• Reclining Seat Coach trains effects

  • General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.
General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: mtuandrew, gprimr1

  by urr304
 
Before the introduction of the reclining seat coach [was not B&O first in early 1930s], the only comfortable overnight travel was a Pullman [specifically a section, upper or lower berth]. Coach seats were just padded and were bench style.

With the all coach trains such as The Trailblazer, the Pacemaker, the Columbian, the El Capitan; these trains were carrying multiples of their all sleeper brethern.

So, did the reclining seat coach do as much to the section sleeper as the roomette or perhaps even more?

I rode a number of overnight trains in coach; only a handful of trips west of Chicago were in sleepers, once across Canada, and only one Albany-Erie east of Chicago.
  by ExCon90
 
Seems like nobody has done any research, so I feel free to offer my opinion. What gave impetus to the introduction of reclining seats (and air conditioning) was loss of passengers to autos and buses in the late 1930's as highways got better. I don't think many Pullman passengers willingly traded even an upper berth for a reclining seat in a coach -- Pullmans were the natural environment of businessmen (I think it's perfectly all right not to say business travelers when speaking of the 1930's, because they were men in that era) and the comfortably well off. Passengers in the reclining seats represented a demographic which had never before been catered to by the railroads and were voting with their backsides rather than their feet, deserting the railroads.