The double wood sheathed boxcar was legacy of the USRA. The federal government took control of the U.S. railroad system in 1917. Acting under the Wartime Powers Act, President Woodrow Wilson nationalized the railroads when they proved unequal to the task of moving massive amounts of men and materiel for the Great War in Europe. The agency that ran the trains was the United States Railroad Administration, or USRA, and one of its chief accomplishments was the building of nearly 100,000 freight cars of five standard designs, to relieve equipment shortages. By the time the last cars were delivered in 1920, 25,000 single-sheathed cars had been accepted by 22 railroads and 24,500 of the double-sheathed design by 24 railroads. Very few roads rostered both types. The USRA designs proved durable enough that many cars served through the next World War and years beyond, rolling alongside their newer all-steel brethren.
Manufacturer’s Junction Railway, served the Western Electric Hawthorne Plant, located in Cicero, IL. It commenced operations in 1906 and had 6 miles of track. The Hawthorne Works produced a large output of telephone equipment. In addition, Western Electric produced a wide variety of consumer products and electrical equipment, such as refrigerators. The works employed up to 45,000 employees at the height of operations. Workers regularly used bicycles for transit within the plant.
- 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