Tag Archives: TRAINS

“Give ’em hell” Harry! President Truman aboard his 1948 campaign train heading to win re-election.

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Faced with the likely loss of the 1948 presidential elections, President Harry S. Truman set out from Washington on September 17 on a twelve-day cross-country political barnstorming trip aboard the “Truman Special” from Washington Union Station. The barnstorming “Truman Special” makes a whistle-stop. At the last minute, wealthy Democrats had come through with last-minute contributions to make sure the “Truman Special” ... Read More »

Ships and Liners of Messageries Maritimes

MS Caledonien in Sydney Harbor,  from the collection of Richard Francis (taken February 1970).

Messageries Maritimes was a French merchant shipping company. It was originally created in 1851 as Messageries Nationales, later called Messageries impériales, and from 1871, Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes, casually known as “MesMar” or by its initials “MM”. Its rectangular house flag, with the letters MM on a white background and red corners, was famous in shipping circles, especially on the ... Read More »

Les Paquebots: Tahitien and Caledonien – Sailing from France, via the Panama Canal, to Cambodia and Vietnam.

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The Messageries Maritimes ships, the Calédonien and the Tahitian (later reborn as the cruise ship Atalante), sailed for two decades (1952 to 1972) on regular round trips lasting almost four months between Marseilles and Sydney. The two ships were beautifully designed passenger-cargo liners. These handsome ships carried cargo, passengers, and military personnel to French outposts in the Caribbean and the ... Read More »

PULLMAN IN BRITAIN – LUXURY DAY TRAVEL

Few people know that George Pullman’s hands stretched across the pond. The Pullman name existed in the United Kingdom for many years. Cruising the past looks at this famous British company, their Pullman trains and a video of the Brighton Belle. Youtube video of the final run of the PULLMAN BRIGHTON BELLE in 1972… The British Pullman Car Company was ... Read More »

Empire Builder to Milwaukee. From Streamliners to Amtrak.

Youtube video on the change from private rail service to Amtrak. Privately run intercity passenger service in Milwaukee was a thing of the past by early 1971. The Federal government had formed Amtrak to remove the burden of passenger service from the railroads and insure that core passenger routes remained active. By May 1st, when Amtrak rolled into Milwaukee, things ... Read More »

Passenger Train History: 1945 first class railway dining car service on the New York Central System. Complete breakfast for eighty five cents during World War Two.

During WW 2, railway dining cars were crowded because of the mass movement in the United States of civilian passengers and military personnel.   This is a New York Central System breakfast menu from WW 2 aboard a train in 1945: featuring the menu, wartime dining car policy and a massage about America. Read More »