Homes on Wheels, Mobile Offices
Heritage Rail Trail County Park
Cabooses, also known as cabin cars, once traveled up and down the Pennsylvania Railroad, bringing up the rear of freight trains. They served many functions for the crew: office, workshop, observation platform, and living quarters.
The cabin car was the domain of the rear brakeman and conductor. The brakeman monitored brake pressure, and looked through the cupola window for sparks or smoke, a sign of wheel or bearing problems. The conductor tracked paperwork for cargo loaded and unloaded at each stop so that the Railroad could accurately bill its customers.
Class N5b — This model was introduced in 1937. It was based on the N5, built in 1914 as the world's first steel cabin car.
Class N8 — The N8, launched in 1950, was the last cabin car designed by the Pennsylvania Railroad. It is three feet longer than the N5a.
A View Inside — In addition to using it as a dormitory, the crew stored tools, spare parts, and emergency equipment in the cabin car.
Notes on the diagrams:
Steel I-beams: unique to the Pennsylvania Railroad
Class number: identifies model, month and year of manufacture
Red color: Indicates that cabin cars are part of freight transport system
Erected by York County Parks.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Railroads & Streetcars. A significant historical year for this entry is 1937.
Location. 39° 44.415′ N, 76° 42.034′ W. Marker is in New Freedom, Pennsylvania, in York County. Marker is on North Front Street north of Maple Alley, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 117 North Front Street, New Freedom PA 17349, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. All Aboard! (within shouting distance of this marker); The Farmers' Line (within shouting distance of this marker); Summit Grove (approx. half a mile away); Lest We Forget To Remember (approx. 1.4 miles away); Spurgeon Milton Keeny (approx. 2.1 miles away); Amanda Berry Smith (1837-1915) (approx. 2.2 miles away); Freeland (approx. 2½ miles away in Maryland); Mason and Dixon Line (approx. 2.6 miles away in Maryland). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New Freedom.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 6, 2021. It was originally submitted on March 23, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 112 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 23, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.