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The Westchester Electric Railways

George Isaacs models three related traction and heavy electric lines on one layout

PHOTO STORY BY GORDON ODEGARD
Model Railroader - June 1969

Isaacs & layout
Isaacs & layout

One of the fine layouts that will be on display during the NMRA national convention in Minneapolis, Minn., August 13 to 17, will be George Isaacs’ Boston & Westchester Ry. located in adjacent Saint Paul. It is a really fine pike measuring 5’-8” deep and 18’-l” long with a 5’-9”- long leg on one side.

The system represents three different operating companies: the Westchester Street Ry., the Westchester Terminal Ry., and the Boston & Westchester Ry. In this assemblage many sorts of traction equipment are represented. While the cars take their power from pantographs and pole trolleys, simulated third—rail collectors are also used; the third-rail division actually operates by two-rail methods. The scenery is well done and offers many interesting vistas. I was privileged to crawl through some access holes to see some views the average visitor would not see.

George’s concentration on electric equipment results from the experiences of his youth. He grew up around White Plains, N. Y., where the New York Central’s trains were handled by heavy electric locomotives. The Westchester Street Ry. was an actual company in the White Plains area. Some interurban and New Haven-type pieces of rolling stock are incorporated, using modeler’s license.

The model pike was started in 1955 while George was living in Beloit, Wis. It was built in sections so it could be taken apart and moved. It went to Minneapolis in 1957 and in 1965 it was again dismantled and moved to its present location in Saint Paul. The modeling represents the time of the middle 1930’s, which allows for a wide range of rolling stock and motive power. The pike is presently its intended full size, but the 2 x 8-foot section at Bedford remains to be completed.

George hopes to have this section completed by convention time so operations can be executed without the present necessity of having cars back down from the high bridge above Mount Kiscu.



The track layout appearing below displays numbers corresponding to the location and direction of images from the article. Click on any number to view the associated image and description. Image number 2 appears in the article above and is not clickable.

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