Texas Special Footage

Discussion in 'General' started by frisco4301, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. frisco4301

    frisco4301 Member

    This may already be posted but found some rare 8mm footage of the Texas Special post SLSF participation on Youtube. Search "MKT Texas Special". Footage at Waxahachie July, 1964 with shot on board, Waco, and northbound at Lancaster. Jeff Cooney, Lindsay, TX
  2. TAG1014 (Tom Galbraith RIP 7/15/2020)

    TAG1014 (Tom Galbraith RIP 7/15/2020) Passed Away July 15, 2020 Frisco.org Supporter

    As I watched these videos (Of the Texas Special and another of the Katy Flyer) and thought: Poor ol' Katy was on the downhill slide, but even then, there was no better way to go if you were going where there were tracks. Great Americana--People gathering at the station; kids anticipating the train arrival; folks meeting friends and family; railroad men talking and checking their watches...


    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2011
  3. gstout

    gstout Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Not only was the last trip of MKT 1-2 south of Dallas (the train continued in operation as a Kaycee-Dallas job for another year or so), it was also the last day of dining car service on the Katy. Chances are today a Kansas City-DFW run would be at least moderately successful.

  4. Joseph Toth

    Joseph Toth Member

    After my parents moved from Dallas to Tampa, Florida, in 1959 I missed the Frisco, Katy and Cotton Belt 24/7! I got to spend the summer of 1960 with my grandparents who still lived in Farmers Branch, north of Dallas. I would ride my cousin´s bike over to the Frisco´s Ft. Worth-Sherman main and watch F units and FAs roll their Frisco Fast Freight under a big clear sunny Texas sky. The bad news was the two way Greyhound bus trip!

    I spent a week with my aunt and uncle in Houston and for my big Birthday Fourteen I got to return to Big D on the Ft. Worth & Denver´s Sam Houston Zephyr. I remember the scenes at the depots where it stopped to board and detrain passengers so well.

    How times have changed. No airport on this planet can equal the excitement and tranquillity of Down at the Depot at Train Time!


    Joe Toth
  5. gstout

    gstout Member Frisco.org Supporter

    That particular video has been around for quite a while, and I downloaded it several years ago. It is just such a shame that the film quality is so poor--no doubt the 8mm film has faded/color shifted over the years. That said, I still bring it up and watch it ever now and then just for nostalgia's sake, along with the (very) short video of the 1962 METEOR at Old Orchard.


    SAFN SAAP Member

    How sad it was to see the old varnish disappear from the rails. I wonder what kind of affect a different marketing structure would have had on the railroads. Maybe they wouldn't of lost the passenger service or ripped up so much track. Regardless, it was nice to watch that video and see some of history, but the derelict state of the equipment said it all concerning the railroads in the 1960's.
  7. gstout

    gstout Member Frisco.org Supporter

    The problem the railroads had vis-a-vis their passenger operations was not one of marketing, it was one of economics, specifically the labor cost involved with operating the train plus the cost of replacing or upgrading old equipment. Yes, the railroads overstated their "fully absorbed" costs as a means of accelerating train-off petitions, but the train were losing money "above the rails" anyway. Consider that it took five or six people to operate a jet airplane between Chicago and Seattle and thirty-some odd to run the OLYMPIAN. In point of fact, nobody today really makes money transporting people. Certainly not the commuter rail authority here in Chicago and not even the airlines, which, if they had to pay their own way for ground facilities, air traffic control, etc., simply could not exist.

  8. Joseph Toth

    Joseph Toth Member

    Back in the early 60s the Railway Progress Institute launched a program they called The Magna Carta of Transportation. It addressed the issue of the unfair treatment the railroads were receiving from the government in relation to the airlines, motor transport carriers as well as the barge traffic on the waterways. Indirectly it also included the private automobile as well since the construction of the Interstate highway system made it easier to take the family on vacation on rubber wheels instead of the flanged wheel.

    Amtrak has had to fight for its existance since it was created and it is a pity that there isn´t a sound transportation policy to insure that high speed rail lines get constructed without polititians blocking the way from either party. Japan lead the way with high speed rail in the 60s while Washington DC is still trying to reinvent the stage coach and bring it into the 21st Century.

    Despite the problems that faced the railroads when they entered the 1960s and even with the lack of proper maintenence The Texas Special was still a beautiful lady. She might have lacked the fancy looks that the Santa Fe´s Texas Chief offered the public but her down home hospitality and dinners in the diner were still part of a proud and famous history next to none.

    Train travel hasn´t been the same since.

    Joe Toth
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 26, 2012

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