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Norfolk & Western Steam Variety DVD
This program is a real variety pack with a lot of diverse subject matter. The first segment is 1953 footage by Victor Shattock where we see 4-8-4 J class number 609 arrive in Lynchburg and he rides it toward the west with several scenes shot out the rear of the Powhaton Arrow. This and the Virginian footage is color 8mm originals. Warren W. Scholl shot the Virginian in the last year or so of steam passenger operations which by this time were down to Roanoke to Norfolk with class 200 series 4-6-2's. We ride a train to Altavista, VA from Roanoke and back. Then we see some switching around Roanoke and visit the roundhouse, before getting a couple of shots in the area of Norfolk and Suffolk with the passenger train. Virginian footage is rare on dvd's as we were told there was only perhaps one other such program available. Virginian was merged into the N&W shortly after this footage was shot. Our next segment is an odd one as its 16mm black and white that looks to be something shot by the railroad, or for the railroad. We begin with engine 612 at Roanoke near the roundhouse, then are riding the train west to Bluefield. This is all shot off the rear of an observation business car of the Powhaton Arrow. Some N&W officials are seen at Bluefield, so we are not sure if this was out-take footage for some testing or what it was. Some of the footage was speeded-up by the cameraman, as he must have been bored, but we slowed it down(its not perfect but its better than wild fast) to close to normal as we could make it. We pass several trains along the way including an M class 4-8-0 on a train at Christiansburg. The final segment of the video is a June 1958 visit to N&W steam country by Perry Becker. This lovely 16mm color footage has lots of meat and potatoes as they say, with passenger trains in steam(the last month steam ran on the passenger trains before leased diesels were used), and freight action. We also visit Shafers Crossing Roundhouse and engine facility where we see all sorts of stuff, including a 2-8-8-2 working the hump. Then its on to Blue Ridge Grade where we see a lot of action around Bonsack, on the west slope of Blue Ridge Grade. We see helpers running light and working as rear pushers. The final shot is a 3-engine train with a Y on the front of a class A(1200), and another Y pushing this coal train. We'll see 2-3 J class engines as well. There are a few scenes west of Roanoke that they shot to and from Roanoke from their home in Minnesota. This is a fast paced show with all this variety.
- Run Time 30 Minutes Plus 30 Minutes of Previews
- Music and Narration with Maps
- Screen Format: Full Screen (4:3)
- No region code; can be played in NTSC DVD players worldwide
- Produced by Greg Scholl 2010