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Prototype Description: The 50-ton outside braced boxcar was designed by the United States Railway Administration during World War I. These cars quickly became a common sight on railroads from coast to coast.
Road Name History:
The Clinchfield was the last Class I railroad built in the U.S. east of the Rocky Mountains. The 266-mile railroad provided access to numerous scenic wonders of the Appalachian region and is probably best known for the state-of-the-art railroad engineering techniques applied in its construction, as exemplified by the Clinchfield Loops climbing the Blue Ridge Mountains north of Marion, North Carolina.
The Clinchfield Railroad began operating the line December 1, 1924, and for many years it was leased jointly by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad and Louisville and Nashville Railroad. When the L&N merged with the ACL's successor, the Seaboard Coast Line Railroad, effective January 1, 1983, forming the Seaboard System Railroad, the separate operating company was unnecessary and was merged into the Seaboard. The line is now owned and operated by CSX Transportation as their Blue Ridge Subdivision (Spartanburg to Erwin, Tennessee) and Kingsport Subdivision (Erwin to Elkhorn City).
On October 15, 2015 CSX Transportation announced it was closing the Erwin yard facility, with a loss of 300 jobs. All through traffic trains would cease using the Clinchfield Route. Industries around Kingsport and Johnson City, TN would still be serviced by trains coming North from Spartanburg, SC and Bostic, NC, as would the Alpha Natural Resources coal preparation facility in McClure, VA by trains coming south from Shelbiana, Ky. Norfolk Southern would still use the line from St. Paul to Frisco, VA via a trackage rights arrangement with the CSX. The line between St. Paul and McClure (19.4 miles) would be idled immediately, effectively ending the use of the Clinchfield Route as a functioning bridge route between Spartanburg and Elkhorn City. It has been reported, however, that there have been instances of equipment running between Shelbiana, Ky and Dante, Va. The last time a train crossed the entire "North End" of the Clinchfield Route (from Elkhorn to Kingsport) was for the 2015 running of the Santa Claus Special, which happened in November 2015. It remains unclear as to the future of this rail line.
In those days, railroad modelers had to assemble and build everything from scratch. Steve Jr. created a "switch kit" which sold so well, that the entire family worked on them in the basement at night, while doing business as usual in the machine shop during the day.
Subsequently, Steve Jr. engineered the stapling of rail to fiber track, along with inventing the first practical rail joiner and pre-assembled turnouts and flexible track. All of these products, and more, helped to popularize model railroading and assisted in the creation of a mass-market hobby. The budding entrepreneur quickly outgrew the limitations of a basement and small garage operation. Realizing they could actually make a living selling track and related products, Steve and his father had the first factory built in Hillside, New Jersey at 413 Florence Avenue in 1947. On September 30, 1949, the Atlas Tool Company was officially incorporated as a New Jersey company.
In 1985, Steve was honored posthumously for his inventions by the Model Railroad Industry Association and was inducted into the Model Railroad Industry Hall of Fame in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, Steve was nominated and entered into the National Model Railroad Association Pioneers of Model Railroading in 1995.
In the early 1990s, the Atlas Tool Company changed its name to Atlas Model Railroad Company, Inc.
Item created by: trainnut3500 on 2016-07-28 06:07:11. Last edited by trainnut3500 on 2016-07-28 09:07:11
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