Vignettes of the Chesapeake and Ohio

Vignettes of the Chesapeake and Ohiocover

Clear Block Productions

Length: 55 minutes

Tine Period:1952 to 1972

Locations: West Virginia and Ohio…

Sources: Vic Ketcham, Joe Slanser, Karl Walters.

Producer: Todd Miller

MSRP: 30.00

Vintage Chesapeake and Ohio, is one of those hard to find railroads. The public roads in West Virginia were tough, and few cinematographers traveled there. Even the later years are not plentiful. While there is limited C&O film in the market, there are no full shows. Clear Block has three main sources for this release. Additional film sources were also used, including Producer Todd Miller.

The late, Mr. Miller takes a whirlwind tour of C&O. Concentrating on Ohio and West Virginia. This fast paced program does delve a little deeper at some key points. Meadow River Lumber is one visit, with Shays and a Heisler.

co e8 train 46 maumee riverC&O Train 46 approaches the Maumee River swing bridge behind an E8.

co gp35 gp30 1964 marionNew EMD GP35 engines bracket a GP30 at Marion in 1964.

goldwater 1964 marion js

Barry Goldwater Campaign Special enters Marion, Ohio. Complete with a classic platform observation car. Public address speakers and a campaign sign adorn the rear. Year- 1964.

Appears to have been a direct video to digital transfer. There are some flaws and roughness. Many times, a squiggle is visible, at the very top of the picture. An inquiry to Clear Block informed me, the defect is present in the master. Not a deal breaker to me, just be aware.

f7fp7setLearned numerous facts about C&O power. Here, F7ABA set combines with FP7 engines. The FP7 were usually assigned to freight service. They were ‘protection’ for the E8 fleet.

co 7506 sd18 columbusUncommon SD18 models at Columbus. C&O 7506 rides on traded-in Alco RSD-5 trucks.

The film quality ranges from fair, to good- very good overall. Appears as 8mm all- color, in original condition. The color balance looks good for the most part. However, there are sections where the balance becomes marginal. No train sounds in this show.

Todd Miller has credits for script and narration. An informative script and a good narrative. This release is an older one, there are no maps or graphics. There is quite a bit of musical background. He points out the uncommon and the usual locomotives as the show progresses. Very good at: locations, cinematographers, years and special highlights.

co 3790C&O 3790 is a new GP40 and leads GP30 3034, and GP9 6017 at yard speed.

co 3034 gp30

co 6017 gp7

A multitude of runbys showcase C&O power throughout. Alternative shots from aboard passenger cars and brief loco cab are included, but these are the bulk of camera skake.

co 2704 lima    Steam is the first order of business and begins in 1952. Glimpses of New York Central, Virginian plus Norfolk & Western steamers too.

vgn fmFairbanks Morse was chosen for it’s strong specs for heavy train pulling. Hardcore steam men. Virginian would not give diesels the status of having numbers painted on the body!

vgn 906 sideVirginian 906 is akin to the C&O Allegheny class. Here is a pan shot of this huge engine which is idle at Princeton, WV.

Virginian has a feature that offers: steam, diesel, electric and an unusual motor car.

co 377 colombus 1960Columbus, Ohio celebrated 110 Years of Railroading in 1960. Ten Wheeler: C&O 377 makes a dramatic entrance! Vic Ketchum filmed the event and rode a special. Interesting.

co L1 hudsonClass L-1 Hudson in streamlined attire. The L-1, will make a case for the New York Central Dreyfuss Hudson as the best looking streamlined Hudson. Kudos for inclusion of the L-1.

coal kickbackCoal dock maritime facility. Detailed segment of the process. Fascinating footage to see.

co 3850 tower

co 90253Plenty of cabooses in a variety of paint and types. Model railroaders take note on this one. Atlas Trainman style with the odd blank door end. One never knows what may be seen in a video. Some freight cars are seen, as they pass on a few trains. Watch for a Shelby Mustang next to a farm tractor on an auto rack.

Vignettes of Chesapeake & Ohio has the rare film factor going for it. The story is well told. Film issues are why the rating isn’t higher. Composition such as lighting, shaky camerawork and source tape problems, are all present. Yet, it is a good show of this hard to find road.

Recommended, this release does cover classic C&O.

Rating: 3 Stars

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