JeffPo's Handlan Slow Order Resume Lamp Page
Last update: 05/12/11
This is a slow order resume speed lamp made by the Handlan Buck company. It stands about 13 inches tall (not including the handle). The single blue (signal green) lens is about 4.5" in diameter. This particular lamp was used on the Union Pacific Railroad as you can see by the small attached "UP RR" tag on the front. This lamp would have been used in conjunction with an amber lens slow order lamp.
There is a rectangular mounting sleeve on the side. This particular lamp has been bronze coated by someone. Given the Handlan company actually made lamps into the late 1980s and possibly early 1990s for the collector market, it can be sometimes difficult to determine if a particular lamp was actually used by the railroad. They certainly didn't make bronze or brass type lamps for the railroad, but in the 1960s and 1970s it was popular to take real railroad lamps and have them plated. Judging by the older style of this lamp, and the fact that it does appear to be steel that was plated, it seems it was an old railroad lamp that was later plated by a hobbyist. They did a rather nice job.
Slow Order Lamps
Slow order lamps were movable track side signals used by railroad working crews. When work crews were scheduled to work on a section of track or bridge, the dispatcher would issue a Train Order for all trains operating on that section of track. The order let the train crew know that they needed to proceed with caution and be prepared to stop as they encountered men and machinery. While the dispatcher knew exactly the starting and stopping points on the section of track that was being worked on, the work crews could be at various points along this section. There could even be multiple crews working along this section of track. The train engineer knew which section of track was being worked on, but he didn't know exactly where he might encounter the work crews along that section. As an added precaution for safety, a single lens yellow lamp such as this one would be placed on a stake driven into the ground, one mile before the current location of the work crew. A single lens green signal would be placed at the end of the last work area. This let train engineer know that he could now safely resume speed because there were no other workers ahead of him. As the work crews moved along the section of track during the day, they would move the signal lamps accordingly.
NOTE: Thanks and credit to Red Beard the Railroad Raider for providing information on how these lamps were used.
Union Pacific Railroad
A Union Pacific "Big Boy". One of the largest steam locomotives ever built.
The Union Pacific Railroad (UP) is the largest
railroad network in the
The Union Pacific currently owns and operates track
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