Where can you see an 1863 steam locomotive, an FT diesel, the world’s largest tank car, a streetcar and the Katy Flyer? Maybe on a poorly planned model railroad layout, but certainly at the Museum of Transportation in suburban St. Louis, a paradise for the rail history buff and railroad modeler, no matter what era or location he or she models. The St. Louis Museum of Transportation houses one of the largest and best collections of transportation vehicles in the world, proclaims John White, curator emeritus of the Smithsonian Institution. In addition to 150 pieces of railroad rolling stock, the museum includes 100 road vehicles, aircraft and even a towboat. The 1863 steam locomotive is the Daniel Nason, the oldest locomotive in the collection and one of the oldest steam locomotives in the U.S. The 4-4-0 was built by the Boston & Providence Railroad and is the last surviving “insider,”…
Category: Up Close
JEFFERSON, TX — A small group of rail enthusiasts with help from local preservationists, merchants and citizens proved in May that sometimes the very difficult can be achieved. The grand opening of the R.D. Moses Texas & Pacific Railway display at the Jefferson Historical Museum not only culminated one man’s dream for his work to live on but enabled a town to embrace its railroad heritage for the first time in decades. Following a short ceremony and ribbon cutting to kick off Jefferson Train Days, Fort Worth modeler R.D. Moses’ layout was debuted in a new T&P-style building, and many who doubted that a project of such magnitude could be accomplished – the museum’s largest since a roof was installed in the 1990s – were smiling. In less than a year and with no seed money, the craftsman-like layout was transformed from Moses’ backyard and showcased in style under the…
PURCHASE THE CURRENT ISSUE TODAY!
JUST $4.95 (includes shipping)!
Building for the Future
Most modern-day short lines were born on tracks that larger railroads operated as branch lines or divisions to reach their customer base. Some serve Class 1 railroads on the very tracks they once owned but were left behind after business dried up. The Northwest Tarrant & Pacific is no exception. The Cowcatcher’s freelanced shelf-style project railroad is a prime example of a small short line that connects with a larger carrier after acquiring track that was abandoned.
Timing key for TrainTopia
The story of the Bob Sanders G-scale layout that has drawn visitors to the Frisco Discovery Center since last summer takes more twists and turns than the high trestles crossing rocky canyons between Texas and Arizona.
The 2,500-square-foot layout, the property of the Museum of the American Railroad, is about two-thirds of a planned exhibit. Already it offers an expansive, multilevel experience in a theatre setting complete with sophisticated lighting and sound. But in the next few months, “TrainTopia – A Railroad Odyssey in Miniature” will begin construction on an equally impressive O-scale layout to occupy the front portion of the room. How all of this got to MAR is a good story President and CEO Bob LaPrelle likes to tell.
Going DCC simplifies model railroad operation and is easier than it looks. Just don’t sweat the jargon. If you can read you can do it…
Streetcar history unfolds at the Milwaukee Transit & Archives Museum in Cudahy, WI…
TEXRail is off to a running start and officials are already talking about expanding the line that got rolling shortly after the first of the year.
THESE STORIES AND MORE, PLUS A FULL CALENDAR OF UPCOMING EVENTS!
BONUS WEB COVERAGE: In CRU Call in the March/April 2019 issue, Publisher Tim Blackwell tells of how adding a little clutter to right of ways adds realism without overdoing it on the Cowcatcher’s project layout, the Northwest Tarrant & Pacific Railroad…
Cowcatcher Tracks NewsletterSign up for our new monthly newsletter! If you subscribe to the print edition, you will receive Cowcatcher Tracks automatically. If you're not a print edition subscriber, sign up by clicking the logo above or clicking here!
The 51st Amherst Railway Society Railroad Hobby Show in January packed more than 18,000 in the “Big E” in Springfield, MA, and new HO- and N-scale locomotives grabbed plenty of attention.
PIKO SmartControl light DCC System
Model railroaders seeking an affordable, easy-to-use DCC system for smaller layouts should consider the PIKO SmartControl light Basic Set. The set is designed for use with HO, N and TT layouts and has advanced features not seen in other entry-level DCC systems.
Don’t Miss an Issue
Article & Photo Submissions
We encourage readers to submit articles and photos. For details, visit our guide here .
Railroad in Focus