I really don't have a lot of "backstory" to go with the most recent addition to my Rails & Sails custom cards lineup.
I found a great piece of art to build the card around, showing the train at the Mobile, Ala., terminal in its original chinese-red and aluminum paint scheme.
A later version of a streamliner of the GM&O, presumaby the Rebel, is featured in a couple of scenes from one of my favorite movies.
I'll let this excerpt from Wikipedia explain . . .
A GM&O EMD E7 and passenger cars were featured in the 1967 film In the Heat of the Night. Although the film's opening and ending shots of the GM&O are implied to be in a fictionalized version of Sparta, Mississippi, GM&O had ceased all passenger service south of St. Louis, Missouri eight years before filming was done in 1966. The actual filming location was Sparta, Illinois. The location where the GM&O locomotives and cars were filmed was in Sparta Illinois also. The train was leased from GM&O with a train crew to comply with union and operating rules of the road. The train came from Metro St. Louis, Missouri and traveled south along a GM&O right of way towards Sparta Illinois. At the time of filming, GM&O had not merged yet with the Illinois Central Railroad. The opening scene of the film shows the train crossing a main street in Sparta at night with the bright headlamp on the lead engine approaching town from an overhead shot. This was done using a scaffold across the tracks. This scene shows Virgil detraining and entering the depot station. The train was then driven south to an available turntable and parked for the night turning the engines around for the return trip to Sparta to shoot the final scene which was shot the following day and was among the final scenes of the film showing Virgil boarding the train and saying goodbye to Gillespie. As the train leaves Sparta, a close up shot of Virgil riding in a passenger car was taken by helicopter as the train travels the opposite direction with the scene expanding the view showing it meandering through the countryside as it leaves Sparta.
The train in the movie has the maroon-and-red color scheme that the GM&O adopted after its merger with the Alton Railroad in 1947.
I really do enjoy the research necessary to create a credible modern Rails & Salis card, but this may be the last non-sports card I tackle for a while. Baseball season is right around the corner and my card-making time is likely to lean more in that direction in the coming months.