THE OPERATING DEPARTMENT

The lifeblood of the Southern Pacific was its operating department.  The vice president of operations was responsible for operations, engineering, mechanical, communications, operating agreements, policing, safety, and other functions.  Of these, the three main areas were operating, engineering, and mechanical.  Employees in this areas worked in a coordinated manner 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and every day of the year to focus on one objective: to keep Southern Pacific's trains moving on schedule.  Their stories will be presented in the exhibits below.

FLB Lawrence, KS 8044W 08-07-91.jpg

The SSW 8044 at Lawrence, Kansas on August 7, 1991.  Photo by Forrest L. Becht.