Annies daily freights

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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MIGN-Todd » Thu Jul 16, 2009 10:31 pm

alot more info than I initially thought. Thanks guys
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby penn central » Thu Jul 23, 2009 9:50 am

Don Simon wrote:That would be cool to hook up with you in Durand sometime, pc. I'll keep an eye open for opportunities.
Thanks Don Yea have to meet you sometime that would be nice.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Standard Railfan » Wed Mar 28, 2012 8:55 pm

From the better late than never department.

I grew up in Mt. Pleasant. I spent quite a few hours at the AA depot talking with Roger Stevens the agent in the early 1970s. I recall that an Ann Arbor locomotive was a rare sight on any train at that time. The power was almost always DT&I.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby AARR » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:35 pm

Standard Railfan wrote:From the better late than never department.

I grew up in Mt. Pleasant. I spent quite a few hours at the AA depot talking with Roger Stevens the agent in the early 1970s. I recall that an Ann Arbor locomotive was a rare sight on any train at that time. The power was almost always DT&I.

In the early 1970's DT&I confiscated AA's 10 GP35's and leased them 10ish DT&I units (GP7's and 38's). Crews liked the 38's but not the 7's although the 7's were mechanically sound.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MIGN-Todd » Thu Mar 29, 2012 4:23 pm

Hmm, kinda flattered this post was returned to after almost three years....sweet
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Standard Railfan » Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:19 pm

MIGN-Todd wrote:Hmm, kinda flattered this post was returned to after almost three years....sweet


I just found the website a few months ago. I had some time last night to dig through the old posts. There is a lot of great stuff here. I am learning things I have wondered about for years and other comments are bringing back a lot of memories.

Thanks everyone.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MIGN-Todd » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:13 pm

Dude, you can't believe what actually turns up here. Amazing amounts of info
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MIGN-Todd » Sun Apr 01, 2012 11:47 am

I could not imagine what it would have been like sitting there in downtown Beulah watching that many trains under the Ann Arbor flag roll past in any given day! Incredible! Must have been back in the days with all the Alco FA's. They didn't have enough GP-35's to handle all of that traffic. When you stated, "One massive train" did all the online switching etc.- what a waste! So much for timely deliverys. I've seen pics of four and five GP-35's up front- has anyone ever heard of them throwing a couple on the tail as helpers? Seems like the grades east of Boat Landing would have broken a coupler or two..... The sound must have been awesome with all those EMDs pullin'
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby AARR » Sun Apr 01, 2012 12:51 pm

MIGN-Todd wrote:I could not imagine what it would have been like sitting there in downtown Beulah watching that many trains under the Ann Arbor flag roll past in any given day! Incredible! Must have been back in the days with all the Alco FA's. They didn't have enough GP-35's to handle all of that traffic. When you stated, "One massive train" did all the online switching etc.- what a waste! So much for timely deliverys. I've seen pics of four and five GP-35's up front- has anyone ever heard of them throwing a couple on the tail as helpers? Seems like the grades east of Boat Landing would have broken a coupler or two..... The sound must have been awesome with all those EMDs pullin'

A new general manager in the late 1950's changed AA's operating pattern from three trains in each direction that hanlded all the work inbetween (one was fast freight and only handled hot cars, the other two split local and ferry traffic switching across the system) to one giant through train and three locals (TOL-OWO, OWO-CAD, ELB-CAD) plus the yard jobs.

DT&I kept up the same schedule but traffic declined until there was only one boat making two round trips per day by the mid 1970's.

There were numerous changes to operating patterns from around 1976 until ferry service ended in 1982. Too many for me to list. But depending on track conditions (which was slow most of the time it sometimes took two crews to get from Elberta to Toledo), online customers, etc. the operation would change to best try and service the customers.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MIGN-Todd » Sun Apr 01, 2012 1:10 pm

As my name implies, I loved the MIGN mainly because that's what I had in terms of ride alongs and common viewing BUT, as far as interesting history and stories- Annie takes the cake. Still only one book out there that I have to get- the big new expensive one on the AA. Haven't found it anywhere up here in TC yet. Love to learn about it
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Standard Railfan » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:22 pm

I recall in the mid 1970s AA ran a local from Owosso as far as Clare a couple time per week, usually turning at MP. The business in Cadillac was handled by the Elberta based local and would pull everything back north for inclusion in the next road train for Owosso. I can't recall for sure, but I recall the agent in MP telling me that the Owosso local didn't run past Clare as a normal course of business. That lasted until the end of boat service as far as I know.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Mark F » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:26 am

Bumping an old topic. Here's a throwback photo from the Friends of the Betsie Valley Trail:
https://www.facebook.com/betsievalleytr ... =3&theater
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Henry F. Burger » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:38 pm

When a FT or TF was numbered higher than 3 it was a local job for the day, example work extras, snow plows & etc,
There also was a Owosso to Mt. Pleasant job which ran also every Monday to Friday using normally a RS1
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby wagnew0923 » Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:25 am

When did the ferry service stop and Ann Arbor sell everything north of its current end of line.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby AARR » Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:20 am

Ferry service ended April 1982

AA service ended beyond Ann Arbor almost immediately.

MIGN and TSB split north of Ann Arbor around October 1982 and TSB was awarded full operating rights around October 1984.

I don’t have my notes so I’m going from memory which isn’t always so good so my dates might be off a little.

wagnew0923 wrote:When did the ferry service stop and Ann Arbor sell everything north of its current end of line.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby wagnew0923 » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:20 pm

Was ferry traffic really on the decline at that time or was it still healthy?
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby AARR » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:46 pm

Averaging 20-40 cars per day. However, it was losing money and there was a dispute about the state subsidy so despite two ferries per day AA shut it down.
wagnew0923 wrote:Was ferry traffic really on the decline at that time or was it still healthy?
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Fri Apr 13, 2018 6:46 am

I was just reading an old issue of Railroad magazine, I think 1973 or 1974, and it mentioned the AA petitioning to abandon the ferry operation and trackage west of Thompsonville. I was surprised they were trying to unload it that far back.
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby AARR » Fri Apr 13, 2018 9:07 am

This was during DT&I’s ownership of AA. DT&I was forced to operate AA (they didn’t want it) and there is speculation, but not hard evidence, that they didn’t manage it to be profitable or sustainable. Instead they looked for ways to make DT&I better while taking what value they could from AA and deferring maintenance.
Ben Higdon wrote:I was just reading an old issue of Railroad magazine, I think 1973 or 1974, and it mentioned the AA petitioning to abandon the ferry operation and trackage west of Thompsonville. I was surprised they were trying to unload it that far back.
PatC created a monster, 'cause nobody wants to see Don Simon no more they want AARR I'm chopped liver, well if you want AARR this is what I'll give ya, bad humor mixed with irrelevant info that'll make you roll your eyes quicker than a ~Z~ banhammer...
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Re: Annies daily freights

Unread postby MSchwiebert » Sun Apr 15, 2018 6:40 pm

I'm sure the demise of the 40' freight car was another factor on the demise of the car ferries. From what I could see, 30 freight cars was the capacity of the boat that became the Viking when it was built. (I'm assuming that it kept that capacity when it was rebuilt into the Viking). While I don't have the exact figures, the concept is the same. Say the total cost for The Viking to make a trip across the lake was $6,000. Spread that $6,000 across 30 cars and its $200 per car. However, lets say the capacity of 60' cars is 20. You still have that $6,000 cost - but now it's $300 per car. How many customers would be willing to take on a 50% increase so the Annie could keep their margin the same? Not many I'd wager. Even if they could pass on half of the additional cost, would the remaining cost absorbed by the railroad make the operation unprofitable? I'd also believe that in the de-regulated era, the railroads on the other end of the lake were also more interested in getting the longest haul (IE to Chicago) than to hand off cars at some out of the way dock on lake Michigan, bringing even fewer cars to the operation.
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