The information presented following was cumulated from the January 1955 edition of the ORER (Official Railroad Equipment Register). The data pages for the Pennsylvania Railroad indicate that the data is current as of October 1, 1954.
Subclasses are tallied separately, with the exception of H21a, H21b, and H21e hopper cars which which were listed in different combinations, but combined here as "H21a & variants".
The list only takes into account equipment available for interchange, so does not include miscellaneous and maintenance of way equipment.
The referenced HO scale models are listed based on how the cars are lettered... not what they best represent. Some cars show comments as to their appropriateness, while cars that have not been evaluated are followed by a "(?)". "(OOB)" indicates that the manufacturer is out of business.
My compilation shows a total fleet of 183,689 cars available for interchange, broken out by Box, Gondola, Stock, Coke, Hopper, and Flat car types.
Keystone Crossings was a web site published by Jerry Britton from 1997 through June of 2018. The site featured prototypic and modeling information relevant to the Pennsylvania Railroad and achieved a sort of "cult following" during its 21 years in operation.
My first exposure to the World Wide Web was in 1992. At the time, there were no graphical web browsers. Browsing was solely text based and I used a program called Lynx to get around. I started learning HTML programming and was responsible for the initial web presence of Elizabethtown College, my employer at the time.
Graphical browsers came along shortly thereafter, and by 1996 I had the itch to build something bigger. Rather than writing meaningless code, strictly for the sake of doing so, I wanted a "real" subject that I could build on. I chose the Pennsylvania Railroad, never expecting that it would take on a life of its own.
The initial Keystone Crossing site lived on America Online and consisted of about a dozen pages. Bruce Smith, Rob Schoenberg, and I seemed to have the only Pennsy sites out there at the time.
The N8 was the final cabin car (caboose) built by the Pennsylvania Railroad. Two hundred examples were built between December 1950 and June 1951, numbered 478020 to 478219. Cars 478100 to 478219 featured inductive trainphone antennas and battery boxes. Approximately half of the fleet had electrical lighting.
Besides brass, the N8 is available as a kit or ready-to-run from Bowser. Decals have been available from Mount Vernon Shops.
The F22 was a 30' heavy duty flat car, commonly used in the transport of U.S. Navy battleship guns and earning the moniker "gun flats". The F22 was nearly identical to the F23 but featured a wood deck.
The following are former Pennsylvania Railroad passenger cars in active excursion service. RIding one of these is on my bucket list, though cost and recent Amtrak policy may shutter excursion service for good.
The Frank Thomson is one of seven cars built by Pullman to plan 4134 for the Pennsylvania Railroad. The series were named after PRR presidents and feature two drawing rooms, one compartment, one double bedroom, and observation section.
The first all-metal door to gain general acceptance was launched in 1910 by the Chicago Railway Equipment Corporation (Creco), a major supplier of other accoutrements to car builders. Creco three-panel steel doors were used on Pennsylvania Railroad’s X23 boxcars built in 1912 but acceptance of Creco doors remained limited. Things changed in 1923 when the three-panel bottom-supported Creco doors was applied to many PRR X29 boxcars. Variations of the Creco door continued in use into the 1940s.
Broadway Limited Imports has been a champion in providing HO scale modelers with a breadth of fine steam locomotives. Herein is a listing of classes and road numbers released to date (may not be complete).
Road numbers in bold are in my personal collection (or on order).
While a student at the Pennsylvania State University in the 1980s, I became aware of the Bellefonte Central Railroad, an 18 mile shortline that ran between State College and Bellefonte, Pa. At Bellefonte, the BCR interchanged with the Pennsylvania Railroad and the outside world.
In 2007, Mike Bezilla and Jack Rudnicki published a book entitled "Rails to Penn State: The Story of the Bellefonte Central". The book was an amazing read, and I was particularly drawn to a chapter highlighting excursion trains over the line. One, in particular, occured when United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower visited his brother, Milton, who was president of the university at the same time.
"Ike" made several visits to Penn State, but only once by train. The accounting of the trip furthered my interest in not only this particular outing, but in POTUS (President Of The United States) trains in general.
The president arrived in State College by train on May 9, 1953. In addition to the presidential car Ferdinand Magellan, there were six additional cars on the POTUS special: four Pullmans (McKeefry, Holbein, Glenn Cliff, and Flotow), a lounge car (Afton Canyon), and PRR diner #7966. The train carried about 65 passengers.