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Power Clash: PRR vs B&O Motive Power and Passenger Traffic Competition 1827-1962
David Messer, Frank Wrabel
St. Louis Mercantile Library
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Date Listed:
2016-04-13 00:00:00
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Untitled Document

Power Clash

PRR vs B&O Motive Power and Passenger Traffic Competition 1827-1962

By David Messer, Frank Wrabel.

Color laminated hardcover, 8.5x11", 378 coated pages, color and b/w archival photos, drawings and plans, foldout schematics, equipment pictures, bibliography. 2015.

A story of rivalry, technology and terrain.

"Few railroads had a rivalry as long and storied as the Pennsylvania Railroad and Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. Each was born from the need for a major seaport to reach the wealth of the interior. Each was faced with the formidable problem of crossing the Allegheny Mountains. Because of this challenge and the presence of mutual competitor with a near water-level-route to the interior (the New York Central), the two railroads would become testing grounds for new locomotive technology well into the 20th century.

"David Messer chronicles the come competition and development projects that took place between the Pennsylvania Railroad and the Baltimore and Ohio as each sought to design faster, more powerful, and more efficient steam locomotives to pull their trains over the mountains. Later, as each railroad competed with the other for the highly lucrative and profitable traffic to and from New York City, further locomotive designs were developed tested and deployed by each company to varying degrees of success.

"Frank Wrabel tells the story of each railroad's quest to capture the passenger traffic between New York and the Midwest. Each railroad would use new technology and new designs to build faster and more luxurious trains in an intense technological and marketing competition for business.

"The winner of the contest would have some of the finest locomotives and passenger trains in the world - but would it be enough for the company to gain an advantage over its competitor?"