Car service and car accounting issues date back to the very beginning of rail interchange. In 1927, in testimony before the Interstate Commerce Commission, Arthur Hale describes the rules for car-hire settlements beginning in the 1860’s. The first recorded reference (we know of) to the predecessor of this organization is Mr. Hale’s mention of an 1878 meeting of the Car Accountants Association. Of course, the real reason for the introduction of per diem car-hire was to facilitate the proper flow of equipment, which explains the association’s twin constituencies – car accountants and car service officers. Mr. Hale’s testimony describes the work of the association known as The General Time Convention and its Committee on Car Mileage. These were the direct predecessors to The American Railway Association and its Committee on Car Service. We now know these entities as the AAR and its Equipment Assets Management Working Committee.