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Roger Hensley

Page Updated

  Railroads of Madison County
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey
Modern Circus Train

September 25th, 2000

Ron Buser had called a day or two before to let me know that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus train would be brought down from Elkhart by NS and taken on through Anderson to Hawthorne. He estimated the time of arrival in Anderson to be 7 to 7:30 pm. It would be failing light, but perhaps I could catch something with my digital camera.

Monday dawned rainy and dreary and I didn't feel well. In fact, I left work before noon and came home. About 3:35, I was in the den checking e-mail and listening to the railroad traffic jam in and around Anderson when I heard the dispatcher say that they had to get the trafic clear for the Circus Train. 'Circus Train?' What circus train? Some of the chatter on the scanner made it obvious that the train was just north of Anderson and then I heard the NS say they were still holding at Sefton's. That's at Second and John Street in Anderson, a terrible place to get photos.

While trying to decide if I felt well enough to drive over to John Street, the CSX dispatcher gave them the highball and I knew they had started my way. The decision was made. I would position myself by the warehouse at 31st and the track (BCW Diversified) and wait in the rain with my umbrella and camera. I could hear it whistling for the crossings as it came through downtown Anderson from the DOW, around Pearl Street and toward me. As I found later, it was the Red Unit Circus Train of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey circus. The fifty-five car train, consisted of four stock cars, thirty-two coaches and nineteen support equipment cars. These photos are the result. The first few were taken in 'burst mode' and the remainder single shot which produced better quality, but resulted in the loss of a number of cars.

'Twarn't good, but was the best I could do.

Click on the small photo to see the larger one...









...and no, these weren't all of the cars by any means.

Picture Credits:
All digital photos by Roger P. Hensley - 9/25/00.

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Copyright 2000 by Roger P. Hensley. All Rights Reserved.
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