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Recollections of the T&P

Recollections of the T&P

Thanks for sharing these stories and photos...

T.E. "Ed" Albright

My name is Ann Albright Searcy. I grew up on the T&P line. Alot of it "fuzzy" to me because my Dad died when I was 19. So, my memories are from 40-50 years ago. I recently decided to write down my memories of the railroad when it was a proud way to travel for my children & grandchildren since they have never been on a train.

My grandfather was Tomas Anthony Albright & he was killed before I was born when boiler exploded on a steam engine outside of Marshall, Tx. Someone told me that there is a place that the railroad men call "Albright Switch" & I am wondering if that is where the train derailed. My father was T.E. Albright (Ed) & he worked for the T&P all his life. I believe that he started out as a fireman & moved through the ranks to become official in Dallas as Mechanical Supertendent. At one time we lived in Alexandria, La.(probably 1950-1954) & the business car #5 was his business car. I have many childhood memories of traveling in that car. It was beautiful with mahogany walls.

This is a picture of my father T.E.(Ed) Albright on business car #5. It was taken sometime in the early to mid fifties while he was superintendent of the Louisiana Division with T&P. Working for the T&P was the only job he ever had until his death in 1962 at the age of 58. He loved his work & never missed a day of work for being sick until just before his death.

This is another picture of my Dad (Ed Albright) boarding the train. He is in the center. I don't know who the other 2 people are but I thought it was a cool picture of times past.

Ann Searcy

Howard DeShazo

This is me when I was 12 years of age in a town called Putnam, TX. (Webmaster's note - located in Callahan County, between Abilene and Cisco.) My dad had a five and dime store which sat only a few yards from the T & P tracks. Each afternoon around 4:30, this freight train would sidetrack here in Putnam, awaiting the Sunshine Special passenger train that sped through.

You could tell when the Sunshine Special was near, for the large plate-glass windows began to shake as it sped full throttle through this small oil field town on its way to meet the Southern Pacific in Sierra, TX to make connections for California.

As a delivery boy for the Ft Worth Star Telegram, I watched many times the bundle of papers get sucked under the wheels when the mail car man kicked them off. No paper delivery that day.

One day, my dad and I were asked if we would like to see the engine cab. The engineer allowed us to climb up and see the interior. I was dazzled by all the gauges and the fire burning inside the fire-pot. I will never forget that day. It was a time when humanity exceeded technology.

Howard DeShazo
Santa Fe NM

Jack Kelley

My name is Jack Anthony Kelley. I am the great-great-grandson of James Anthony "Red" Kelley, who was the engineer on the first train into Fort Worth--T&P Railroad, engine #20--on July 19, 1876. I am attempting find out something about engine #20: who built it, where, when, its service history with T&P (and any other railroad), and when and where it was decommissioned.

As a T&P buff, you may appreciate this amazing article from the old Fort Worth Daily Democrat that announced the train's arrival in July, 1876:

"Yesterday morning at 11:23 a.m., engine #20 of the Texas & Pacific Railroad, Kelley engineer and Beale conductor, uttered its shrill scream within the corporate limits arousing the panthers from his lair, startling the birds from their nests in aflight, and carrying joy to many anxius who have waited long and patiently for the sounds that then for the first time reverberated through the hills and valleys around the beautiful city of Fort Worth."

Sincere regards,
Jack A. Kelley
Devine, Texas

(Webmaster's Note - According to my research, Engine #20 was a Class A 4-4-0 type, built by Baldwin and placed in service by the T&P in July, 1873. It had 16x24" cylinder displacement and rode on 57" wheels. Its eventual disposition is not known to me, but in 1900, T&P built a second and slightly larger #20 in its shops. This 2nd #20 is listed as "Scrapped" in 1929.)

Johnny Long

My name is Johnny Long, and I just wanted to tell you how much I really enjoy your T&P site. The old Mineola-Ft.Worth line ran behind my house when I was growing up in Southeast Dallas, and my best friend and I used to get fusees from some of the caboosemen when the train would stop at a nearby crossing and take the first car or two up the line to a warehouse district before returning with three or four newer engines to make the rest of the trip. In the interim, my friend and I would race the length of the train just for the treat of sitting in the caboose for a few minutes and getting a paper-cup of ice water. The only one who wouldn't let us do it--since it was against regulations--was a guy named Buck Brown, an older fellow. But some of the younger ones--Joe Barnett and Charlie Green are names I remember--would, and they didn't mind us having a couple of fusees apiece.

Even one time, while the train waited at a switch-track for an extended period, an engineer named Hap Gentry allowed us up in the cab and showed us some of the controls and all. It was a magical time, and I relish those memories. I'm even now searching for a scale-model caboose like the ones from back then, just to have as a reminder of the old #2514 that seemed to always be on the freights that came past my back yard then.

Thank you for bringing back so vividly some of those most cherished memories.

Kindest regards and best wishes--
--Johnny Long

Tom Roberts

My thanks to Amanda Roberts Mather, for sharing these photos of her grandfather, Tom Roberts.

Beside engine #661, a Class I-1-d 2-10-4

Next to a steam generator car, believed to be in Dallas

Amanda writes - My paternal grandparents, Tom and Eunice Roberts, in front of the Scottsville, TX T&P station; ca. 1947.  Tom was a scale inspector on the Ft. Worth Division, covering territory from  New Orleans to El Paso, and north to Texarkana.  He was based in Marshall, where he lived with his wife and two sons.  He worked for the T&P until he died in 1971.





Michael J. Vollmer

My great grandfather was William G. Vollmer, president of B&T from 1945-1958, I grew holding great respect for the railway, model trains, and it's history and I have always been humbled by the power of Locomotives and continue to be captivated by thier presence. I feel this site has portrayed the spirit of the T&P well. I enjoyed reading everything you have provided here and intend to search your links for more information and collectibles. Thank You, God Bless

Michael J. Vollmer
St. Louis, MO