Due to constrained availability of information on car names, paint schemes, etc., I am modeling a JES train as of the 1957 refresh of the cars.

The paint scheme was pastel blue with dark blue lines and lettering...

The car names known to be: Raleigh, Syracuse, York, Hamburg, Shelby, Florence, Clearfield, Charleston, Charlotte, Danville, Elmira, Corning, and Binghamton. Stratesville, already known as car #1, was also on the train. [Passenger Car List] 

Photographic evidence also maps the CHARLESTON car to #11 and the CORNING to #13.

The 1957 train was known to run with 50 cars, including 14 "coaches," 34 flats (Warren & Mount Vernon), a box car and a stock car. I figure a good representation will be 20-22 cars, so I am shooting for seven "coaches," 14 flat cars, and a stock car.

 

 

Introduced 1957
Base Color Pastel blue
Letterboard (base)
Windowband (base) 
Lower Band (base) with dark blue stripe below windows
Lettering Dark blue
Car Name Location Upper center below windows
Car Number

Simple number at each end in dark blue

Roof Silver (or perhaps white)
Other Notes Goldsack noted the cars included the car names of the towns the carnival was scheduled to attend. This may have been the first scheme to feature car names (other than #1).

 

 

Introduced 1935
Base Color Pullman green
Letterboard

(base)

Windowband (base) 
Lower Band

(base)

Lettering unknown
Car Name Location unknown
Car Number

unknown

 

Roof unknown
Other Notes

The railroad-based show started in 1935.

Goldsack wrote (p. 15) that as of 1937 the cars were in Pullman green. It is unlikely that they wore anything different prior to that date.

Flats, box, and stock cars were painted burnt orange with blue lettering. [p. 15, Goldsack]

 

 Strates train 1970scheme

Introduced 1970
Base Color Pale yellow
Letterboard

Red, on the red unit

Pastel blue, on the blue unit

Various sayings on many of the letterboards.

Windowband (base) 
Lower Band

(base)

"STRATES SHOWS" in pastel blue with black outline, on the red unit

"STRATES SHOWS" in red with black outline, on the blue unit

Lettering Gold with a black outline
Car Name Location Black text within a gold emblem on the lower band at each end of the car just inside of the car number.
Car Number

White number on a red field within a gold outlined circle, on the blue unit

White number on a pastel blue field within a gold outlined circle, on the red unit

 

Roof Silver
Other Notes

Starting in 1970, the JES field two trains -- a red unit and a blue unit.

There were 27 cars on the red train and 23 cars on the blue train.

In 1970, the car names were #2 Syracuse, Ny. , #3 Hamburg, Ny. #4 Dunkirk, Ny. #5 Raleigh, Nc. #6 Clearfeild, Pa. #7 Nashville, Tn. #8 York, Pa. #9 Winston-Salem, NC #10 Harrington, De. #11 Savannah, Ga. #14 Danville, Va. #12 Diner #21 Baggage-Generator.

 

 

Introduced 1992
Base Color Maroon
Letterboard

(base) 

Windowband (base) 
Lower Band

(base)

Lettering White outlined scroll, with red fill, and white "James E. Strates Shows".
Car Name Location Letterboard, in yellow
Car Number Whte outlined oval at each end, with red fill, and white number. One end contains the prefix "JES ".
Roof White
Other Notes

Initial date of scheme documented by Goldsack (p.90).

#53, the caboose, was painted in bright red with yellow lettering. [p.90, Goldsack]