This reissue of the 1999 MBI publication tells the fascinating story of one of America’s greatest railroads. Author Brian Solomon has tracked down 150 vintage black-and-white and color photographs, timetables, and postcards not included in the previous volume to take readers on a rail journey from the 1800s to today in the form of the lines that ply former New York Central trackage.
And that journey is an evocative one. For decades the New York Central reigned as one of America’s most important railroads. Growing from the consolidation of a fledgling group of small railroad companies that formed a through route between Albany and Buffalo in Upstate New York, the New York Central became a powerhouse transportation company with 10,000-plus route miles.
Through fabulous imagery, four specially commissioned maps, and his authoritative text, Solomon shows why the Central was a classic in every sense, growing under the firm direction of rail baron Cornelius “Commodore” Vanderbilt. From 1902 to 1967, the New York Central operated the most famous passenger train in the world: the esteemed 20th Century Limited. Additionally, Central’s mechanical department developed the legendary 4-6-4 Hudson-type steam locomotive. Although the New York Central ceased to exist in 1968, its legacy survives on well-trafficked, high-speed main lines currently used by CSX, Norfolk Southern, and Amtrak—and in this new volume.