C&O/F.F.V, Orange with Maroon Embroidery Polo
C&OHS has just released a new polo style shirt commemorating the C&O's longest-operated name train, the Fast Flying Virginian (known as the FFV). It was the railway's first true through name train, operating between Cincinnati and Washington through Kentucky, West Virginia, and Virginia. The entire train was then carried to and from to New York on the Pennsylvania Railroad. This helped set the pattern that would persist until the end of C&O: carrying passengers between New York and the mountain resorts.
Inaugurated on May 11, 1889 amid huge publicity ballyhoo, the train had the latest passenger car technology with steam heat, electric lights and fans, and luxurious appointments throughout. The vestibule had just been introduced two years before and very few trains in America had them. But C&O added vestibules to the other state-of-the-art design of its trains.
The FFV was painted a distinctive deep orange (called cadmium yellow), with maroon letter board and gold leaf lettering. Even the trucks were pinstriped in gold. From that date until the FFV name disappeared from the timetables on May 12, 1968, the train was famous for its mineral springs resort service. - It was the flagship of C&O until 1930 when The Sportsman took that title, only to be displaced itself in 1932 by The George Washington.
The new high-quality FFV polo shirt is designed to replicate the train's flashy orange color. The black lettering uses one of the 1890s-era FFV designs. You see, from the very beginning, the train was best known by its initials. - The sleeves have the imprint of a C&O "herald" of the same era.
This design is something new in our clothing line, in that it harkens back to the most ancient of C&O traditions, the "once and future" train of trains, The FFV! And . . . like the train, it makes a stunning impression.