Four Days of Steam in Dixie - A Modern Steam Odyssey DVD
Steamboy (Revere MA US) on 2020-08-20 20:58:31.
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In this 1992 program, it starts with Jim Boyd hosting from the control room as he discusses on what's coming in this program as well as talking about how steam railroading in the early 90s & 80s are challenging. Throughout the program, the late railfan magazine editor himself is wearing a 3751 hat. With the opening titles finished, Jim talks about the night photo session on Friday may 1, 1992 with still images of 610 & an unactive 630 at the Tennessee valley railroad museum in Chattanooga. Plus there is also still images of a Nashville Chattanooga & St. Louis diesel switcher with a little red caboose.
On Saturday May 2, 1992, 610 is being prepared for the day long operations at the east Chattanooga shops. There are 25 photographers who are visiting this unique event. Afterwards, there are vintage films of the U.S. Army consolidations on a tripleheader while going backwards in the early 60s by Mike eagleson. They are numbers 606, 611, & 612. Consolidation 611 is referenced to the Norfolk & western J class 4-8-4 which we will see later. Shortly thereafter, the tripleheader performs a runby at various locations in Virginia. Meanwhile, 607 is running light while we are back in the modern era as the preparations are underway. All to soon, the freight special with 610 leaves the east Chattanooga shops which includes a caboose ride. The first runby of the 1992 special was at a mile marker between the shops & The missionary ridge tunnel. Afterwards, we're back onboard the caboose as 610 goes over the bridge while crossing over the CSX mainline. East of the bridge, 610 makes another runby as it passes by a siding with some rolling stock, followed by a repeat of the same location but it's from a different angle. Moments later, 610 negotiates a bend while passing by the junction as it activates the diesel bell for the next runby of the day, followed by a runby at the chickamauga creek trestle. Note the black smoke billowing out of the funnel. Afterwards, another runby is shown at the same location. In no time at all, 610 arrives at the museum's grand junction depot where there are tracks to interchange with NS. With the little freight train stopped, the 610 goes backwards, comes to a stop next to the station, a close up look at 4-4-0 number 349 from the Georgia central which has since been sold to a new home years later, & we are back onboard the caboose. The next runby of the Saturday only special is at the missionary ridge tunnel built in 1858. With everyone out of the caboose, 610 makes a back up move while there is commentary from one of the photographers as the 1952 built consolidation heads for the tunnel. With everyone silent, 610 rolls out of the tunnel without its front headlamp activated. As 610 is finished for the day, the Alco MRS-1 number 8677 arrives with the freight to be stored in a siding. Amazingly enough, the 8677 was built in 1942, 10 heads before 610 was built. Meanwhile, the consolidation handled the afternoon passenger trips with a whistle show as it heads for the tunnel. With the freight cars dropped off, the 8677 handles 2 cabooses as it leaves the tunnel. Then we get a brief ride on one of the little red cabooses behind the early diesel. At the east Chattanooga shops, the diesel had took a spin on the turntable as it runs light while participants wait for the clear signal to walk the tracks. Meanwhile, 610 is on another trip of the Saturday afternoon excursions as it crosses over the chickamauga creek trestle, followed by a whistle show as it heads for the missionary ridge tunnel. On another trip, 610 crosses the chickamauga creek trestle once again as we bid farewell to the Tennessee valley railroad museum. After the 2010 season came to a close, the postwar built locomotive was retired and eventually replaced by a restored 630.
Back in the control room, Jim talks about the conclusion of the Saturday special as well as the introduction to 290 plus some details on the parts of the 1926 lima Ohio built Pacific. Outside, the locomotive is being serviced for the day, followed by a map of the route. Sadly the 290 operates from 1989-1992 & it's standing silent at the southeastern railway museum in Duluth Georgia. Next we get to see some 8mm films in 1952 & 1953 by Donald van court as we see mountain class 4-8-2 number 186 on the western railway of Alabama pulling train 32 in January of 1953, followed by some coal loading onto the tender. Moments later, 4-6-0 number 261 (A reference to the Milwaukee road 4-8-4) is on train 31 during April 11, 1953. Followed by a departure in Montgomery as well as a stop in cheehaw the next day. Afterwards, a pair of F units are on the West point route. This scene was in Montgomery Alabama on October 11 1952. On the crescent limited, a pair of Geeps which one of them are numbered 573 (a reference to a Maine central GP7 at the Conway scenic railroad in New Hampshire) in millstead followed by the F units leading train 35 on November 22, 1953 (exactly 10 years before John F. Kennedy was assassinated). A geep is on a freight in millstead on November 17, 1952. F unit 553 & a geep teamed up on train 35 during January 31 1953 in cheehaw. On April 11, 1953, Geep number 571 handles the local freight train. On October 25, 1952, 523 is on mixed train 41 out of Montgomery. Meanwhile at the Georgia railroad, a GP7 handles the Washington mixed train on Halloween 1953. On the same day, we're at crawfordsville as train 1 is heading from Augusta to Atlanta with F units leading. Back to the modern era, 290 makes a pair of runbys at the interchange for seaboard & Georgia central known as belt junction. Listen to the deep toned steamboat whistle as 290 carries 4 coaches. Moments later, the 4-6-2 backs up as it prepares for a second runby at the same location while people are talking offscreen. Afterwards, the locomotive performs the second runby of the day. East of the Emory university station, 290 is on the seaboard line as it heads under the overpass. Near the tracks, 290 rolls through some flowers & trees before the new Georgia railroad send out its FP7 to tow the train backwards while heading for the wye at belt junction. The next 3 runbys were made at the South peach tree creek trestle in Emory. The second runby has a black smoke show where 290 tries to pick up speed. At the 3rd runby, there are clouds coming in while 290 makes another smoke show. Several moments later, the locomotive must wait for some CSX freight trains to pass & sure enough, the 290 leaves the siding at belt junction while heading for the 5 track line in downtown Atlanta to Howell junction for the final runbys of the Sunday only special. This scene with the big city in the background is shown on the overpass, then we get to hear 290's steamboat whistle as it heads back for the new Georgia shops. The 290 was one of the mainline steam engines that should've got more attention from railfans. At least the locomotive appeared in the universal movie: fried green tomatoes with Kathy Bates. John craft who organized the specials screams out the word yes, and we are back in the control room.
With only 20 minutes left in this program, Jim talks about 4501 heading south from Knoxville to Chattanooga on Monday may 4, 1992. The runs with the 1911 Mikado was slow due to track work. Initially, Jim mentioned 4501 with a location that was named after his last name. Listen to the iconic bell & whistle on the mikado which is now operating at the Tennessee valley railroad museum, as 4501 negotiates the bend at Louden Tennessee, as well as a young family talking offscreen. 4501 is carrying a Norfolk & western water car, 3 hoppers, & a southern bay window caboose. Moments later, 4501 whistles through Philadelphia as it picks up the pace, followed by a meet with a blue pick up truck in Athens, whistling by a farm south of the previous location, and comes to a stop in riceville, before we rejoined Jim at the control room.
Here he talks about 611 on Tuesday may 5, 1992 where the weather wasn't co-operating. The coverage begins at glade spring Virginia as the 1950 built 4-8-4 is being turned on the wye While sandwiched between the diesel & The gondola with coal. Another load of coal is filled up, & The J gets underway again while turning on the wye. The whistle is activated as 611 pulls out of glade spring on its way to the J's birthplace: roanoke. Rural retreat Virginia is the location where O. Winston link captured the sounds of N&W steam on Christmas eve 1957. The camera rolls as 611 whistles for the crossing while automobiles try to stay safe. Moments later, the J is whistling east of max meadows, followed by shawsville, Elliston, & some pacing While the whistle keeps blowing. With only 10 minutes left, 611 is negotiating the double track bend at Glenvar, then it enters Salem. High hood unit 1589 provides extra power.
Back at the control room, Jim talks about the tweetsie railroad in North Carolina. This was photographed 2 months after the 610, 290, 4501, & 611 trips. The main reason why Jim came to the tweetsie railroad, is for 75th birthday of 4-6-0 number 12. The coverage begins with the narrow gauge 10 wheeler as it whistles over the wooden curved trestle bridge. Note the eye catching colors on the coaches. Afterwards, a brief ride from onboard the coaches is shown. Back on the ground, the number 12 passes by some horse saddles, then the camera cuts back to the onboard footage. Back on the ground, the highway is on the east side of the screen, as the 10 wheeler passes by the shops. Amazingly, the little railroad never have any derailments nor mechanical issues with their locomotives, especially never injuring a crew member and/or a passenger. Down by the station, the 10 wheeler leaves the park with another trip around the loop, then it passes by the opry and heads for the crossing. Afterwards, the number 12 crosses over the wooden straight line bridge while whistling through the trees, then the camera cuts to the onboard scene, followed by an S curve, as well as whistling over the wooden trestle. With the help ringing, the number 12 passes by the shops as it arrives back at the depot. With the people heading home, the number 12 gets parked for the night at the yard. The trains in tweetsie operates every 30 minutes around the park. It's located near the North Carolina Virginia state line.
One final epilogue shows the ceremony for the 10 wheeler as the credits roll
Additional remarks by Steamboy:
Narration: Just enough.
Would kids enjoy this? Yes.
Image quality: Excellent!
DVD Value: Good Value
Recommend to others? A "Must Have"!
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