Ligonier Valley Rail Road Doodlebugs

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Ligonier Valley Rail Road Doodlebugs

The LVRR owned four second-hand rail-motor cars, commonly referred to as doodlebugs. The first doodlebug, M-10, was a Model 55 manufactured by the J.G.Brill Company. Originally owned by the Punxsutawney Coal Company, it was used to ferry miners. It was a gas-mechanical car purchased in 1928 by the LVRR. Late in its career, the M10 was utilized solely as trailer. The Liggie's second doodlebug, M-21, was also a Brill Model 55, purchased in 1937 from the St. Louis Southwestern Railroad. The M-21 eventually became the workhorse of the LVRR.

In the mid-1940's, the LVRR purchased two gas-electric rail motor cars from the Boston and Maine Railroad. These two cars, the product of Electro-Motive Company and St. Louis Car Company, carried numbers 1150 and 1152. The doodlebugs were designed to carry approximately 45 passengers and baggage.

The doodlebugs found favor on many railroads, large and small, for use on lightly patronized lines. They were more economical to operate than a conventional passenger train pulled by a steam engine. The Ligonier Valley used the doodlebugs to protect the passenger schedule from the time the M10 was purchased. Their use by the LVRR allowed passenger service to be maintained until the complete cessation of rail service on August 31, 1952.

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