Conrail #21511 at Toledo, Ohio

Conrail class N7 caboose #21511 brings up the rear of a unit coal train in the Toledo, Ohio area in January 1982.

I found this negative in an old envelope of Toledo shots, but with no information other than the date. I’ve been trying to recall the location, but cannot place it. My first thought was near Alexis Tower, but the road and the Ford Trucks dealer sign on the right don’t match. I see that was able to drive my Chevy Caprice Classic to the trackside.

If you have any ideas about the exact location, leave a comment!

UPDATE 20 December 2023—reader Duane was able to pinpoint the location: “Actually I believe it’s just north of Alexis. Looks like a loaded Detroit Edison coal train with the hopper truck springs compressed. That’s the old Ford truck dealership at Alexis and Benore road. The car is on Stickney rd. Likely before the overpass over the Detroit mains was opened or built.” Thanks, Duane!

Conrail #21511 was built by the New York Central Railroad’s Despatch Shops in East Rochester, New York in 1948 as NYC #20202. It was one of the first three cars built, possibly as a test of a new design. The design was popular, as eventually 100 N7 cars were built, and the design later continued to be used—with variations—into the Conrail era. It’s most likely this car was scrapped, as I cannot find it on any preservation lists.


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