[N&W] Re: Standard Clocks

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Thu May 6 22:24:46 EDT 2004

I take great pride in the railroad watches I've inherited, and I shudder
when I
see ads for quartz "railroad" pocket watches with covered lenses.

Maurice Anderson

Re Ed King's and Harry Bundy's comments on "Standard Clocks":  Right on
guys!  In fact, I well remember the big standard clock at Southern's yard
office in Appalachia, and the ritual of listening to the Naval Observatory
signals.  When high noon was signalled, as Harry noted, the operator would
push a button that reset the clock to 12 Noon.  An entry was then made in a
journal (railroad's kept written records then of darn near everything!)
noting the clock's accuracy (4 seconds slow, or 6 seconds fast....whatever).
Ed noted the critical nature of time for train order/timetable operation
then.  If you were a train running against the time of an opposing train,
you better darn sure hope both you and the opposing train's crew had the
same time.  Otherwise, a cornfield meet might be the outcome.
Ron Flanary

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