From its start, the NO&C built many of their steam RR passenger and freight cars, and their streetcars, at the company's car maintenance and car building facility in Carrollton. This substantial edifice sat on First St. (now St. Charles Ave.) between Dublin and Madison (now Dante) on the river side of First. This location is two squares (blocks) above Canal Ave. (now South Carrollton Ave.) and is now partially covered by the levee and the banks of the Mississippi River, due to the river's encroachment (by meandering) in the late 1880s. First and Dante is the place where the NO&C built a large hotel with extravagant, extensive gardens — on the lake side of First. These improvements became a popular “resort” which drew thousands of New Orleanians after the road's steam RR opened in September of 1835. (The NO&C's two streetcar lines had commended service eight months earlier.)
|THE NO&C STREETCARS|
|1-10 (Poss. 15)||10 to 15 BLT by NO&C||BLT 1834-1835||DD PM 3 CPT|
|BLT at Carrollton Station following an English design (see Pontchartrain RR, p. e). The last roster on which these cars were listed was dated June 1, 1867, and the cars were described as “doubles”. These cars were solidly built, at Charles Zimpel's direction, and only one is known to have met with destruction, when the Carrollton Station burned (DP 10/7/1838, G p. 23). Stephenson BT cars replaced these “skyscrapers” 1867-1868 — 34 years of service. On June 1, 1867 the NO&C had six of these DD cars for sale (G p. 46).|
|Nos. unk.||At least 17 BLT by NO&C||BLT 1849-1850 |
|When the Napoleon and Louisiana lines opened in 1850, more cars were needed, even though the rerouted Magazine-La Course line had been abandoned in 1841. Unfortunately, no images of these cars have been discovered. However, the cover of a patent description, a Dr. Lamm-NO&C “Chloride of Calcium engine”, attached to a PM DR streetcar (G p. 51) may give an indication. An old NO&C “single” may well have been used to test this motive power. June 1, 1867, the NO&C had two of the “singles” up for sale (G p. 46). NO&C RB 12 of these for the Orleans RR Co. to open in 1868 (not to be confused with the Orleans Street RR Co. of 1836; no connection between the two corporations).|
|1-60||60 cars||BLT 1867-1868||BT BR|
|BLT by Stephenson, replacing all other streetcars on the system (P — S p. 107, car 35). They ran until replaced by the St. Louis Car Co. 1892-93 ST electrics — 25 years of service. Turntables had to be installed at the termini of all NO&C streetcar lines. The BT cars easily reversed without requiring a loop track or under-carriage allowing the car body to rotate 180°.|
|61-62||2 cars||BLT 1890 |
|Similar to the Stephensons.|
|63-65||3 cars||BLT 1891||BT DR|
|BLT by Stephenson, the last mulecars BLT new for the NO&C. Monitor roof for mulecar, the last stand for “modernized” animal traction car. P, interior S p. 106, exterior S p. 107.|
Fundamental improvements of the NO&C began before the Civil War ended. The Louisiana line began terminating at Baronne & Canal, with 30 min. headways, starting Monday, May 16, 1864 (NOT 5/14/1864), and after some trackwork changes at Napoleon & St. Charles, the Napoleon line also joined the Louisiana line, terminating at Baronne & Canal (NOT 9/15/1864). The NO&C had built a large station at Napoleon & St. Charles, on the River side of St. Charles, the Gulf side of Napoleon.
In late 1866, Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard leased the NO&C. Like his predecessor, Charles Zimpel, the general had advanced knowledge of railway engineering and demonstrated his expertise in the massive and successful rehabilitation of the war worn and badly used New Orleans Jackson & Great Northern RR, the city's outlet to the rich mid-American fast growing agriculture and industrial area.
The 60-car Stephenson order of 1867 was one of Beauregard's initial NO&C improvements. On December 1, 1866 the double tracking of Baronne began service, and people knew the end of the “sky scrapers” was near (DP 12/2/1866). Steam locomotives were permanently retired in 1867. The NO&C was ready for the well-built Stephenson cars, as well as wondrous experimental motive power promising to replace the mule with new inventions, all with Gen. Beauregard's financial support. For a detailed study of these innovations, see S pp. 14-16 and G pp. 48-56. Briefly, these were:
1. Overhead cable (P. G. T. Beauregard U. S. patent #97343, 11/30/1869), trials on NO&C near Napoleon Station for months.
2. Pneumatic Propulson (Charles W. Wailey) 1868, Crescent City RR.
3. Thermo-specific, or “Superheated Water”, also “Bottled Steam” (Sylvester L. Langdon and Dr. Emile Lamm) 1872-73 on NO&C.
4. Ammonia Distillate (Dr. Emile Lamm) July 1870.
5. Chloride of Calcium Engine (Dr. Lamm's improvement of #4 — U. S. patent #124594 of March 12, 1872). See G for P, text p. 51.
The Thermo-Specific locomotives of Lamm (with Gen. Beauregard's support) became the power pulling one BT car per engine on the Napoleon to Carrollton end of the NO&C. A transfer at Napoleon Station was an annoyance to the public, unfortunately.
|This detail from a larger photo shows a Lamm Thermo-Specific locomotive pulling a single BT horsecar along what is today St. Charles Ave., in the late 1880s, toward the end of operation of this type of loco. Compare the loco to the one in S, page 16, and compare the horsecar to the ones in S, page 107. — Courtesy The Historic New Orleans Collection Museum/Research Center, Acc. no. 1922.214.171.124|
The NO&C pre-electric era roster after the Stephenson cars arrived 1867-1867 changed little until the large-scale car RB program, starting in 1888 under Supt. C. V. Haile's direction.
|1867||61 cars, 226 mules.||G p. 46|
|1868||59 cars (40 for Carrollton, 14 for Jackson, 5 for branches — reduction of two cars not explained), 249 horses and mules, 130 men.||DP 7/26/1868|
|1874||59 cars, 249 horses and mules, 10 Lamm Thermo-Specific locos, 140 men.||Jewell's Crescent City Illus.|
|1887||66 cars, 200 horses, 19 “dummies”.||SRJ|
Supt. Haile said of the NO&C RB program: “Many cars completely RB, as to be considered new cars” (NO&C 1888 Annual Report). PM were fitted with “stabilizers” (P in S p. 107, car 63). Interior view of car 63 (S p. 106) bears inscription “Louis Y. Atter, NO&C RR Co., 1891.” This is a RB mulecar with DR, or a Stephenson new car (probably the latter), not a St. Louis Car Co. product.
In 1888, all Lamm “motors” were retired, and the annual report that year claimed 30 BT cars completely RB. In 1889, the annual report showed 21 BT RB , and the annual report of 1890, 17 more RB and two cars BLT.
The 1891 annual report notes the 3 new Stephensons and sale of 3 cars “to Texas” (location not mentioned), plus 4 “dummies repaired” for sale. Electrical signal bells and “Alsop” battery powered change makers installed on some cars. In 1890/1891, 235 mules powered the cars, a ratio of approximately 4 animals per car, a testament to the almost grade-less New Orleans terrain and to the light weight of the BT cars.
While the BT cars were Stephenson-BLT, the NO&C ordered parts from Brill:
|140||Ash Sash||ON 1924 1/19/1888||85||Ash Sash “Glazed”||ON 2599 6/22/1889|
|1000||“Ft. Panels”||ON 1977 2/21/1888||112||Ash Sash Frames||ON 3031 6/14/1890|
|"||"||ON 2345 2/14/1889||127||Ash Sash||ON 3975 1/8/1892 “soon”|
Two possible DD types that NO&C might have operated raise some curiosity. NC p. 38 has P (print) of a car with inverted “V” steps on its sides. Francis (“Frank”) Henry Temple Bellew made that print, which supposedly exists at the Cabildo (La. State Museum in N. O.), according to NC. Ballou's Pictorial Drawing-Room Companion featured it in Vol. 9, p. 156 in 1855. The cars seems to be based on an illustration in Illustrated London News of November 9, 1853 of an almost identical DD car with side-mounted steps which actually inaugurated Paris' first tramway that year. Joseph Alphonse Loubat promoted the Paris tramway and designed the car. In 1853 Loubat visited New York promoting street railways and did visit New Orleans later, even buying property there. At first, the authors of S regarded the Bellew print as a badly imitated DD (Worsdell), but the Loubat connection is intriguing.
The other questionable DD car type is the one on NO&C car 63's middle waist panel (P in S p. 107), almost a duplicate of the DD car on the cover of the music sheets for the song “Tramway Gallop” by J. Burgmein, circa 1881 (G p. 55). The latter cars have the narrow curved steps Lindauer wrote about.
Copyright © 2008, 2014, 2015 Louis C. Hennick. All rights reserved.
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