JeffPo's Southern Railway Lantern Page #3
Last update: 09/20/17
This is an Armspear lantern that was used on the Southern Railway. It's an older "1925" Armspear model, with 1925 embossed on the top of the lid. The brass burner also has 1925 embossed in it.
The brim of the lid is embossed with S. RY., which of course stands for Southern Railway.
The amber globe (officially yellow) is etched with SOUTHERN RY. It also has 1925 cast into the glass. The amber/orange globe means it could have been used to mark camp cars (for workers staying overnight), or for notifying the train engineer that there were Form 19 orders to pick up. Form 19 orders are "hooped" (affixed to a stick with a hoop on it that the engineer could put his arm through to grab it) up to the engineer and conductor once the train is underway. People tending the railroad track switches also used amber globed lanterns for signaling.
Southern Railway engine at the NC Transportation Museum in Spencer, NC.
The Southern Railway Company was chartered by the Virginia Legislature as a new company in February 1894. The Southern Railway is the product of nearly 150 predecessor lines that were combined, reorganized, and recombined since the 1830s. By 1916, the railroad had become an 8000 mile, 13 state system. The Southern Railway, and its predecessors were responsible for many firsts in the industry. One predecessor, the South Carolina Canal & Rail Road Co, was the first to carry passengers, U.S. troops and mail on regularly-scheduled steam-powered trains. It was also the first to operate at night. In 1953, Southern Railway became the first major railroad in the United States to convert totally to diesel-powered locomotives. On the cutting edge of change, the company's catch phrase was "The Railway System that Gives a Green Light to Innovations". The Southern Railway came to an end by name when it merged with the Norfolk & Western to form the Norfolk & Southern in 1982. But you can still find Southern boxcars on the track. "Southern Serves the South".
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