The railroads built America: up through WW2 they were the dominant form of transportation, with hundreds of major roads hauling passengers and freight. Most railroad lines were large enterprises requiring vast amounts of material and equipment to operate. Much of this material survives today and is sought after by collectors.

Railroadiana collectors will often focus on items from a specific region or railroad (New York Central, Southern Pacific, Baltimore and Ohio, Pennsylvania Central, Santa Fe, Norfolk and Western, Denver and Rio Grande, etc.), or on a specific type of item.

Some of the more popular collectible railroadiana categories include lanterns, calendars, postcards, posters, photos, passes, caps, china, silver and holloware, badges, pocket watches and signs.

There are also railroadiana collectors who focus on baggage tags, bells, builders plates, buttons, marbles, spittoons, uniforms, ashtrays, and railroad-related postal and telegraph items.

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If you've ever wondered how to tell real from fake railroad china, or how brass baggage tags originated, this extre… [read review or visit site]

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Recent News: Railroadiana

Source: Google News

Trains, Equipment, Railroad Memorabilia to Be Sold at Auction
Virtual-Strategy Magazine (press release), March 31st

Steam power will soon be a reality once again at Mid-Continent Railway Museum. As part of the Steam-Readiness Program, choice items that no longer fit the focus or needs of the museum will be offered to the public at auction. Conducted by United...Read more

Wally Kennedy: Whisler's, a Carthage icon, coming to Joplin
Joplin Globe, March 21st

The train car will have several booths, railroad memorabilia and a small area where children can celebrate their birthdays. “We will be including Old-Fashioned Whisler's Hamburgers in the train depot,'' Garrigan said. “We have worked out an agreement...Read more

Pieces of rail history WITH VIDEO
The Independent, March 21st

But many of their parents and grandparents found themselves poring over the vendor tables lined with railroad memorabilia, seeing in dusty old lanterns and tattered timetables the memories of an earlier time. “It brings back memories as kids,” said Tim ...Read more

ILLINOIS EXCHANGE: Train fair gives nod to Peoria's rail history
The Republic, March 19th

Gatlin Largent, 6, inspects a model train as it moves down a track displayed at the Peoria Train Fair in East Peoria, Ill. The event attracted hobbyists around the area to purchase model trains and accessories including books, DVDs and railroad...Read more

Railroad enthusiasts all aboard for annual model train, toy show
Charleston Daily Mail, March 12th

We've hit a milestone.” The show at Dunbar Parks and Recreation Community Center will include operating model railroad layouts, collections of railroad memorabilia, collectible toys and antiques. There will be more than 100 dealer tables with items for...Read more

Train fans to make tracks for big railroad expo this weekend
KY3, March 11th

The 37th annual Railroad Show will include a dozen operating model train layouts, hundreds of railroad memorabilia swap tables and vendors, along with special events for all ages. The event, planned for this Saturday, March 14th, at Remington's (1655 W...Read more

PERRIS: Train-themed swap met set
Press-Enterprise, March 4th

The Spring Railroadiana Swap Meet is set from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 7 at the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris. The open-air fundraising event for the nonprofit museum will feature 180-plus tables of railroad antiques, collectibles, art...Read more

Jean McClelland: Railroad memorabilia popular with many collectors
Huntington Herald Dispatch, January 31st

Many people have a fascination with trains and they honor that interest by collecting railroadiana. It is a very broad field so many folks scale it down to one aspect or another. One area that fills the bill for loads of people is railroad lanterns...Read more