View single post by jtrain
 Posted: Sat Feb 11th, 2017 04:23 am
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Joined: Sun May 27th, 2012
Location: Missoula, Montana USA
Posts: 1000
On the "negativity" thread the topic came up as to who the first was to invent a specific gauge and scale combination.

That history is quite muddled, but I'd like to expand on the topic as I think I know who the founder of this great hobby is,
none other than Thomas Edison and Werner von Siemens.

Thomas Edison invented many things in his lifetime, including the light bulb, telegraph repeater, and phonograph;
but he also was the first American to make a smaller than prototype railroad that ran on electricity and carried passengers.

Need proof?

Here's a picture:

Image from


Just before Edison, Werner von Siemens invented the electric locomotive and had his own public display:

Both units were narrow gauge, built for entertainment (but with commercial prospects),
and most importantly, were powered through the rails with DC electricity.

These are the first two model trains in history.

Need more proof?

Here's the track plan for Edison's train at the Chicago exhibition:

Last two images are from Wikimedia commons.

What's your thoughts?

James W.

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