In the late afternoon light of 09 December 1981, Edward Hodges photographed Conrail’s northbound Clinton Local crossing Bidwell Street in Tecumseh, Michigan. The local is running on the Clinton Secondary Track and originated at Air Line Yard in Toledo, Ohio.
In approximately three month the line will be embargoed, and Conrail freight service will end forever. But on this day, the train (reduced from daily to being operated on an as-needed basis) has a respectable amount of traffic. Visible are gondolas of logs for Tri-County Logging and a flatcar of lumber for Pallox, both located at the end of the line in Clinton. The covered hoppers are likely just along for the ride, as no industries on the north end of the line used this type of car by this time.
Conrail #5999 is an EMD GP-7, formerly Erie-Lackawanna #1284, exx-Delaware, Lackawanna & Western #695, built in 1952. The dynamic brake grids have been plated over here, but in a 1978 photo they were still present.
Caboose #19834 is ex-New Haven Railroad #517. This type of caboose was common to the line in Penn Central and Conrail days, and #19834 would be present on the last train in March 1982. This car was still in existence in Elmira, NY in 2007. If you know the fate of the car, please comment below.