SP GS-4 4457
Scanned Photo Postcard
Scan is presented for historical/archival purposes
No copyright is claimed or intended
From the back of the card:
"Red automatic signal #2553 - the "dated" old wig-wag crossing warning - the still "orange, red and black" painted engine - and the train's number, "72" - paint the perfect picture here of yesterday's peerless railroading. The first three digits on the signal's number-plate are 253, the mile long Southern Pacific's Coast Line in which the picture was taken. So - just about a mile below San Luis Obispo, California, is the spot. That swinging crossing "alerter" bespeaks of many years ago. The "Daylight" colored, twin-eyed Northern Type locomotie reminds us of the flashy "Fifties, when people rode the trains. And when the Coast Mail, the well-known "headend" rattler with a rear-end coach, was still No. 72 - it was at least till 1954. In 1955 she became no. 90, headed south (eastbound).
This locomotive, this big 4457, flaunts silver-gray plummages as if she were in charge of the "Daylight". Yet the lowly mail-and-express train trails her haughty tender in its smoky wake. Perhaps her steamy sinews are exultant as she dreams of runs before her time - when "72" adorned more ancient engines at the helm of that first old-world, delightful - "Daylight Limited"...
The post card was published by Vanishing Vistas of Sacramento, CA in 1974. The photo is by Donald Duke, the text by Howard W. Bull.