton steamer. By 7:00 a.m. the next morning, he was on the S&C train to Milton where he board a stage. He changed stages at Chinese Camp, stayed overnight at Garote and then transferred to a pack train and was in the Valley by 2:00 p.m. the next day. Only a two-day trip! If you had a lot more money, you had your private switch to the S&C train, left it at Milton and then took the stage/pack train. Old-timers said there was always a private car or two at Milton awaiting the return of their owners.
   To simulate this on my model Stockton & Copperopolis, a few private cars were needed. Well, at least one. A couple of weeks ago, a visiting operator left me with a Model Die Casting Palace observation car kit. Since I had no other big projects in mind, I put the kit together, made up some lettering and here is the result, ready to be pulled to Milton so its owner can sojourn in the fabulous Yosemite Valley.
The Argonaut blocks F Street while its owner gets a newspaper from the depot. The rear platform awning is paper glued to the car end. 


  1. Very nice Don! I love the pin stripping on the trucks as well. Decals also I presume?

  2. Don,
    Great but as your friends on the Colorado Midland have found the Pullman color was umber (also called chocolate brown) by the reporter. In 1901 after George Pullman died did the new executives go to the pullman green. Your regular color is the correct first class and parlor car colors.