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Site Updates.


New Sections.

Eureka & Palisade Railroad by Randy Hees.

Arizona Narrow Gauge Railroad by Randy Hees.

Mohave & Milltown by Randy Hees.

Farallon Midland by Andrew Brandon.

New Files.

South Pacific Coast Track Status Timeline by John Hall is available on the South Pacific Coast page. This chart gives an overview of the service dates and changes to the main line and branches.

Herman Darr's drawing catalog available on the site. His catalog comes in two PDF versions, one for printing, the other can be filled out in Adobe Acrobat Reader before printing.

Color Cards.

In an effort to answer "what color" a railroad's equipment was we've start compiling color matches from existant equipment. These layers of paint are then matched to the Pantone Color System and we've been creating color cards that you can download for your reference. These cards include rough service dates for the layers found in addition to providing a swatch of color. We hope you enjoy the first of many color cards to come!

South Pacific Coast Coach #39 by Randy Hees and Andrew Brandon. PDF icon 1.48 MB
South Pacific Coast Caboose #47 by Randy Hees and Andrew Brandon. PDF icon 0.88 MB
Virginia & Truckee Passenger Fleet Paint 1905 - 1950 by Randy Hees and Andrew Brandon.PDF icon 1.28 MB

The Data Column.

With the change of our site styling came a new addition to railroad pages, the Reference Data column. This column will contain quick reference material in the form of dates, rail weights, corporate ownership and more. To date three pages have gained the new data column: South Pacific Coast, North Pacific Coast, Watsonville Transportation Co., Watsonville Railway & Transportation Co.
Additional railroads will be recieving the new column once the information is compiled.

Map Additions and Updates.

Color Key.
We have assembled a color standard for our maps which has been rolled out in previous updates. We have finally made up a color key to accompany maps which explains the choice in colors for lines and objects. Previously this information was only available in discussion over on the forum. The key will be available in the collapsible box above the map on the page. As kml files on the site are updated, the color key will be inserted into future offline versions. A more detailed page outlining these standards is coming soon. If you like, you can download a copy for your own reference here.

Farallon Midland by Andrew Brandon - Added.

Southern Pacific Narrow Gauge ca. 1916 by Andrew Brandon - Updated. Added yard trackage at: Dayton, Mina, Laws. Photographs added near Mound House, Mina, Keeler, Mock and Churchill.

Monterey and Salinas Valley by Andrew Brandon - Added.


This update is overdue, inteded to be announced back in April. You may have discovered the links were live to a couple of these new listings, some of which have been active since that time. That said, we are pleased to announced the following roads have been added:

U.S Navy, Pearl Harbor by Jeff Livingston.

Yellow Pine Mining by Andrew Brandon.

Watsonville Railway & Transportation Co. by Andrew Brandon.

Quartette Mining Co. by Randy Hees.

American Borax Co. by Randy Hees.

Alaska Pulp & Paper Co. compiled by Gabe Emerson.

U.S. Gypsum.

Map Additions and Updates.

U.S. Gypsum by Andrew Brandon - Added.

Watsonville Railway & Navigation by Andrew Brandon - Added.

Yellow Pine Mining Co. by Andrew Brandon - Added.

El Dorado Lime & Mineral Co. by Andrew Brandon - Updated.

Colusa & Lake Railroad by Andrew Brandon - Updated.


We are pleased to announce Jeff Livingston as a contributor. Jeff is a historian involved with the Hawaiian Railway Society and has contributed two new articles to the site. Welcome Jeff!

California & Nevada Railroad. - By John Hall.

Koolau Railway. - By Jeff Livingston.

Oahu Railway & Land Co. - By Jeff Livingston.

Map Updates.

All map pages are currently in the process of being upgraded to utilize the Google Maps API. New features include enhanced controls and a full screen viewing option. We hope you enjoy the change.

California & Nevada Railroad - Added.

Southern Pacific Narrow Gauge, 1916 - Added.

Site Updates.

Apollo Mining Company. - By Gabe Emerson.

Tonopah Railroad. - By Randy Hees.

Modoc Lumber Co. - By Randy Hees.

The Image Gallery now has over 1200 items! We are still working to get item descriptions and previously posted items restored as time allows. We have added the ability to link off site images in the albums. As some of you are aware, images that get digitized often lack the care of research a railroad historian might give them. Often, students or interns try to describe the image as best as possible, other times a caption might be completely inaccurate to begin with. Off site linking will allow us to help get these images organized and easier to find despite this obstacle.

"Kyle's Corner" has now become "Curator's Corner".

Added: "The Bloggery", our new Blog.

Many broken links have been repaired.

Map Updates.

San Joaquin & Sierra Nevada - Now includes yard trackage in Lodi, as depicted in Sanborn maps.

Apollo Mining Company - Added.

Tonopah Railroad - Added.

October 15, 2012

We regret to report of troubles with the Image Gallery which has seen the page unavailable for more than a week now. We are currently working on resolving the issue and hope to restore this section in the near future. We would also like to take this time to warn about a future change of site hosts in the future. At present, there is no target date. We will give plenty of advance warning (like this) as we approach the move.

New Railroads:

The Merced Gold Mining Co. By John Swiger.
The Watsonville Transportation Company. By Andrew Brandon.

"Honorary" Narrow Gauge Bonus:

Virginia & Truckee - Baldwin Locomotive Spec Sheets. Available for download in .zip format.


April 12th 2012.

New Sections

Brooks Locomotive Works. - Brief Description and reference links.

The H.K. Porter Company. - Brief Description and reference links.

New Article
Boxcars: The Roof Problem. A discussion of boxcar roof evolution by Randy Hees.

SPNGHS Website & 2012 Conference

March 23rd, 2012.

The Southern Pacific Narrow Gauge Historical Society now has a website online at: Visit their site for more information about the 2012 Conference at Ardenwood in Newark, Ca. June 21th - 24th.

August 1st 2011
New Additions:
The Apex Gold Mine Railroad. By John Taubneck.
The White Pass & Yukon Railroad.
The Columbia & Puget Sound.
The Seattle & Walla Walla by Heather M. MacIntosh . (Creative Commons).
Section: Railroad Manuals (Poor's, Moody's, etc) - This section will be a growing list of manuals available online.

Updates: Colusa and Lake map for Google Earth.
Nevada County Narrow Gauge map for Google Earth.
New NPC Photos from Tomales Regional History Center
New Russia Iron Sample From V&T #20 "Tahoe" at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania.
The Very Image of the Past: Old Photographs and the Restoration of Historic Railroad Equipment by Kyle Wyatt. JOURNAL of the WEST Vol. XXXIII, NO. 2 April, 1994. Department of History, Kansas State University. 6MB

Printer Friendly Option: Due to overwhelming demand we've added a special link to pages which will allow you to view a printer safe versions of pages throughout the site. This printer safe option will remove most of the site formatting and color scheme, giving you a basic black and white page for printing.

July 30th, 2010.

Site Updates/Changes.

While the update notification on the page has not been changed since December, we've been hard at work adding data to the site. The highlight of this round of updates is David Fletcher's wonderful article: The Baldwin Styles - The Colour & Architecture of US Locomotives.
If you've been curious how Baldwin painted their locomotives, this is the article for you. David gives background on the locomotive design trends of the 19th century and explains the mystery behind the Baldwin style system.

New sections:

The Dayton, Sutro & Carson Valley. By John Barnill
The Nevada Central Railroad. By Craig Hoefer
The Austin City Railway.. By Craig Hoefer
The Sonoma Valley Prismoidal. By Andrew Brandon
The Sonoma Valley Railroad. By Andrew Brandon
The Marsh Lumber Co. By John Barnhill

Updated Sections

Period Paint - Several new books have been added. Bodie & Benton, West Side Lumber Co., Empire City Railway, Sanger Lumber Co.
Image Library - Albums for: Eureka Mill Railroad, Eureka - Nevada Railway, Lake Tahoe Railway & Transportation Co., Pacific Coast Railway, Sierra Lumber Company, Utah Northern and several others.

December 5th 2009.

Site Updates.

We have worked up a new site design using a tab system, this should help organize narrow gauge railroads in each state. As we are continuing to grow rapidly expect more changes in the future. Other changes about the site: The page should now stretch to fit your screen, font sizes are slightly larger and we've been working to make the site easier to read. We always welcome feedback, if you have any issues with the site or would like to make a suggestion do not hesitate to email or leave a message on the forums.

New section and Google map for State Belt Railroad of California.

New section and article for the National Locomotive Works.

New section for the Dayton, Sheridan & Grand Ronde.

New section for Period Paint. This will be our ever growing home for information relating to period paint and its usage. This is a broad scope of study and will go beyond Locomotive and Equipment paint as it grows.

New section for State Railroad Commission Reports. California, Nevada and Oregon have begun to be listed at present.

New sections for the San Joaquin & Sierra Nevada, Diamond & Caldor, Mich-Cal and El Dorado Lime & Mineral Co.

More NCNG News Clippings.

New article; "West Side" Donkey Roster: Steam Donkeys of Tuolumne County. by John A. Taubeneck

Locomotive sandbox orders by David Fletcher. Quick reference for identifying locomotive builder sandbox/dome designs.

New information for the Monterey and Salinas Valley Railroad including the articles of incorporation, 1876 timetable, 1878 freight/passenger tariffs and a period news article of M & SV 4-4-0 #2 passing through Truckee en route to the M & SV.

Sept. 21th, 2009. - Updates.

  • Bodie and Benton Google Earth Maps added.
  • 4 SPC photographs added courtesy the SPCRR (Al Barker Collection).

    Sept. 9th, 2009. - Updates.

  • Added 1885 Towle Brothers Article from the Placer County Republican to Towle Bros. Page.
  • Added Link to West Side Lumber Co. Image Gallery, Ede Biro is adding recent photos of structures and remains.
  • Added Requiem for the West Side Lumber Company. by Hart Corbett.
  • Added Article on construction of Monterey and Salinas Valley to M & SV page.
  • Updated text and images for Hoefer Design Studios page.
  • Updated Contributors page text.
  • Added 2 SPC photos to gallery.
  • Added Santa Cruz Railroad "Jupiter" image to gallery.

    Aug. 29th, 2009. - Site Online.

    After many hours of work we are pleased to announce that is online. Please be patient as we will be continuing to add more data to the site in the coming weeks.

    We are contacting a core of experts on additional roads for contributions! After we've established the initial batch of maps and fine tuned Mapping Standards we will open up to additional contributors. These are a lot of work but fun to research and create. More later!

    If you would like to be considered as a Contributor Candidate or would like to suggest an individual for the next phase of growth, drop us a note. We'd love to hear from you!

    Regions and Roads that are open include: Southern California
    Washington State
    British Columbia
    Central and South America.

    Stop back periodically to check us out!
    And thanks for your patience.

    The Crew

    We'd love to hear from you with comments and suggestions.
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