Monday, September 2, 2013
New York Trip 2013 Part 3
Today we are visiting the Nickel Plate Railroad Museum, officially called the Mad River and NKP Museum, in Bellevue, Ohio. On the way there, we pass through Monroeville and find this unique little switcher. Unfortunately, there was no one around to tell us about it.
Cyrus Osborn of General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD). In 1944, while traveling in an EMD-built Rio Grande locomotive through Glenwood Canyon in Colorado, it was Mr. Osborn that recognized the wonderful views the passengers could enjoy from a panoramic dome. His idea was to provide a full 360-degree view from above the train in newly built "Vista-Dome" cars. Mr. Osborn took the idea to the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad (CB&Q). The CB&Q took a stainless steel Budd-built coach and rebuilt it at their shops in Aurora, Illinois, with the Vista Dome imagined and sketched by Cyrus Osborn. The dome area featured seats that were positioned lengthwise in the cabin facing double-pane windows which were designed to improve insulation. This first Vista Dome was called appropriately, Silver Dome. On July 23, 1945, the car was tested in the consist of the Twin Cities Zephyr. Vista Domes quickly found their way into many Burlington Zephyr consists, culminating in 1949 with the inauguration of the California Zephyr.