This is a great afternoon photo for you to lose yourself in. Click on it for a larger version.

Washington, D.C., or vicinity circa 1915-1930. One of three H&E glass negatives labeled "Car exterior. Washington & Old Dominion R.R." Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative.
Washington, D.C., or vicinity circa 1915-1930. One of three H&E glass negatives labeled “Car exterior. Washington & Old Dominion R.R.” Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative.

We found this gem on Shorpy and you can follow the interesting conversation in their comments about this car’s origin.

Tom founded Ghosts of DC on January 4th, 2012 as a blog to uncover the lost and untold history of Washington, D.C. He has lived in the city for over a decade and loves exploring every corner of the District.
  • Andre M. Smith

    Dear Tom:

    The legend for the passenger car disused by The Pennsylvania Railroad is ” One of three H&E glass negatives labeled ‘Car exterior. Washington & Old Dominion R.R.’” Somewhere here there is an error.
    The PRR at no time in its history had a rail relationship with the W&OD. And I don’t recognize that span of track as having been in the Arlington or Alexandria areas; although much from that location may have been reconfigured beyond modern recognition.
    My guess on this puzzle – and it’s only a guess – is that the labeling of the glass negatives was a clerical error. Where are those negatives held?
    Andre M. Smith
    Former trackman and brakeman
    Washington & Old Dominion Railroad

  • Andre M. Smith

    Dear Tom:

    While thinking further about the misunderstanding that attributes passenger car 4928 as a piece of stock owned and rolled by the W&OD, I think some clarification may be made with illustrations of the real types of passenger cars run by it: http://www.oocities.org/pem20165/WashingtonOldDominionHistory.html and http://donsdepot.donrossgroup.net/dr0001/wod41.jpg Although the dating of car 4928 precedes this Brill unit by about twenty or so years, http://www.oocities.org/pem20165/wodph433no52.html, all equipment run by the W&OD that was owned by it was always inscribed with Washington & Old Dominion Railroad.

    The Shorpy Archive has stated about car 4928 “that seems to have come into the possession of the W. & O.D.” http://www.shorpy.com/node/5870 A piece of physical equipment of such large size can never “seem” anything. It either is or it isn’t. With “Pennsylvania” writ large this unit is just that; not W&OD! http://ghostsofdc.org/image/zoom/10937/view.jpg

    For a good photo survey of stock held by the W&OD after 1940 see http://www.oocities.org/pem20165/WashingtonOldDominionRailroadEquipment.html

    The managers of the Historical Marker Database posted a bit of my history with the W&OD at Bluemont Junction in Arlington. See http://www.hmdb.org/marker.asp?marker=24924 then scroll down to “1. Memories of a W&OD Railroad Employee.”