A Blue Caboose?

N&W 518675

Though we think of cabooses as being red in color, they have actually been painted almost every color under the sun. In the old days, many conductors who were assigned a waycar, could paint and decorate them any way they chose - within reason of course. Although the tradition on many railroads was that the caboose should be painted a bright red, on many lines it eventually became the practice to paint them in the same corporate colors as locomotives (see photos on our Caboose History page).

Caboose MotelNorfolk & Western Railway's C31-class cabooses, of which Warrenton's #518554 is part of, originally came painted in a blue color with yellow markings. This blue, somewhat affectionately referred to as Pevler blue, was named after N&W's 10th president Herman Pevler. The cars were re-painted in the classic red which you now see on #518554 in the latter part of the 1960s.

If you get a chance to visit Lancaster County, Pennsylavania, be sure to visit the Red Caboose Motel. There, you will not only get the chance to sleep in a railroad caboose, but get to see 38 cabooses all painted in their original liveries!

(Photo of N&W 518675 by Kevin Sprayberry. Used with permission.)