The Lionel O Scale 6-27091 3 Bay Hopper Car Western Maryland 85125 models the 3 bay hopper car. Hopper cars were a modification of the gondola car- the difference is higher sides and hoppers have an unloading bay underneath ("3 bay" indicates there are 3 unloading bays underneath the car). The first hoppers were of open top designs to transport coal, rock, and other bulk commodities. Later covered hopper cars- with a roof with loading doors- came into service for agricultural products and chemicals that needed protection from the elements. Around 1900 with larger more powerful locomotives and better roadbeds steel hopper cars began to replace earlier wood models. In the 1930s the 3 bay 70 ton hopper car was introduced and became so popular that by the 1950s the Association of American Railroads had designated the 70 ton 3 bay hopper car an "alternate standard".
Road Name and History:
Western Maryland Railway: The Maryland General Assembly chartered the Western Maryland Railway's predecessor line in 1852. A small railroad whose growth was stopped by the Civil War, the WM expanded in western Maryland during the 1870s-1880s. The railroad's major shareholder was the City of Baltimore, which in 1902 sold the railroad to the Gould interests. While closely associated with the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, the Western Maryland remained independent but seeing all the consolidation in the railroad industry joined C&O/B&O in 1967. Western Maryland lost its identity and much of its route structure in 1973 when the small railroad was merged into Chessie System.
Travel Tip: The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad operates a part of the former Western Maryland Railway main line between Cumberland and Frostburg, MD. On this beautiful segment this tourist railroad features WM's "Helmstetter's Curve".
Road Number: 85125
Recommended for Ages 14 and Up.
Length: 12 3/4"
Minimum curve: O-31