Semaphores at Polly—Tracking the Light Daily Post.

A Nearly Literal Interpretation of the Southern Pacific Logo.

Semaphores at Polly, New Mexico; exposed on Kodachrome 25 using a Nikormat FT3 fitted with a 28mm Nikkor lens. Exposure calculated manually using a handheld Sekonic Studio Deluxe photocell.
Semaphores at Polly, New Mexico; exposed on Kodachrome 25 using a Nikormat FT3 fitted with a 28mm Nikkor lens. Exposure calculated manually using a handheld Sekonic Studio Deluxe photocell.

In January 1994, I spent several days photographing along Southern Pacific’s Tucumcari Line in central New Mexico.

One morning I made this image of the sun on the horizon with classic Union Switch & Signal Style B lower quadrant semaphores at Polly.

For me it is nearly the literal translation of SP’s safety logo with semaphores and the sun. The only difference is SP’s sun was setting (thus the ‘Sunset Route’) while mine is rising.

I’ve published variations of this image many places, including my original signals book titled Railroad Signaling. Presently, I’m working on its sequel, classic signaling which will focus on steam-era hardware.

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