Saturday, July 30, 2016

Review: Morning Sun Books: NH Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment

Morning Sun Books: NH Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment
by David R. Sweetland, Stephen Horsely
The New York, New Haven and Hartford railroad connected New York City with Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Commonly known the New Haven, it was the largest and most powerful of the New England railroads. I first learned of the New Haven through Lionel Trains when I was a child. The black boxcar with NH in block letters was very appealing. Over 55 years later, it still looks fine.
The New Haven was a very attractive railroad. Its original color was green with yellow trim. Its logo at that time was New York, New Haven and Hartford in cursive script. The color scheme changed under a company president named McGinnis. Though a failure as president, he introduced the bright color scheme of black, white and orange with block letters. Known as the "McGinnis Scheme", it made the New Haven the most colorful Northeastern railroad.
I have no personal connection with the New Haven, except for having ridden Amtrak from New York to Boston’s Back bay station a couple of times in the 80s. Amtrak followed the old New Haven route. My interest was due to the attractive boxcars, locomotives and passenger cars. It was a big part of Northeastern railroading for many years, until it was absorbed into the Penn Central merger.
This week, I received the New Haven Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment by Morning Sun Books. It covers the era of color photographs: 1940 to 1967. Most of the photos were taken between 1955 and 1967. Some show older equipment that was still on the line. Most photos are of equipment that was current at the time.
The quality of the photos is excellent. This has been a constant through all of the Color Guides I have seen: the Erie-Lackawanna, CNJ & LV, Erie & DL&W, New York Central and the New Haven. This volume covers boxcars, flat cars, hoppers, gondolas, MoW, cranes, cabooses, cars converted to head-end or MoW, and passenger cars. Because of the interest of the authors and the involvement of the New Haven Historical and Technical Association, there is information of rebuilt wood boxcars and captions with specific details of most cars.
Other companies have published photo galleries showing New Haven rolling stock, but they are not in color. This color guide is in crisp, sharp color. The photos are excellent and they give you a much better feel for the equipment. Good photography is a standard in Morning Sun Books. I have ten of their books and the color images in each are superb.
I recommend NH Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment to fans of the New Haven Railroad.
I am primarily an operator of O and O27 trains. I have a few railroads that I especially like. One thing I enjoy is running models of trains in the livery of those railroads. I like having good references to the motive power and rolling stock of those roads. The Morning Sun books have been useful to me. They average about 130 pages and are chock full of excellent photographs.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoy the model trains made by Marx and Kusan that bear the colors of the New Haven Railroad.