Pullman Accommodations: 1934

This booklet describes the types of sleeping-car spaces available to passengers in the heavyweight era. Just six types are described: the low-cost upper; the slightly more comfortable lower; the section, in which someone bought both the upper and lower for the price of a lower plus half to three-quarters of the upper; the rare single bedroom, a private room with a sofa that converted to a bed with a sink and toilet and that cost as much as an upper and lower combined; the compartment, which had the same beds as a section in a private room with a small closet and a sink, and that cost as much as two lowers and an upper; and finally the drawing room, a private room with a private bath, an upper and lower, and a sofa that converted to a third bed, and that cost 3-1/2 times the price of a lower.

Click image to download a 10.2-MB PDF of this 24-page booklet.

The writer of this booklet was fond of repeating the dimensions of every accommodation. The horsehair mattresses were all 4-1/2-inches thick, and people who got a section were allowed to have two mattresses on top of one another for nine inches of comfort. Most mattresses were 6-feet, 2-inches long and 35 inches wide, except for the third bed in the drawing room which was only 25 inches wide. The beds also all came with two pillows stuffed with 2-1/2 pounds of “downy goose-feathers.”

The booklet also described parlor cars, lounge cars, Pullman diners, and the men’s and women’s dressing rooms that were available to passengers in the open sections. The 1934 date suggests the booklet might have been available at the Century of Progress expo, but since it makes no attempt to play on the word “progress,” it was probably used mainly in other venues.

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