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NARROW GAUGE RAILWAYS OF CUBA                                                                               Limp/B $69.95 $7.00


Christopher    Walker


Following years of research, this is the first substantial survey and history of the narrow gauge railways of Cuba. It is a comprehensive analysis of the rich narrow gauge heritage of this fascinating Caribbean island from the first initiatives in the 1860s up to the present day including public “common carrier” railways, sugar mill systems, recreational lines, other industrial railways, and as a pioneer user of portable railway systems: where every known narrow gauge line is recorded. Detailed historic rosters of many systems feature, including all known internal combustion locomotives from the first arriving in 1910 right up to post revolution Ministry of Sugar [“Minaz”] all-time diesel lists.

This is an exploration of the breadth and diversity of Cuban narrow gauge ranging from hand-worked lines, steam powered pas­senger consists and mixeds, homemade railcars ambling along by-ways, certainly not just limited to sugar cane haulage and also serving a surprising range of other industries. Substantial public railways carrying passengers and a variety of freight operating extensive networks with purpose-built stations have now disappeared, but their history and relics are explored. Early motive power from Britain was followed by classic locomotives from the USA dominating the rosters, with continental European builders making some contributions. Gauges ranging from miniature to four feet are featured.

The book is to the usual Trackside standards in our larger format on glossy heavyweight paper, digitally composed, and printed by Amadeus, maintaining our traditional feel and is the biggest we have ever produced with 216 pages including 16 in colour. It features an unprecedented 370 images and many maps drawing on archive material some dating from the nineteenth century, ranging up to modern images of trains in action in more recent years of operations, with very little having been published before. They include extremely rare pictures of trains in service and builder’s photographs of locomotives and equipment from specialist collections and libraries. The author has drawn on a very wide range of sources and has been helped by leading Cuban researchers, railway professionals and historians, and also by experts from around the World. Many lines never enjoyed official status and investigating their origins has involved delving into obscure records and field research. There are a considerable number of detailed appendices.  NOTE: The The limited edition hardback was sold out just one month after release although may eventually be reprinted if demand is sufficient. 

If you are interested in Cuban narrow gauge railways, you will also be interested in John Raby's outstanding DVD - follow the link below:





THE NITRATE RAILWAYS                                                                                 Hard/B $61.95   Limp/B $49.95

Donald Binns


21.5 x 27 cms, 104 pages with over 170 images, maps and diagrams, including 4 pages of colour. The definitive history of a fantastic railway that attempted to establish a monopoly in northern Chile over the transportation of nitrate concentrates mined from the slopes of the Andes and destined for fertiliser, explosives and other products. A standard gauge system with ferocious grades that used progressively bigger motive power including nineteenth century tank engines, Double-Fairlies, Garratts and Baldwin mikados. It has now disappeared.


RAILWAYS OF PERU –Vol 1 The Northern Lines                                                                           Hard/B $99.95      

Robert Whetham


21.5 x 27 cms, 100 pages with over 170 images, maps and diagrams including a 4 page colour section. The railways in the north of Peru nearly all ran inland from the pacific coast on a wide range of gauges serving mineral and agricultural areas. They had an incredible range of motive power, some extremely ancient with a scattering of modern. The last survivors were sugar mills operating in the 1970s but all have now gone, so this book is a record of railways that were little recorded and are now being forgotten.       



RAILWAYS OF PERU – Volume 2: The Central and Southern Lines                                       H/B $61.95  L/B $49.95    Not in Stock

Robert Whetham

21.5 x 27 cms, 104 pages with nearly 200 images, maps and diagrams including an 8 page colour section ranging from original nineteenth century construction up to the present day.

Following his first volume covering all the northern lines of Peru issued in 2007 [please see above], Peruvian expert Bob Whetham has followed up in 2008 with the concluding volume which covers the rest of Peru's railways recounting the history of nearly thirty different systems on eight gauges ranging from 50 centimetres to 4 feet 8 1/2 inches which operated in widely diverse conditions on the coastal plains or the high Andes. Many of these railways have seen little published anywhere.   

This concluding volume on Peru covers Peru's most famous and operationally demanding main lines: the Central Railway and the Southern of Peru that ascend into the Andes feature prominently as do the systems that connect with them, many serving mineral enterprises in difficult to access areas. The two major three-foot lines: the FC Huancayo-Huancavelica and FC Cusco-Santa Ana [the Machu Picchu route] are covered in detail.  The railways on the plains that link the coast to the interior are not forgotten, some rarely visited by travellers. The final chapter examines the railways in territory ceded to Chile in 1883 covering the very early days of the Nitrate Railways and the Patillos Railway. Every known system is examined .

There are nearly 200 images including an eight page colour section which range in age from the 1870s to the present day including some archive colour slides from the 1950s, often in spectacular scenery. Motive power was wonderfully diverse with rugged Baldwins, ALCos and Henschels joined by Beyer Peacocks. Modern power is not ignored including Southern Peru Copper who have never owned a steam loco.  Many types of motive power are illustrated , and there are detailed rosters for each system and clear maps. The book has been printed by the longstanding Trackside printer Amadeus Press and continues the tradition of high grade glossy paper and quality reproduction of images.


RAILWAYS OF LATIN AMERICA IN HISTORIC POSTCARDS                                       L/B  $24.95

Christopher Walker

21.5 x 27 cms, 84 pages with over 200 images and a map. We have a limited number of new copies of this classic Trackside book published in 1997. It provides a survey of many countries through the eyes of local photographers largely at the beginning of the twentieth century who took pictures of what they thought was interesting and reflected daily life - without the self-consciousness of the railway enthusiast. In consequence this book portrays rare postcard images that include the most obscure and the long forgotten of railways.

NARROW GAUGE IN COLOMBIA - Railways & Steam Locomotives    [limited stock-enquire!]     H/B Not Avail. L/B   $80.00

ONLY ONE EACH IN STOCKChristopher Walker


21.5 x 27 cms, 96 pages with over 170 images, maps and diagrams. The only English language history of Colombia's railways which struggled to overcome daunting terrain to eventually become a largely united system despite many lines intend to join up being originally constructed of different gauges! This was one of the countries that triumphed with the Kitson-Meyer under the regime of the great executive locomotive designer P C Dewhurst who created a fleet of standard designs some of which were still being built a generation later!  These are contrasted with later equipment designed as well as built in the USA and Belgium.


FAIRLIE ARTICULATED LOCOMOTIVES on the AMERICAN CONTINENT                                 L/B $24.95

Donald Binns


18.5 x 24 cms, 96 pages with over 120 images, maps and diagrams. This book in a slightly smaller format than our standard size covers every conceivable type of articulated locomotives built to the Robert Fairlie principles that existed in the Americas including the products of the Mason Machine Works of Massachusetts. Many countries tried them and some persisted for a long time where Mexico developed the Double-Fairlie to its ultimate size. Author Donald Binns has made a life-long study and the illustrations are very comprehensive.




THE ANGLO-CHILEAN NITRATE & RAILWAY COMPANY                                 L/B $59.99

Donald Binns

21.5 x 27 cms, 76 pages with over 132 images, maps and diagrams. This book, published in 1995 is an in depth coverage of this 42" gauge nitrate hauling northern Chili railroad opened in 1889 and still running. Starting at Puerto de Tocopilla on the Pacific coast it rose on 4% grades, loops and switchbacks to 4000 feet on the altoplano and a connection with the F C Longitudinal al Norte. Original motive power was Fairlies which were not successful, 0-6-4Ts and 4-8-4Ts followed in 1894 by the first Kitson Meyers, 2-6-2Ts and 0-4-2Ts. In 1927 the railroad was electrified with G. E. boxcab electrics but steam such as an Baldwin 0-6-6-0 built for Russia and assorted diesels ran near the mines feeding cars to the electrified line down the hill. Los Angeles Ry. PCC cars, C N Newfoundland diesels and many other assorted American diesels were added and most of these are used on this active railroad that is now somewhat of a tourist line. Author Donald Binns has made a life-long study and the illustrations are very comprehensive.


THE CENTRAL RAILWAY OF PERU and CERRO DE PASCO RAILWAY                                 L/B $49.99

Donald Binns

21.5 x 27 cms, 80 pages with over 132 images, maps and diagrams. This book, published in 1996 is an in depth coverage of these two associated railroads that run from sea level to the highest standard gauge railroad pass in the Western Hemasphere. The railroad was started from Lima in 1870 and was completed to Oroya (after passing over a 15,000 foot pass) in 1893. The railroad incloded tunnels, spectalular bridges and double switchbacks that many describe as the most spectacular railroad in the world. The Cerro de Pasco Ry. a large industrial railway that ran north from Oroya is also studied. Complete all time rosters for both railroads and a large selection of photos are included. Because of the curves and steep grades, the steam locomotives were very unique designs. The book is really helped by many excellent photos from the 1930 by Brian Fawcwtt. Author Donald Binns has made a life-long study and the illustrations are very comprehensive.


KITSON MEYER ARTICULATED LOCOMOTIVES                                 H/B $89.99

Donald Binns

21.5 x 27 cms, 128 pages with over 152 images, maps and diagrams. This book was published in 1985 by Wyvern Publications before Trackside Publications was formed. The Meyer design is defined as a steam locomotive with a single locomotive boiler mounted on a central frame siting on two frames with two sets of drive wheels, two sets of cylinders and transmission by coupling rods and the fuel and water on the main frame. The first qualifing locomotive was built in 1851 for the Semmering trials in Austria. In 1867 the design was improved and a 0-4-4-0T was built for J & A Meyer and later improved locos were built in western europe (all illustrated). In 1890 the Saxon State Rys. of Germany built some standard gauge 0-4-4-0T and followed them with narrow gauge examples. Baldwin built a Meyer 0-6-6-0T for the Sinnemahoning Valley RR in 1892. In 1894 Kitson built a very similar 0-6-6-0T to the design of the Anglo Chilian Nitrate & Railway Co and it's success and reorders convinced Kitson they had a winner. Over the next 30 years (especially with the help of P C Dewhurst) the concept was developed into a very competant design. If Kitson had had the marketing skill of Beyer Peacock (Garrett), the Kitson Meyer could have sold many more locomotives as they were much more flexible and could handle much tighter curves and with separate tenders had extended range and reduced traction loss as fuels were used. The book covers the basic development with heavy emphesis on the Kitson Meyers. Most were built for S. America; the Chilian nitrate rys. on the Pacific coast, the Autofagasta (Chili) and Bolivia and the 0-6-6-0Ts, 2-6-6-2Ts and 2-8-8-2T for Colombia, and the Rack and adhesion 0-8-6-0Ts for the Chilean and Argentinian Transandine Ry. Each is covered in its own chapter. A chapter covers Kitson Meyers for Brazil, Jamaica, India, S. Africa, Spain and Manila. It also has a chapter on Kitson Meyer type locomotives built by other British builders, most were very small industrial locos (one now displayed at Cripple Creek, Colorado). Also discussed are the SL&M built meter gauge 0-6-6-0 powered rotary snow plows and the 70 Du Bousquet 0-6-2+2-6-0T built for France, China and Spain. Also discussed are the North British Modified Fairlie's for S. Africa, the Vulcan Duplexes of the USA and the Alco proposed 4-8-2+2-8-4T + Ts for the SP. Author Donald Binns has made a life-long study and the illustrations are very comprehensive and the book is beautifully printed and bound. See below for a complimentary book.


MEYER ATRICULATED LOCOMOTIVES -A Definitive History                                 L/B $79.99

Donald Binns & Gunter Koch

21.5 x 27 cms, 110 pages with over 180 images, maps and diagrams. This book, published in 1997 is a complement to the Kitson Meyer book (above) with the emphesis shifted from the Kitson Meyer locomotives which are briefly covered to all the other Meyer type locomotives produced in western europe. The Saxon State Railway standard and narrow gauge Meyer locomotives were built from 1890 to 1967 and still run in tourist service in eastern Germany. The Henschel Modified Fairlies for S. Africa, the Du Bousquet 0-6-2+2-6-0Ts for France, China and Spain, the Ducaville 2-6-6-2Ts for Morocco and the large Golwe 2-6-6-2T and 2-6-6-4T for the Ivory Coast and Congo are discussed in detail. The British built Meyers including the Kitsons are discussed lightly along with the Vulcan Duplexes and several other American Meyers. Author Donald Binns has made a life-long study and the illustrations are very comprehensive and some of these odd locomotives fascinating. Gunter Koch provides the chapters on the Saxon Meyers.


RAILWAYS OF BOLIVIA                                             L/B $89.99

Donald Binns

21.5 x 27 cms, 128 pages with over 173 images, maps and diagrams. This book, published in about 2003 is an in depth coverage of all the railroad operations public and private in the country. The different railroads were mostly privately built and the railroads, locomotives and equipment had great variety and the assortment of passenger motorcars and motorized automobiles is truly amazing. Steam locomotives go from 0-4-0Ts, shays, Alco and Rogers 2-8-0s, Meyer Kitsons, Garetts and post war 2-8-4s and many more. Authors Christopher Walker and Donald Binns have studied South America and the history and illustrations (many by David Ibbotson) are very comprehensive.





La SEGUNDA MULA de HIERRO                                 H/B $90.00

Gustavo Arias de Greiff

9 1/4" x 12 1/2", 373 pages with over 475 images, maps and diagrams. This book, published in 2006 is an in depth coverage of the narrow gauge rairoads of the country of Colombia. The country is very mountainous and early transportation was based on steamboats on the two major rivers of the country with steam railroads feeding to these rivers and portaging around impassable spots in the rivers. The early railroads were private enterprises, provincially built lines to support transportation needs and nationally supported lines. Most of these lines were built to meter or 36" gauge and many were isolated lines. As lines expanded, interconnected and merged several large systems emerged. The national government tried to integrate the various lines into a national system in the 1920s using money from the USA (compensation for separating Panama from Colombia to build the canal) and hired British engineer P C Dewhurst as Technical Director to supervise the integration of the independent lines into a national system. He developed standard locomotive designs and the railroads of the country started to look like a national system but the last meter gauge lines were not converted to 36" gauge until the 1950s and the last independent system and final construction to tie all the lines together was completed in the early 1960s.

This beautiful book is printed on glossy paper with a very short history in Spanish with the largest and most interesting part a chronoligically arranged selection of (424) steam and (87) diesel locomotive photos (most in color) from the 1870s to now with captions in English and Spanish. The photos taken by P C Dewhurst in the 1920s of all the weird locos he found on the various systems are a fascinating collection of one of a kind 0-4-2Ts, 2-4-2s, 0-6-2s, an 0-6-4T, 2-6-0s, 2-8-0s and others by Porter, Rogers, Pittsburgh, Virginia Iron Works, Rhode Island, Hinkley, Grant, Glover, Alco, Baldwin etc. In the 1920s Dewhurst designed standardized 4-8-0s, 2-6-0+0-6-2T Meyer Kitsons, 4-6-2s, 2-6-2Ts and 4-8-2s. They bought their last steam engine in 1955. Truck competition has killed most freight operation and the natioonal railway is currently hardly a functioning system although over 20 GE U-18Cs and U-20Cs run a heavy duty coal hauling operation to the north coast. Seventeen pages have full color paintings of interesting steam scenes and the last section is a locomotive by locomotive roster with dimensions of every locomotive that ever ran in the country. Author Gustavo Arias has worked for the National Railway for years and has made a life-long study of the railway and this book is a fitting tribute to the largest 36" gauge railway in the world. If you love narrow gauge and interesting steam locomotives this is a must for your book shelf. We import these directly from Colombia. For a British review see http://www.internationalsteam.co.uk/newbooks.htm#6


THE ATLAS OF CUBA                                              H/B $99.99

13" x 10" - SLIP CASED, 160 pages. This book, published in 1978 is necessary for any researcher of Cuba, Cuba Railroads or Cuban sugar mills. It is an all color Atlas with exceptional amounts of information contained in the maps which makes the fact that the limited amount of writing is in Spanish of little concern to English only speakers. The first section is maps of the country showing geology, weather, population, minerals, commerce etc. Pages 64-65 shows every sugar mill with production capacity, products and the ports that handle the products. Pages 106 - 143 are high resolution maps of the whole country that show towns, roads, sugar mills and all railroad lines, both public and sugar mill owned and the narrow gauge lines are differentiated by thinner lines. The first railfans to visited Cuba in 1980 bought one each and they were indespensable in train chasing but by the late 1980s they became very hard to find. A friend of mine who worked for Exxon found these in Moscow and bought them for me, now you can have a like new copy.








We may be able to direct you to a supplier of our titles that are officially out of print: For example: Bolivia, Kitson Meyer and Russia.

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