Ridgely (Springfield), Illinois 1907 -

Chicago And Alton Railroad 

Coaling Tower/Station
Circa 1910 - Bulletin No. 15 Photo Page



Here is  a  page from the Bulletin No. 15 from Roberts and Schaefer Co. of Chicago. It dates from around 1912.

Note: photo was taken shortly after completion of construction.

Ridgely (Springfield), Illinois 1907 - Chicago And Alton Railroad 
C & A RR  Type: Holmen type with R. & S. Co's patent tram car distributing system. 
Elevating capacity, 60 tons per hour. 
Coal stored overhead in two 100 ton reinforced concrete bins on opposite sides of main tracks. 
Power: Gasoline engine..

Ridgely (Springfield), Illinois - Chicago And Alton Railroad coal tower station

 
Coaling stations/towers were designed to fuel steam locomotives.  They came in all sizes and shapes.  Some were behemoth structures, while others consisted of a pile of coal, and a power shovel along a sidetrack. In the 19th and early 20th century, coaling stations were an integral part of every railroad. There were numerous coal stations; most towns with locally based locomotives had some type of coal facility.  There were also coaling stations located at intervals along routes, so that locomotives of through trains could fill up quickly, and maintain their schedules. Some were combined with water and sand holding structures. The introduction of diesel locomotives, led to the replacement or abandonment of these structures, and the use of  smaller overhead tanks holding diesel fuel.
 
 
"We are always in advance of other engineers when it comes to improvements in the handling of coal... We claim the credit of promoting and bringing to its high point of efficiency, the Holmen or Balanced Bucket Type of Locomotive Coaling Station..."

Roberts and Schaefer Co. 
Consulting Engineers and Contractors
Old Colony Building
Chicago, U.S.A.

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