Gulf Coast Rebel 10442
Gulf, Mobile & Ohio Railroad
Alco/General Electric DL-109/110 AB Diesel Locomotive
7-Car Set

No. 10442 Alco/General Electric DL-109/110 AB Diesel Locomotive, heading up the "Gulf Coast Rebel" Streamlined Passenger Train

 Gulf, Mobile & Ohio Railroad

In 1935, little 734-mile Gulf, Mobile & Northern Railroad introduced the South's first streamliner, the "Rebel," connecting Jackson, Tennessee, with Mobile, Alabama, Jackson, Mississippi, and New Orleans. Two identical trainsets were delivered in the summer of 1935, built by American Car and Foundry and styled by noted industrial designer Otto Kuhler. The "Rebels" were constructed of high-strength Cor-Ten steel, lightweight and smooth sided. Alco supplied the 600 horsepower diesel-electric power plants for the shovel-nosed 3-car trainsets in red and silver, with sleeping accommodations for the overnight trips between Jackson, Tennessee, and New Orleans. These were the first non-articulated diesel-electric streamliners, meaning the cars could be coupled separately to lengthen the train if necessary, and soon a fourth car was added to the consists because of their immediate popularity (see No. 10725).

Following the merger of Gulf, Mobile & Northern with the Mobile & Ohio Railroad in 1940, creating the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio Railroad, "Rebel" service was extended to St. Louis.

Concurrent with the merger was the introduction of a big brother streamlined train (two trainsets) for the "Little Rebel," the "Gulf Coast Rebel" (known as the "Big Rebel"), operating between St. Louis and Mobile. The new air-conditioned red and silver streamliners were operated daily on an overnight schedule via Cairo, Illinois, Jackson, Tennessee, and Meridian, Mississippi, a 648-mile run. Power for the "Gulf Coast Rebels" was supplied by new Alco/GE-built chisel- nosed DL-109 diesel locomotives, introduced to American railroads for freight and passenger service in 1941 and designed by Kuhler. Actually, the "Big Rebel" needed no more than the 2000 horsepower "A" unit (DL-109) for power; the "B" unit(DL-110) as included with this model was never used on these trains. Seventy-four (74) "A" units were built by Alco-GE 1941-45, but only 4 "B" units, purchased by nine American railroads.

The Gulf, Mobile & Ohio merged with the Alton Railroad (see No. 10413) in 1947, doubling the railroad's size and extending its reach to Chicago and Kansas City from St. Louis. At this time the railroad ordered new lightweight streamlined cars from American Car & Foundry, now painted in Alton's handsome red-and-maroon livery, replacing Gulf, Mobile & Ohio's red-and-silver decorative scheme.

The"Rebel" fleet faced stiff competition from Illinois Central's "City of New Orleans" (see No. 10285) and "Panama Limited" (see No. 10329), as well as Louisville & Nashville's "Humming Bird" (see No. 10331). The "Little Rebels" were discontinued in 1954, and in 1958 the "Gulf Coast Rebels" also lost the battle, ending all passenger service on the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio south of St. Louis.

No. 10442 represents an accurate scale model of Gulf, Mobile & Ohio's Alco/GE DL-109 diesel locomotive, heading up the streamlined 7-car "Gulf Coast Rebel" (Nos. 10444 and 10445) as it would have been seen on its run between St. Louis and Mobile 1941-1947. No. 10443 DL-110 "B" unit can be shown with the train but would be unprototypical. The train is in "0"gauge by MTH.

© 2015 The Lawrence Scripps Wilkinson Foundation

This train has been adopted.

The Lawrence Scripps Wilkinson Foundation
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