PENNSYRR.COM by Jerry Britton

Jerry Britton's PRR Middle Division in HO Scale


The Merchants Despatch Transportation Company (MDT, also known as the Merchants Despatch Refrigerator Line) was established in 1857 or 1858 by the American Express Company of New York (then a freight forwarding service). The entity was reformed as a joint stock trading company on June 1, 1869, with ownership divided among the Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Indianapolis Railway (CCC&I), the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railway, and the New York Central Railroad (NYC), all part of the Cornelius Vanderbilt rail empire.


Notable Number Series

Series @ 118, 134 bore the reporting mark SUCX and were leased to Sioux City Dressed Beef.

Series @ 122 bore the reporting mark MIDX and were leased to Minnesota Iowa and Dakota Packing Company (MID).

Series 200-799 bore reporting mark DSDX and were leased to Dairy Shippers Despatch Company. (They owned others and also leased from National Car Company.)

Series 300-399 all-steel reefers appeared between 1948-50 and bore the reporting mark APPX and were leased to the Agar Packing Company (Chicago).

Series @ 401, 434 wood-side reefers would have been built circa 1936-37 and bore the reporting mark MERX and were leased to National Packing Company. They featured square-corner Dreadnaught ends and a Universal 2050 hand brake.

Series @ 547 bore the reporting mark MERX and were leased to National Packing Company.

Series @ 700 bore the reporting mark IBPX and were leased to Iowa Beef Packers (IBP).

Series @ 902, 908 were built before 1937 and were leased to Oscar Mayer.

Series 9000-9499 were built in 1947 and equipped with half stage icing and Preco FG-43 floor fans.

Series 9500-10999 were built in 1949-50s and equipped with half stage icing and Preco FK-3 air circulating fans

Series 11000-13999 were equipped for stage icing, air circulating fans, Miner D-3290-XL hand brake and the Standard Improved R2/4 Dreadnaught ends. Cars 12200-12699 had Equipco M-289-3 overhead fans. Some cars from this series bore the NYC logo.

Series 14000-14199 were equipped with plug doors, staged icing, and air circulating fans.

Series 16000-16799 bore the reporting mark NRC (Northern Refrigerator Car Line) and Illinois Central logo.

Series 17000-18999 were 1943-53 rebuilds of series 16000-18999 which were originally built in the 1930s. Rebuilding included half stage icing and Preco Model AA-28 air circulating fans.

Series 18500-19299 were all-steel cars with flat ends with the reporting mark NRC (Northern Refrigerator Car Line).

Series 19400-19499 were all-steel cars with reporting mark NRC (Northern Refrigerator Car Line). Until the merger with the Illinois Central, some bore the logo of the Bulf, Mobile and Ohio.

Series @ 52131 bore the reporting mark QMRX.

Paint Schemes