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Hooterville Cannonball

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Title: Hooterville Cannonball  
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Subject: Fictional trains, Hooterville, Cannonball, Railtown 1897 State Historic Park, List of fictional vehicles
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Hooterville Cannonball

Hooterville Cannonball
Petticoat Junction
Green Acres
The Beverly Hillbillies
Occupation Train

The Hooterville Cannonball is a fictional railroad train featured in Petticoat Junction, an American situation comedy that originally aired on CBS from 1963 to 1970, and was produced by Filmways, Inc. The show was created by the same producers of Green Acres and The Beverly Hillbillies, and it shares some characters and its locale, the fictional town of Hooterville, with Green Acres. The shows feature rural characters in humorous and sometimes absurd situations.


  • Petticoat Junction 1
  • Production 2
  • Popular culture 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Petticoat Junction

The most unusual "character" in the Petticoat Junction cast is the Hooterville Cannonball, an abbreviated train with a spur between Hooterville and Pixley that is no longer connected to the railway's main line after the collapse of a bridge trestle that was never repaired. Its not uncommon the Cannonball to make an unscheduled stop in order to go fishing or pick fruit for Kate Bradley's menu at the Shady Rest Hotel. Occasionally, Betty Jo Bradley can be found with her hand on the Cannonball's throttle, as driving the train home from trips into town is one of her favorite pastimes.

J. Homer Bedloe, played by actor Charles Lane, is vice president of the C.&F.W. Railroad, the owner of the Cannonball. Bedloe is a mean-spirited executive, and he periodically visits the Shady Rest Hotel and attempts to end the train service of the Hooterville Cannonball (and never succeeds).

In Episode 31 of Season 1, "Charley Abandons The Cannonball," engineer Charley Pratt picks up his guitar and sings an ode to the train. The lyrics are sung roughly to the tune of "Wabash Cannonball".


There were actually two Hooterville Cannonball trains used for filming. The working model was the Unforgiven.

A full-scale prop locomotive was used for studio sound stage scenes. It was built in 1950 by 20th Century Fox for a movie called A Ticket to Tomahawk, starring Dan Dailey, Walter Brennan, Rory Calhoun and Marilyn Monroe. It was a replica of a locomotive engine car called the Emma Sweeny, and it was pulled by a team of mules for its scenes in the film. The original 1950 cost of the elaborate studio mock-up was $40,000. Later in the 1950s, Fox sold the wooden/metal/fiberglass locomotive to Harvey Dick, who used it for the décor of the Barbary Coast Lounge in the lobby of his Hoyt Hotel, an 1890s style gas-light hotel in Portland, Oregon. [2] Harvey Dick loaned the replica to the producers of Petticoat Junction in exchange for the prominent screen credit seen at the end of each episode: "Train furnished by Barbary Coast, Hoyt Hotel, Portland, Oregon." It was also used in the show The Wild Wild West for scenes of the engine and tender.

In the 1970s, the locomotive replica was purchased by Sacramento restauranteur/collector Sam Gordon. Gordon displayed it in the parking lot of his Sam's Stage Coach Inn (Sam's Town) along Hwy 50 in Cameron Park, California, which is about 30 miles east of Sacramento. The replica fell into disrepair. In 1979, it was purchased by John Queirolo and Rick Stevenson, who later gave it to the Amador County Museum in Jackson, California, where it was restored and displayed. In August 2011, the the Amador County museum sold the locomotive replica to the Durango Railroad Historical Society in Durango, Colorado, which planned to restore it to its original state as the Emma Sweeny. [3]

Popular culture

In 1966 Tyco Toys manufactured a tie-in electric train set.


  1. ^ "Railtown 1897 in Jamestown Resumes Steam Train Rides Behind Historic Sierra No. 3 Beginning on Saturday, April 4" Sierra Sun Times March 11, 2015 retrieved October 25, 2015
  2. ^ LaMarche, Bill "Petticoat Junction" star Linda Kaye Henning to Attend Oregon Zoo's Train Party" May 30, 2009 retrieved October 8, 2015
  3. ^ Durango Railroad Historical Society. "Emma Sweeny". Retrieved December 24, 2012. 

External links

  • Hooterville Cannonball website (Web Archive)
  • Railtown 1897 State Historical Park, Jamestown, California
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