In Praise of Bakeries, Part I

Bakeries make for fascinating operations on a model railroad. They can be modelled with minimal facilities (such as the unloading areas – silos, tanks and such) or full blown with the entire bakery building and office complex should you have the space. Being space poor, the silo and tank thing (really the most detailed part of the operation) appeals to me the most. I’ve blogged about Bakeries as on-line customers (Mrs Baird’s on the Bergstrom Lead in Austin, TX) here before as has Lance Mindheim (Miami, FL).

Small and larger bakeries continued to use rail for inbound loads until the early 1990s. Rails West has some great history in this post (part 1 of at least 2) and it is really worth the read. I hope that you enjoy. Thanks go to Rails West for sharing his personal knowledge of the industry.

Rails West

I lived in Roswell, NM, for much of the early 1990s.  One of the pleasures of early 1990 Roswell was driving by the Rainbo bakery and smelling the fresh bread being baked.  Another treat for me was to check out the spur where the Santa Fe Railway brought in covered hoppers of flour.

Roswell II Site of Bakery in Roswell.  Green dots denote the former unloading area.

Sadly, it is all gone now with the exception of a few relics.  The green dots above show where the cars were spotted for unloading and the base upon which the silos sat that stored the flour.  The flour was pneumatically carried from the train car to the silos and from the silos to the bakery.  I am not sure if the remaining structure was related to the bakery.  I remember to pneumatic tube that carried the flour to the bakery was pretty long and may…

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About Andrew Martin

After a long IT and Telecommunications career in the USA and Australia, I've decided I need a break, I've changed focus and now work in the public transport sector - a complete change of pace. Hobby wise I'm focused on model railway layout building and modelling. I blog, write and publish as often as I am able.
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