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Introducing... The Museum of Railway Timetables!

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Joined
Mar 9, 2011
Messages
2
Location
Villisca, Iowa
This is a wonderful resource, and beautifully executed. It is a rare pleasure to be able to view in full resolution. Thank you very much.

Thank you also for the nicely conceived and well run AmtrakUnlimited website.

Is anyone aware of online editions of Railway Guides for those of us who need pre-Amtrak schedule data?
 

MrFSS

Conductor
Honored Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2004
Messages
9,713
Location
Central Kentucky
This is a wonderful resource, and beautifully executed. It is a rare pleasure to be able to view in full resolution. Thank you very much.

Thank you also for the nicely conceived and well run AmtrakUnlimited website.

Is anyone aware of online editions of Railway Guides for those of us who need pre-Amtrak schedule data?
Thanks for the compliments.

Try eBay for Official Railway guides, both printed and on DVD. That site usually has lots of them for sale.
 
G

GeoffM

Guest
An excellent resource - thank you! I will spend many happy hours browsing through this collection.
 

Blue Marble Travel

Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 7, 2011
Messages
178
Location
Paris, France
Can anyone suggest a place to buy old Amtrak timetables on line? Or, for that matter, pre-Amtrak timetables? Thanks in advance!
eBay
Thanks... I imagine that that would work well if you were looking for a specific timetable, or even topic (such as, "Pennsylvania Railroad"). I'd be interested in a place that had a catalogue of different things for sale, since I am working on a collection. But I'll try ebay, and see what I can find....
 

trainman74

Conductor
Joined
Apr 7, 2011
Messages
1,658
Location
Sherman Oaks, CA
I'd be interested in a place that had a catalogue of different things for sale, since I am working on a collection. But I'll try ebay, and see what I can find....
There are some timetable dealers out there who issue catalogs. The first one that comes to mind (since I've been seeing his ads in railroad publications for decades) is Carl Loucks -- no website, but you can call him at 203-288-3765 to have a catalog sent to you.
 
F

fernando torres

Guest
dear friend

is a incredible task this compilation!!!!! and useful congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!

i never seen before this !!!!!!!!!!!!!! very gooooooood!!!!!

tanks Fer
 
D

david vartanoff

Guest
I believe my collection (not catalogued) has some items not in your archive. Do you want them either the treeware or scans? I want to empty the shelf space.

Thank you

iskandr at att dot net
 
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 10, 2020
Messages
8
Location
Great Britain
Dear friends,

I am proud to announce the public release of perhaps the single most ambitious online railroad effort in history. For the first time ever, a comprehensive digital archive of Amtrak schedules dating back to May 1, 1971 is open and ready for viewing at www.timetables.org.

This project has been in the works for over five years, and was a fully volunteer effort from start to finish.

I came up with the idea back in 2004 when complaints arose over the old MileTrak system's inability to account for trips taken on discontinued routes. It became clear to me very quickly that I would need to begin collecting old timetables in order to add this historical information to the system. In order for MileTrak to make use of schedule data for the calculation of mileage traveled, all of the stations and arrival times would have to be converted to text form. Of course, the imperfect nature of timetables produced before the digital era was such that accurate optical character recognition (OCR) is almost impossible. For that and other reasons, including a lack of time to keep developing the site, I shelved MileTrak – but I didn't stop collecting timetables.

After giving it some thought, I realized that the American passenger rail community – composed of travelers, advocates, researchers, historians, politicians and employees – would benefit much more from easy access to the timetable source materials, rather than just a niche application that made use of them. I decided that I would put together the resources to scan each and every page of the timetables, and host them for free on the Internet. It was a lofty and daunting goal!

My full-time career as a MIT student has left me with minimal free time to devote to the especially laborious task of flipping timetables page by page on a flatbed scanner. After a certain point, it became obvious that I would need some help if it was all to be finished in a reasonable time frame. What I really needed was a computer-savvy individual with the patience, skill, and attention to detail required to properly process and archive these delicate documents. I assure you that they cannot just be run through any ordinary document feeder!

About two years ago, I met my match right in my own backyard: Tom Bedwell, better known around here as MrFSS. Tom and I struck an arrangement whereby I would mail him packages of schedules, and he would then scan and upload them in digital form. Tom can give you a better idea of the time commitment on his part, but suffice it to say, it was substantial. Each national, northeast or system timetable took several hours to scan, correct, and organize. The end result is yours to behold.

We are just a few timetables away from a full digital set, and will finish scanning and processing them as we find the time. We are also aware that some adjustment is required with the interface and for certain images. But since we're so close, we figured it was ready to open up for everyone to enjoy. Tell all your friends, and share the link widely. All of the original ads, maps and photos are included in the timetables, which will make for hours of reading and entertainment. And finally, join us in our new Amtrak Timetable Discussion area to talk about the interesting things you find along the way.
Hi Anthony

You've kindly put 40+ years of Amtrak timetables online. The Timetable World website would like to re-publish your material but we'd like to do so after firstly making contact with you and doing so with your agreement. There is a forum thread here about us generally reaching out to timetable collectors, and working collaboratively with them:


Timetable World has a global audience. We have recently revamped the site and the technology to handle huge images effectively, even on mobile devices. Displaying all the Amtrak timetables together on one zoomable page - as is my current thinking - would enable users to view the ups and downs of the service easily over time.
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
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Location
South Carolina
Joined
Oct 10, 2020
Messages
8
Location
Great Britain
This is great, and I can see why it has taken several years to do. Making maps is very therapeutic, and it is nice to see the 1952 Official Guide on the legacy Timetable World site being put to use. The result should be enormously useful to timetable explorers. There are a number of things to discuss - credits, suggestions, next project etc - but it'd be better to do this off-forum. Can you please make contact via the address given on Timetable World Thanks.

Through contacts made with this forum - and our volunteers' scanning efforts - we have access to around 70 Guides and various historical maps etc. and aim to start publishing more US/CA timetables from December.
 
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