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Home > Books

20th Century Limited

Part Number 2261
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20th Century Limited
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THE history of the 'World's Greatest Train' by Trains magazine's passenger train authority (A Book)

(rear cover above)

In the history of American railroading, no train stands taller than the 20th Century Limited, New York Central’s flagship that plied the “Water Level Route” New York to Chicago from 1902 until 1967.  In this book Trains magazine author Karl Zimmermann authoritatively documents this extraordinary train, from it’s illustrious beginning, in the days of opulent wooden cars, through its demise in the era of passenger-train cutbacks.  Along the way, Karl recounts the Century’s operation in multiple sections (as many as seven in one direction during the 1920s and 30s), as well as during the art deco streamline era with industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss’ elegant 1938 train.

The Century was a train of magnates and movie stars, with a red carpet rolled out for departure from Chicago and New York.  With the finest of food and a full array of amenities: barber, secretary, shower, and maid --- the Century set standards against which other passenger trains were measured.

This book contains more then 200 b&w and color photos, as well as dinnerware, menus, advertisements, route maps, and interior views.  Together with Karl’s excellent captions and text, you get a dramatic account of the "most famous train in the world". 

156 pages, hardbound (8˝ x 11”) w/ dust jacket; by Andover Junction Press, 2002.  This book’s warehouse inventories are wearing thin.  It will probably NOT be re-printed. 

 Contents: Foreword, pp. 9-14; Ch. 1: Riding the Greatest Train Ever Made, pp. 15-28; Ch. 2: The Early Years, pp. 29-40; Ch. 3: Abundant Centuries: The Heavyweight Years, pp. 41-66; Ch. 4: Henry Dreyfuss' Elegant Streamliner, pp. 67-96; Ch. 5: The Final Flowering, pp. 97-126; Ch. 6: The Great Steel Fleet, pp. 127-142; Ch. 7: Other Fleets: The Competition, pp. 143-150; Epilogue, pp. 151-155, Index, pg. 156. 

The publisher's price for this book is $34.95.  At $31.50, NYCSHS members, who are signed into their ‘Collinwood’ accounts, get almost 10% off the publisher’s price.  [With fewer than 70 left, the publisher has the dealer price ‘jacked up’].  Ohio residents will be charged sales tax.

Feature 13

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