Hopper Car – Montour 847

Builder: Pullman Standard Car Company
Built: 1960
Original Owner: Pennsylvania Railroad
Capacity: 70 Tons
Class: AAR Class HT, PRR Class H39
Acquired by Age of Steam Roundhouse: mid-1990’s

While this 1960-built coal hopper car served the might Pennsylvania Railroad, it represents a lesser-known coal hauling railroad in the Age of Steam collection.

The Montour Railroad (MRR) carried coal from the numerous mines of Southwestern Pennsylvania to interchanges with the major railroads in the area. At its peak, the Montour transported other freight and even ran scheduled passenger trains. The railroad’s bread and butter was always coal. When the mines began to close in the mid-1950’s, the Montour began to slowly decline, finally ending operations in 1984. Chief Mechanical Officer Tim Sposato spent the early part of his railroad career as a Montour employee.

This particular hopper car – formerly PRR 667991 – was restored under Tim’s direction to represent MRR 847. The real MRR 847 was the last of 100 three-bay hoppers of this type to be pulled from service on the Montour in the 1950’s. First acquired by the Ohio Central Railroad in the 1990’s, it was a frequent site on railfan steam freight photo trains. In 2018, it received a new coat of paint and new lettering by Age of Steam Roundhouse Museum’s Bill Hanslik Sr. and Bill Hanslik Jr.