PULLMAN, PLAN # 2410 “GOTHIC”, 12-1 STANDARD SLEEPING CARS
From the years 1910 to 1913, the 1st steel "12-1" Pullman built Standard sleeping cars were built to Pullman Plan # 2410, in the "Gothic" style. "Gothic" styled cars were built of steel, but various grooves and rivets on the exterior gave the appearance of wood, as many passengers feared riding in steel passenger cars during an electrical storm. Usually the windows had an either squared or rounded upper sash, smaller washroom windows were rounded, and the interiors still had ornate wooden fixtures. Of course, the well known clerestory roof, the norm for railway passenger cars was used, and at 1st glance, there appeared to be little difference in appearance between the older wooden and newer steel cars.
As built these cars were non-air-conditioned, rode on 6 wheel trucks and had a 32 Volt electrical system. The space was sold and assigned according to Pullman Diagram Form # 5. Most of the 1st steel cars were assigned to NYC & PRR, where wooden cars had been banned from the tunnels, under New York City, leading to Grand Central & Pennsylvania Stations. Soon older wooden cars were scrapped, steel sheathed or downgraded to TOURIST service or assigned secondary routes, as “Gothic” cars started to appear on all major Named Trains in the U.S.A.
The “12-1” configuration of the cars, were the most common style of Sleeping car, used in North America. Originally built of wood, and later heavyweight steel, there were about 6,000 “12-1” sleeping cars in service during the 1920’s, serving well into the mid 1960’s.
During the 1920’s most of the cars built to Plan # 2410, had their exterior plating upgraded to blend in with the more modern “Steel Heavyweight” sleeping cars being added to the Pullman Roster. The rounded windows were squared off, and the upper window sashes were plated over, with a wider letter board.
During the years 1930/31 many cars were upgraded to Pullman Plan # 2410I, still offering “12-1” arrangements. I am assuming, these cars were modernized, not only with updated exterior plating, but also had mechanics and interiors upgraded to be similar to Pullman Plan # 3410, that newer Heavyweight “12-1” sleeping cars were built to.
Only a small portion of the cars built to Plan # 2410, kept their original plan and remained property of the Pullman Company, their entire service life, most serving until 1960/61 before, either being scrapped or sold. Various air-conditioning systems, depending the cars’ assignment, had been installed during the late 1930’s. At this time, more equipment boxes were installed on the cars’ underbelly and portions of the clerestory roofs were enclosed, hiding ductwork.
In the late 1930’s and early 40’s, Pullman scrapped many of the surplus, Plan # 2410 cars, these cars being 25+ years old and rather than upgrading, cars were probably cannibalised for various spare parts, before being destroyed. The cars, scrapped in the late 1930’, or early 1940’s may have not had their exterior plating upgraded, as well air-conditioning had never been installed. Cars in service after 1950 were assigned Pullman Car Codes.
In 1948, various Plan # 2410 sleeping cars, still serving in their original configuration, were sold off, to various railroads, after Pullman lost an anti-trust suit. Most were sold to the companies, who operated the various trains, where the cars had originally been assigned. Owned by the various railroads, the cars were leased back to Pullman, who continued to operate and maintain them. In most cases, the original car name was kept, but B&O, CNR, NYC, and PRR were some of the companies that also assigned road numbers, in addition to the car name. Cars in service after 1950 were assigned Pullman Car Codes
Most cars were retired in the 1950’s, but several operated into the 1960’s, before their lease with Pullman expired and on occasion were marshalled into consists with lightweight and stainless steel streamlined equipment. When the Pullman lease expired, cars were usually retired, assigned on secondary runs or downgraded to crew dormitory cars. Cars retired, were either scrapped, assigned to work service or sometimes totally retrofitted to serve as another style of passenger car. Some cars were listed as being in Government Storage, having been retired before their leases had expired.
During the years 1937/41 many cars were converted from Pullman Plan # 2410 to Pullman Plan # 4061 (AC installed as rebuilt) or Pullman Plan # 4061A (AC previously installed), classed TOURIST sleeping cars with 14 Sections, with space sold and assigned to Pullman Diagram Form # 2. All cars listed (so far) had the Pullman Mechanical Brine AC system installed. The cars were renumbered in Pullman’s “3000 – 3100” air-conditioned TOURIST series. In 1947 due to a shortage of 1st class sleeping cars, some of the cars were upgraded to sleeping cars and renamed in the "LITTLE" series. In 1950/51, the cars were downgraded to TOURIST and their original “3000 – 3100” numbers were restored. At this time most of the cars had their AC systems disconnected, the systems probably cannibalized for parts to keep other heavyweight Pullmans (existing AC units had been in service since the 1930’s) in working order. The cars spent their final years serving secondary trains or sitting in coach yards waiting to be assigned for backup service or scrapping. By 1960 the cars were scrapped, or sold for coach or work service assignments.
Because of the Depression in the late 1930’s and World War II, in the early 1940’s, many of the Plan # 2410 sleeping cars were downgraded to “13 Section” TOURIST sleeping cars, with space sold and assigned to Pullman Diagram Form # 45. No structural changes were made, but the drawing room became Section # 13, with the annex sealed off, and hallway door removed. Most cars were non-air conditioned, and renumbered, with car names dropped.
Downgraded cars, that had existing air conditioning systems, had been assigned TOURIST sleeping car numbers, but by 1941 they were renumbered in the “5000 – 5100” air-conditioned TOURIST sleeper series. In 1947 due to a shortage of 1st class sleeping cars, some of the cars were upgraded to sleeping cars and renamed in the "GIANT" series. In 1950/51, the cars were downgraded to TOURIST and their original “5000 – 5100” numbers were restored.
In 1950, various Plan # 2410 sleeping cars, had their service life extended, but were downgraded to TOURIST sleeping cars and were assigned numbers in the “5000 – 5100” air-conditioned TOURIST sleeper series.
In 1950/51 most of the “5000 – 5100” series TOURIST sleepers, had their AC systems disconnected, the systems probably cannibalized for parts to keep other heavyweight Pullmans (existing AC units had been in service since the 1930’s) in working order. The cars spent their final years serving secondary trains or sitting in coach yards waiting to be assigned for backup service or scrapping. By 1960 the cars were scrapped, or sold for coach or work service assignments.
In the early 1940’s World War II was in progress, with a shortage of materials and labour to build new railway passenger equipment. Troops needed to be moved, which overtaxed existing equipment owned by various railroads. Pullman created a supply of surplus sleeping cars, which was sold and used in a variety of configurations. Most cars were rebuilt to COACHES or COLONIST cars, with many used as coaches without alterations.
Updated November 3, 2006 by Richard E. Montgomery