The electric railways of North America served a variety of purposes: carrying commuters, industrial switching, and mainline freight and passenger service. From coal-hauling, six-axle, red-white-and-blue motors in British Columbia to plain green electric M.U. cars in New Jersey, there can be broad interest in electric railroads. Noted railfan Matthew Herson has lent his photographic collection to create this 128-page volume.
The book generally shows four photos per spread, a format that provides hundreds of color photos for the reader. However, it lacks any type of index or table of contents. The book opens with British Columbia Hydro and ends with Reading commuter operations. Other railroads covered include fan favorites Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee (10 pages) and Milwaukee Road (22 pages), along with more obscure operations like Cuban Railways (10 pages) and Yakima Valley Trolley (4½ pages). Curiously, the New Haven section also includes equipment painted for Amtrak, Conrail, and Penn Central.
The book Electric Railways of North America is a nice addition for budding electric traction fans, offering an overview of various freight and passenger operations at once.
By George W. Hamlin. Morning Sun Books, Avon-by-the-Sea, N.J. 128 pages, $69.95.