Railroad History

A historic look at America’s grandest railroad space

By Matt Van Hattem
Published: December 21, 2012
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Author and Historian John Hankey tells you the incredible story of 'Transcontinental Transformation' in the August 2012 issue of Trains magazine. Check out more construction photos of the Class I railroad that turned 150 years old in 2012
Published: June 22, 2012
Published: July 22, 2011
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How railroads changed the American Civil War
By John P. Hankey
Published: January 21, 2011
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How a volunteer group brought back a big Berkshire
Published: November 19, 2010
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Is Trains author Ted Benson prophetic?  Download a free PDF of a February 1977 story
Published: September 24, 2010
Virginia & Truckee
See what this Nevada short line looked like in historic photos from the Trains magazine archive
Published: July 1, 2010
Four cool diesels you can see in museums today
By David Lustig
Published: May 25, 2010
Union Pacific depot, North Platte, Neb.
Since 1866, the fortunes of Union Pacific and this small Nebraska city have been inextricably intertwined
By Matt Van Hattem
Published: May 21, 2010
Leviathan
What's being done to preserve railroads and their landmarks, and what can you do?
By John Gruber
Published: May 17, 2010
Helmstetter's Curve
A farmer's kindness toward rail photographers was returned after tragedy threatened his livelihood and nearly destroyed a famous railroad landmark
By Clay Moritz, Carl Franz
Published: February 5, 2010
State by state, here's what's left
Published: February 1, 2010
Connellsville, Pa., roundhouse
No cutting corners on these fascinating structures from across the nation
Published: January 27, 2010
By Rachel Boehm
Published: January 22, 2010
Published: November 23, 2009
Leah "Rosie" Rosenfeld
Rosie (not the Riveter) creates a precedent for working women everywhere by challenging the Southern Pacific Railroad, Transportation Communications International Union, and the state of California
By Shirley Burman
Published: November 16, 2009
Chicago Transit Authority
It takes dedication and flexibility to amass three decades of photos for the annual Christmas card
By David C. Warner
Published: October 23, 2009
Baltimore railroad tunnels
A brief look at the eras in American railroad electrification
By Scott Lothes
Published: September 25, 2009
See the spectacular ads from the early to mid-20th century that drew people to train travel
By John Gruber
Published: August 17, 2009
See historic photos and shots of the Henry E. Huntington's last run
Published: June 23, 2009
Erie Railroad WC tower
By the end of the year, this 19th century interlocking tower in northern New Jersey will reopen as a museum
By Curt Springstead
Published: May 22, 2009
Iconic railroad photographer Ted Benson immortalizes memories of the McCloud River Railroad in black and white.
Published: April 24, 2009
Galveston Railroad Museum
Published: March 20, 2009
Flying Scotsman
You've read our story about railway preservation in England in May 2009 Trains, now see who got the money to make it happen
Published: March 20, 2009
Published: May 23, 2008
Zephyr and M10000
Meet the men who designed the streamlined passenger trains of the 1930's
By John Kelly
Published: July 6, 2006
And other turbine steam locomotives
Published: June 5, 2006
The "Big Three" of steam
By Kevin P. Keefe
Published: June 5, 2006
Historical profiles of North American passenger-car builders
By George H. Drury
Published: June 5, 2006
Part railroad, part trolley, part rapid transit
By Robert S. McGonigal
Published: June 5, 2006
Moving and sorting mail
By Robert S. McGonigal
Published: June 5, 2006
Yesterday's Federal Express
By George H. Drury
Published: June 5, 2006
CSX Transportation
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Canadian Pacific Railway
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Norfolk Southern Railway
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Kansas City Southern Railway
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Untangling the family tree
Published: June 2, 2006
Union Pacific Railroad
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Canadian National
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
BNSF Railway
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Pan Am Railways
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
Conrail (Consolidated Rail Corporation)
A genealogy of the well-known railroads that make up today's system
Published: June 2, 2006
How 4 feet, 8-1/2 inches became the standard
By George W. Hilton
Published: May 1, 2006
A common rulebook for the diverse Northeast
By Martin Graetz
Published: May 1, 2006
Conrail bay window caboose
Once a fixture at the end of freight trains, the caboose played a critical role in railroad operations, until technology caught up
By John Kelly
Published: May 1, 2006
The Denver and Rio Grande movie
The good, the bad and the ugly in railroad movies
Published: May 1, 2006
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