"The Crummy"

March 21, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

The Caboose, also know as the crummy, and other, sometimes derogatory names, was the conductor's office.  The conductor, was the manager of the train, keeping the paperwork on the trains schedule, the cars that made up the train, and other pertinent information.  The caboose came into regular use by the railroads during the 1830's, and the form eventually evolved to the steel car with windows and a cupola or bay window. The term caboose derives from the Dutch word kabhuis which referred to a cooking shack on the deck of a sailing ship.  Today, the caboose is retired in favor of an end of train signal, eliminating the conductor and brakemen.

The caboose was also used to watch the train for hot bearings, shifting loads and other problems.  The caboose was also a house and kitchen for the crew on long hauls and protected the crew from inclement weather.  Many stories and songs were written about the caboose and the crew that rode the rails in them.

Please enjoy the photos I took while riding the cupola of the caboose on the Nevada Southern Railroad on the trip from Boulder City to Railroad Pass near Las Vegas.

Find a local excursion railroad that has a caboose or two in their equipment roster; and, maybe like the Nevada Southern, you too can ride the caboose.


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