Monday, March 31, 2014

Sunday, March 16, 2014


After several sessions of fiddling around with track placement in the HBS yard, I have finally glued down my first bit of track here at the crossing by General Foods. I've started in the center bottom of the yard after laying out 3/4 of the layout dry to make sure the arrangement I designed would actually work.

There will be minor adjustments responding to reach and convenience, but I believe the plans can be realized very closely and work as desired.

I'm using clear adhesive non-silicone caulk in small amounts to affix (tack) track directly to plywood. There are no profiles to the roadbed in what I am modeling, so I'm not bothering with roadbed at all. Most of the track is either in asphalt, concrete or cobblestone, so the plywood will do. Speeds are going to be slow, so I'm not even worried about sound transmission noise. 

Nothing else to see here today, but this is enough to feel good about the layout. 

Saturday, March 1, 2014

March 1st at the USDA and North German Lloyd Docks

A 1942 photograph of the United States Department of Agriculture building on the Hoboken Shore Railroad. (collection of author)

The USDA building in this Baltimore Sun photograph from March 1, 1942. As stated on the reverse, this is where plant and plant products are inspected and fumigated before making their way deeper into the continent.  The building was completed in 1940 at 209 Hudson Street. More photos can be found at the Library of Congress. At right in the photo is a Pennsy boxcar delivered by the HBS and at left is the entrance to the North German Lloyd docks.

Located near the end of the line.

The reverse of this postcard states that it "may be used for correspondence after March 1st 1907." (collection of author)

A postcard more clearly shows the entrance gate seen in the USDA photograph above. I have a pretty strong feeling that this gate is gone by the late 1950s when the Port Authority was occupying the head house. There is a different level of care about the built environment as we move towards modernity. Somehow with all the advances of manufacturing, business and general enlightenment, we can no longer afford nice things. Is that really advancement? Perhaps it is really that the advancement in society is that we have chosen extreme financial concentration over a well-financed built environment.