Thursday, May 22, 2008

Chicago Rail Fair 1948 Slides Set Number 4

More images from the Chicago Rail Fair. The first is a nice image of the Old Faithful Geyser.

Here is the land of the southwest, the Santa Fe Railroad Exhibit. I love the large Kachina statues. Once again the land marker looks familiar.

Here is an image of one of the employees attired to the theme of the display. In this case, she is working at the New Orleans section of the fair.

There were also themed restaurants located at the fair. This is from the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad. Eating in a railroad car is a fun way of dining. (For those in LA, I recommend a visit to Carney's on Sunset Boulevard.)

Of course the reason for the fair was railroads and the rolling stock. Here are some pictures of the engines and the equipment on display at the fairground. I dedicate this section to Viewliner and to my nephew who loves trains. The first image is of the Wabash Rogers engine which may have been the inspiration for the song "The Wabash Cannonball."

Here is a train that would figure into Disney Studio history in 7 short years, the original General. Walt used his new star Fess Parker in a classic Civil War railroad story The Great Locomotive Chase featuring this train.

The next is one of the streamline steam engines for the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. I believe at this time this was part of the Cincinattan train.

A nice large Pennsylvania Central railroad electric motive engine. This engine was completed in 1942.

Finally a nice shot of a New York Central streamline passenger car. I love the hand lettered sign.

Tomorrow- souvenir Friday with a trivia contest.


The Viewliner Limited said...

Absolutely fantastic pictures. Just a little correction (I hope you don't mind). Pic#8 of the Pennsylvania Loco. This is a GG1 Electric from the Pennsylvania RR not the Penn Central. The pic of the New York Central observation car is just beautiful. The Santa Fe RR Indian Village is incredible. This will lay the ground work for years of Indian motive advertising for the AT&SF for years to come. Thanks Matterhorn. All appreciate beyond words.

The Viewliner Limited said...

...and in addition, I thank you very much for the dedication of part of this post to the Viewliner Ltd. That is very cool. :-) You have made my day, Richard.

Major Pepperidge said...

For years my general impression of this Rail Fair is that it was pretty much just a bunch of different trains that people got to see up close and personal. How wrong I was! It was like a World's Fair, practically! Amazing.

Chris Jepsen said...

I agree with the Major. This sheds a lot of light on Walt's thinking going into the development of Disneyland.

It seems like that Fess Parker movie probably didn't give Buster Keaton's "The General" a real run for its money. But it does sound (roughly) like the same plot. If so, that would mean that Disney got the REAL General to portray itself in the movie, which is pretty cool.

Major Pepperidge said...

Oh, and check out the streamlined locomotive, what a thing of beauty. Man, those things were huge too!

Well, I keep saying it, but thanks so much for sharing these incredible slides!

Matterhorn1959 said...

Viewliner- thanks for the correction. I know a little about trains but sometimes a little is not enough!

Thanks for the comments Chris and Major!

The Blue Parrot said...

The Chessie Club is rather interesting as well. The C&O had grand plans for a streamlined train named the Chessie that fell through, victims of the decline in passenger rail travel. Cars ordered for it from various manufacturers ended up on railroads around the country instead - most notably some on the Denver & Rio Grande.

I've always thought that a restaurant concept of a railroad diner and lounge (just like the two cars here) would make for a fine time. Profitable is another question...

CheriBibi said...

It's so impressive to see in color the event that may have decided Disney to finaly go into the amusement park business. We seem to be witnessing the SPARK ! Thank you so much !