Railroad Folklore

There was about a century of history and tradition when this book was published in 1953. The inside of the cover is all logos of the lines, big and small. The acknowledgments page is a who’s who of mid 20th century railroading. But the stories, the stories are of conductors and brakemen, hobos and circus trains, epic disasters and tales of survival.

I bought it for a dollar in a pile of used books. I was looking for books to send to Afghanistan, but this one spoke to me. Great stories, stretching back to the building of the roads. I was entertained and I learned a lot about a part of American history. I don’t think they could have imagined that it would end as soon as it did. They lived in a time when it was still amazing to make a four day transcontinental crossing.

Nothing was more up-to-date when it was built, or is more obsolete today, than the railroad station.
–Ada Louise Huxtable


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