Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg

Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg

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Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredrickson's Railroading Journal Soft Cover 2001 160 pg
 
Steam to Diesel by Jim Fredricksons Railroading Journal   Soft Cover 2001 160 pages indexed  
This photo of Northern Pacific Class A-3 Northern-type locomotive 660 was the first reasonably decent train picture I ever took. We were on a family summer vacation in 1940, driving through Jamestown, North Dakota, when I spied this train at the station. Having developed a fondness for trains from previous trips taken by rail to the Midwest, I prevailed on my father to stop so I could take a picture of the 2660 with my new camera. (I'd recently purchased a Kodak Vigilant folding camera with adjustable lens openings and shutter speed up to 1/200 of a second. Little did I realize that someday I'd own a camera with the shutter speed of 1/4000 of a second!)
I had come a long way from my first attempt at locomotive photography in 1936, when I tried using a Kodak box camera to photograph one of the NP's Class A-2 2650 series-without notable success. My next camera was a 19( Univex plastic camera that fit in the palm of my hand. Its print size was 1" x 11/4". Although I still have a few of its pictures, I did not photograph any trains with it. My Kodak Vigilant camera was definitely an upgrade, and I was excited to use it on this vacation.
As frequently happens, this photo included more than just the intended image of the engine. The engineer, shown "oiling around," was a tall fellow, as measured against the locomotive's 6' 5" drive wheels. Farther down the way, a clerk is seen loading mail into the post office car. Attached to the two-year-old locomotive was the coal/water tender, with a handsome, curved design that greatly impressed this 13-yearold. All of the locomotives I had seen around Tacoma had old-fashioned, boxy-looking tenders.
Because my interest was piqued by the likes of hotshot engine 2660, after returning to Tacoma I rode my bicycle to Seattle in search of the newer engines. I was told at the Seattle Roundhouse that there were no such engines out here. (Later I found out why: they were too big to pass through the 1888 Stampede tunnel which had been constructed when locomotives were much smaller.) This news didn't dampen my interest, however, and I continued to visit Tacoma's Union Station with my camera.
I started working in the circulation department at the Tacoma News Tribune and became acquainted with the staff photographer, Howie Clifford. He used an immense 4" x 5" Speed Graphic camera which really impressed me. He was a very friendly fellow and with my camera took a picture of me holding his press camera.
In 1943, as a sophomore at Stadium High School, I was photographer for both the newspaper, the Stadium World, and the school annual, Tahoma. After school hours, I divided my spare time between the News Tribune and Union Station. That same year I had simultaneous job offers from both Dan Walton, sports editor of the paper, and Austin Ackley, chief dispatcher of the Northern Pacific. Each asked me to go to work for them. (World War II had created an immense shortage of civilian workers, so they were willing to hire youths like me.) Though it was a tough decision, I chose the Northern Pacific.
I lugged a camera with me wherever I went on the railroad. I dearly wanted a smaller version of Howie Clifford's Speed Graphic, but couldn't afford it, so I settled for an older, used Graflex. The Graflex had a fast shutter for action photos of trains in motion, but a somewhat "long" lens, which made it difficult to get back far enough to fit all of a locomotive in a photo. My next camera was a Kodak Tourist folding camera with a fast shutter and wide-angle lens. In the early 1970s, when my son was stationed in Japan on naval duty, he bought me a Mamiya press-type camera. It proved much more versatile than my Kodak Tourist. I wore it out, had a replacement stolen, and now possess a third one. These were or the medium format," 21/4" x 3N" film size, which I prefer for black and white enlarging. In recent years, I have used a Minolta 35 mm, which is much more compact for traveling.
I possess the negative of every picture I've taken, amounting to roughly 30,000, and I am still in the process of cataloging them. The job should take me well into the 21st century.

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