Athearn: 50' Single Sheathed Wood Boxcars
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Railroad boxcars are perhaps not only the best-recognized pieces of equipment ever put into service, but also one of the most identifiable symbols of the industry itself. During the early years of the industry freight was hauled on simple flatcars or early gondolas. In Upstate New York, the burgeoning Mohawk & Hudson Railroad, the first chartered system in the United States (which later became part of the New York Central), came up with the novel idea of covering its gondolas in 1833 to protect the loads from snow in the winter. The car’s development continued starting with basic wood construction with steel outside-bracing. The 50 foot size employed by the American Association of Railroads (AAR) was intended for hauling early automobiles and other large cargo. What made boxcars great, at least in the eyes of the railroads, was their ability to haul about anything! Railroads thrive on redundancy to maximize efficiency.