The Big White Rectangle

nw-mailing-list at nw-mailing-list at
Fri Sep 15 21:28:45 EDT 2006

For about the first 20 years of the last century (and a bit before that)
N&W freight cars had a large white rectangle painted on them. The cars
delivered in 1893 didn't have the rectangle but the steel frame HD hopper
of 1896 did. The secondhand box cars N&W bought in 1895 may or may not have
had it. The last car to have it was the prototype GS battleship gon built
in September 1920, as the production GS gons did not have it.

Why did N&W put that rectangle on every car it would fit on (box, stock,
hopper, and gon, but not flats)?

David Thompson

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