The 1940s
1Had steam met its match? EMD 103 pauses on NP at Missoula, Mont., during fateful tour. R.V. Nixon
2New vistas from Silver Dome. CB&Q
3Quixotic Pennsy T-1 wakes up Van Wert, Ohio. Richard E. Dill
4Fresh from Pullman-Standard, green-and-orange Empire Builder skirts Puget Sound. GN
5With its shiny blue E7 and domes, G.M.'s Train of Tomorrow (at Louisville) pleased crowds. R.L. Kirkpatrick
6Domes were the drawing card for the three-road, scheduled-for-scenery California Zephyr. Richard Steinheimer
7Strange sight at the Monon's 5th street depot in Lafayette, Ind., was Budd's RDC-1 demonstrator 2960. M.D. McCarter



1Electro-Motive Corporation 103, FT demonstrator, concludes 11-month, 83,764-mile test over 20 railroads in 35 states from Portland, Me., to Bakersfield, Calif., from Seattle to Atlanta.

October 7

New York Central receives first dual-service 4-8-2 Mohawk, No. 3000.

October 20

Al Kalmbach publishes first issue of Trains, with Linn H. Westcott and Willard V. Anderson as co-editors.


Three new alternate-day streamliners debut in Chicago-Florida service: City of Miami, South Wind, and Dixie Flagler.

December 31

Chicago & Eastern Illinois emerges from receivership into private management.


January 21

Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee receives first of two Electroliners.

February 4

Santa Fe 100, first revenue FT diesel, placed in service.

September 1

Last run of Denver & Rio Grande Western narrow-gauge to Santa Fe, N. Mex.

September 4

First Union Pacific 4-8-8-4 Big Boy accepted from Alco.

December 16

UP City of Salina, first Streamliner (M-10,000 from 1934), removed from service.



Government takes over Toledo, Peoria & Western because of labor strife.

April 22

First Pennsylvania T1 4-4-4-4, 6110, built by Baldwin.

May 1

Illinois Central introduces all-new Panama Limited, last prewar lightweight train.

July 6

Daniel Willard, 81, president of Baltimore & Ohio for 31 years, dies.


Kalmbach Publishing Co. moves from 1568 W. Pierce St. to 1027 N. 7th St., Milwaukee.


July 14

Canadian National's Montreal Central Terminal opens.

September 6

Burned-off journal derails PRR Congressional at Frankford Junction, Pa., killing 79.

September 20

Fire in Tunnel 20 closes Denver & Salt Lake main on Colorado's Front Range for 72 days, forcing D& SL and tenant D& RGW to detour via Tennessee Pass.


Monson Railroad, last Maine 2-foot-gauge common carrier, quits.

December 16

Atlantic Coast Line Tamiami Champions derail and collide near Buie, N.C., killing 72.



Rio Grande's Leadville-Ibex (Colo.) branch, highest standard-gauge line in U.S. at 11,512 feet, abandoned; title passes to nearby Colorado & Southern at 11,465 feet.


Bangor & Aroostook orders a 4-8-2 and a 2-8-0 (last new Class 1 Consolidation) from Alco.

May 24

Centennial of the railroad telegraph.


NYC orders 300 passenger cars from three builders, ending drought caused by WWII shortages.


Alco delivers 1000th diesel, Wabash S2 317.


Fairbanks-Morse turns out its first diesel-electric, Milwaukee Road 1000 h.p. switcher 1802.


50th anniversary of St. Louis Union Station opening.


Central of New Jersey introduces Statue of Liberty emblem, replacing old circular logo.

October 17

Chicago, Burlington & Quincy operates 82-car mail and express train, Chicago to Council Bluffs Transfer.

December 23

Washington Union Station closes its doors for several hours account overcapacity crush of sales and passengers.


January 1

Norfolk & Western J-class 4-8-4, on loan to PRR's Fort Wayne Division for testing, pulls Broadway Limited eastbound from Chicago.


NYC places first Niagara 4-8-4 in service.

March 8

Santa Fe opens new Colorado River bridge at Topock, Ariz.


New York, Susquehanna & Western dieselizes, first Class 1 to do so (Texas Mexican had dieselized in 1939 but used steam occasionally later).


Joint Milwaukee Road-Rock Island Harry S Truman Missouri River bridge at Kansas City completed.

July 23

2 First revenue trip of Burlington Silver Dome, first dome coach, on Twin Cities Zephyr.


Robert R. Young proposes to consolidate Chesapeake & Ohio, Pere Marquette, Nickel Plate, and Wheeling & Lake Erie (derailed by NKP shareholders a month later).

September 8

Wartime restrictions on railroad enthusiast photography lifted.


Oregon Electric announces intent to retire electrification, dieselize.


Rio Grande opens new Tennessee Pass (Colo.) tunnel and Northern Pacific a new Bozeman Pass (Mont ) tunnel.


January 1

Atlanta, Birmingham & Coast merged into Atlantic Coast Line.

January 7

B&O shifts Detroit passenger trains from Fort Street Union Depot to Michigan Central Station.


Canadian Pacific reinstates beaver in new company emblem.

March 15

Wartime restriction on sleeping-car runs of under 450 miles lifted.

April 13

Centennial of Pennsylvania Railroad's charter.

April 25

Rear-end collision of CB& Q Exposition Flyer and Advance Flyer at Naperville, Ill., kills 45.


John W. Barriger III named president of Chicago, Indianapolis & Louisville (Monon Route).

August 24

Boston & Maine discontinues Hoosac Tunnel electrification in favor of diesels.

August 27

3 Last PRR T1, 5549, enters service.

September 6

Missouri & North Arkansas struck, leading to dismemberment of 335-mile line.

September 22

Debut of Alco's 75,000th locomotive, Santa Fe "PA" A-B-A set No. 51.


February 23

4 Great Northern introduces all-new Empire Builder, first postwar streamlined train.

March 8

Florida East Coast opens 25-mile Fort Pierce-Lake Okeechobee cutoff.

April 1

Last run of 190-mile Pittsburg, Shawmut & Northern.

April 7

Edaville Railroad opens in Massachusetts, reincarnating three Maine 2-footers for tourists.

May 31

Gulf, Mobile & Ohio acquires Alton Railroad.


TP& W resumes service after 19-month strike.

June 3

5 General Motors' Train of Tomorrow begins nationwide tour from Chicago.

June 6

Pere Marquette merged into C&O.

July 31

Monon Route marks centennial.

August 15

Rock Island completes $15 million, five-site Iowa relocation project.

September 17

Freedom Train begins nationwide tour behind Alco PA Spirit of 1776.

October 1

Lima Locomotive Works merges with General Machinery of Hamilton, Ohio, to create Lima-Hamilton Corporation.

October 15

Tonopah & Goldfield abandoned.


Trains enlarges from 6¾ x 10¼-inch to 8¼ x 11¼-inch format.


C&O's new Baldwin steam-turbine No. 500 begins tour.


January 1

Rock Island emerges from long and acrimonious reorganization.


Virginian receives largest electric locomotives, two-unit GE motor-generator sets.

January 31

Norfolk Southern goes freight-only.

February 29

Santa Fe begins daily Super Chief.

June 11

Al Kalmbach hires David P. Morgan.

July 20

Chicago Railroad Fair opens.


Willard V. Anderson named Trains editor; A. C. Kalmbach remains publisher.


Centennial of Erie's Starrucca Viaduct.

September 15

NYC introduces all-new 20th Century Limited.


Alco-GE gas-turbine electric finished.


B&O pays first dividend since 1931.


January 2

C& EI marks centennial of predecessor's charter.


Midland Terminal, last remnant of Colorado Midland, ceases operation.

February 12

Burlington Route marks centennial of first predecessor's charter.

March 20

6 California Zephyr inaugurated over Burlington, Rio Grande, and Western Pacific.


Airline passenger-miles exceed Pullman passenger-miles for first time.


Lima outshops last steam locomotive, Nickel Plate S-3 2-8-4 No. 779.

July 2

Atlantic & Danville resumes independent operation.


Baldwin outshops last domestic steam locomotive, C& O H6 2-6-6-2 1309.


7 Budd introduces the RDC1.


EMD introduces the GP7.

October 7

GM&O becomes first "major railroad" (2901 miles) to dieselize.

December 1

Wheeling & Lake Erie leased by Nickel Plate Road.

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