The Ball Bothers started making glass jars in 1880. They moved their operation to Muncie, Indiana in 1886 to access an abundant supply of natural gas, much needed for glass manufacturing. The Muncie & Western Railroad was founded in 1902 solely to service the facilities of the Ball Brothers Glass Manufacturing Company. It operated on less than 10 miles of track inside their facility and interchange with the C&O, PRR, NKP, NYC at various locations around their factory complex.
Muncie’s boxcars were built by and leased from the Mather Stock Car Company’s Chicago Ridge shops. From the 1920s through the 1950s, when freight car manufacturing and leasing were largely the province of big corporations like General American and American Car & Foundry, the Mather Company remained relatively small, privately owned and presided over by its namesake, Alonzo C. Mather. Using proven designs and off-the-shelf components, his company cranked out utilitarian cars using a minimum of specialized components or machine tools. The hand-built cars were cheap to build and maintain, so the company flourished because its cars could be leased at very competitive rates. Because railroads couldn’t afford new cars from the major builders, the Mather Company’s shops built or rebuilt many box cars for lease during the Depression.
The MWR rolling stock consisted of 25 cars with an inside height of 9’-11”, Series 1276-1300 which were in service between 1940 and 1957. The greater majority of cars were the shorter 8’-5” IH cars. These consisted of the 1st series of cars received in the early 1930’s: Series 1200-1250. In 1938 the series had been extended to 75 cars: Series 1200-1275. These cars remained in service through 1957. An additional 85 cars were leased between 1954 and 1957, as Series 1101-1185.
- Intricately Detailed, Durable ABS Body
- Stamped Metal Floors
- Metal Wheels and Axles
- Die-Cast 4-Wheel Trucks
- Fast-Angle Wheel Sets
- Needle-Point Axles
- (2) Operating Die-Cast Metal Couplers
- O Scale Kadee-Compatible Coupler Mounting Pads
- Detailed Brake Wheel
- Separate Metal Handrails
- Sliding Car Doors
- 1:48 Scale Dimensions
- Unit Measures: 11 5/8” x 2 5/8” x 3 3/4”
- Operates On O-31 Curves