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Updated & Uploaded: August 13th, 2017

Charles Smiley Presents

Train Video Producers That We Carry
Charles Smiley Presents

DVD's are all in Alphabetical Order

Title & Description
Retail Price
Our Price
Canadian Rails Vintage Scrapbook

Visit Canada from 1939 to 1973 from New Brunswick to Vancouver Island. We bring lots of steam and the early diesels in both freight and passenger service. Many maps and special diagrams were specially prepared to highlight the features in this video. The film sources are numerous from many of the most famous rail fans that were active from the 1940s through the 1970s. See steam, electric and early diesel action from coast to coast! In-cab and trackside action brings you great scenery and a nostalgic look of stations and even tracks that disappeared years ago.
Lots of history and the best locations such as Banff, Lake Louise, Kicking Horse Pass Spiral Tunnels and Crowsnest Pass in the days of steam and diesel. Also, the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, Grand Trunk, Central Vermont, Soo Line logging lines and much more. To quote Railfan & Railroad magazine, “Here is another in an extensive catalog of must-own vintage videos from Charles Smiley, who is known for his excellent film transfers of often rare but always high-quality movie footage, extensive historical research, exquisite maps and excellent narration. Gain a better appreciation of the vastness of the fine country, marvel at the classic designs of its locomotives, stations and grand railroad hotels, and view its fantastic scenery. This program is also highly suitable for a variety of history classes. Long live maroon paint with gold striping” To quote Model Railroad News magazine, “Many of the shots belong in a feature movie or on a calendar because they are just breathtaking. Small wonder that Canadian rail tours are so immensely popular. In case you considered taking such a trip, give this video a look. Banff, Lake Louise, and Crowsnest Pass are among the treats for you to enjoy.
89 min

Conrail Hall of Fame 1976-1997

This is the 1976 to 1997 story of the Consolidated Rail Corporation, widely known as Conrail. It was created from the bankrupt Penn Central and a number of other bankrupt northeastern roads in 1976. We bring the early years of rebuilding, and the later years of a successful operation, that surprised nearly everyone. Everyone that is except the committed employees and the leadership Conrail had during its four phases of existence. This was like a four act play -- with every element needed to make a great story that will be studied by business analysts and rail historians for years to come. The four principal phases of Conrail's existence each had a CEO from a different business background that helped forge Conrail into a valuable operation. Our presentation includes many maps created especially for video to keep the viewer informed and to help paint the big picture. Once the system was stabilized, Conrail started making a profit and they went public with shares of stock that repaid all the accumulated debt. By the late 1980s Conrail was now taken seriously. Fortunately, all this was carefully recorded for history. This video has been created from the early movie filming and professional-format video material of three different rail historians each with their own talent and unique style. These are all visions you can no longer see along the rails of today. Conrail has since been divided and integrated into the Norfolk Southern and the CSX systems. Learn the plan that could have bolstered Conrail's future as a separate, large system -- but for a twist of fate. Our presentation includes many maps made especially for video to keep the viewer informed and to help paint the big picture. We bring the former Pennsylvania Railroad's Pittsburg line, from Altoona to Cresson in 1988 to 1992, with all the intense action, grades and helpers. The line east of Altoona brings more action from the late 1980s and 1996. See a great mix of manifest freight and intermodal trains in many scenic locations. Then, don?t miss the Harrisburg to Reading scenes on Conrail's former Reading Railroad line. Consolidated Rail saved the northeastern railroad industry by lifting 6 bankrupt roads from an ash heap - albeit a colorful one - with lots of work and an identity of its own making.
(2011) 2 hrs 20 min

CSX Scrapbook

This material was primarily shot in 1999 to 2001 with other scenes from 1991 to 1993. The various chapters bring portions of Ohio with the diamond crossings of Deshler (“Crossroads of the B&O”) and Fostoria (“The Iron Triangle). The program then moves east to the Cumberland Subdivision from Point of Rocks west to Cumberland, MD and then more gripping action on the famous Sand Patch grade. This is all color, digitally enhanced material, shot in many seasons. It brings you a lot of great action with helpers, long trains and road power from a colorful era on CSX. Some of the locomotive types have since been retired such as the C30-7s. Many maps have been made for this video to give the viewer a full presentation. See the last days of the old Color-Position signals in many locations and the installation of the newer signals. This is a 1 hour and 42 minute video bringing lots of great railroading. An additional section has a preview of the “Mountain Grades of the B&O” video.
1 hr 42 min

Diesel Power on the Santa Fe 1965 - ’85

The late-great Santa Fe as shot on movie film. From Chicago to LA, up to Stockton and out to Richmond. All the early diesels and the second generation power too. Both passenger & freight. Enjoy the Santa’s various “Chiefs” and the speedy San Diegan. See street-running and yards. Remember the Super-C and the “Chief” at their best. Remember all the EMD F-units, ALCOs, U-boats and Geeps and many special units. This is action and history at its best. Tehachapi, Cajon Pass, Barstow, passenger trains down to San Diego as well as action at LAUPT -- and more! To quote Model Railroad News magazine, “Charles Smiley Presents gives a masterful 61 minutes of historical information and delightful visual images. All in all, this is simply a wonderful video”. And, quoting Trains Magazine, “The careful editing (and excellent maps and graphics) do justice to the subject. This is a fine tape and one that will appeal to the Santa Fe’s many devoted fans”.
The Cast:
• GP20, GP30 & GP35
• SD24, SD26 & SD45
• CF7, FP45 & F-units
• U-boats & cabooses at all the great hot-spots
Special sections on the F-units, Cowl units, Super-c and ALCO power.
90 min

Diesel Power on the Southern Pacific

Great material from 19 sources shot in many locations out west. See FM and ALCO and many rare SP units. This brings the 1942 to 1975 era on the SP with E, F units and early GP9 and SD9 power. Don’t miss out on the first U- boats. These GE locomotives had some problems. But GE eventually worked their way to the top of the locomotive business by pecking away at EMD. See the greater San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles environs, Glendale’s old Taylor Yard, Colton Crossing, and many extinct branchlines. See the opening of the new Colton Yard and the building and early days of the Cajon Pass line for the SP and its bypass of Los Angeles for north-south through-traffic. Passenger and freight trains abound. Special Shasta, Cascade and even Kaiser ore trains from Iron Mountain near the Salton Sea - plus great and extensive Cajon Pass and Tehachapi action and much more. This is a wealth of vintage SP material – all shot on vintage movie film by former SP employees and many, very savvy railfans. To quote Railfan & Railroad magazine, “….the quality and depth of the information in the narration is so great. A must for SP fans I would think, as well as students of motive power evolution, use and disposition.” To quote a review in Model Railroad News, “Smiley, as usual, pulls from unfathomable depths of footage to locate and select delightful pearls of 8 and 16mm footage."
Some Locations:
• Oakland and San Jose
• San Joaquin Line
• Cajon Pass 1967
• Tehachapi 1955-1971
• Los Angeles area
• Taylor Yard 1965
• Colton Crossing
• Kaiser ore at Ferrum
• Santa Paula Branch
• Burbank Branch
• Cascade and Shasta
And much more...
103 min

Donner Pass Thunder

From old Sacramento to Reno, Nevada we present the any challenges of the Sierra crossing. Filmed over three decades in all types of weather and every type of train from 1955 to 1995. Ride a F7 powered passenger train in a raging snow storm. See early diesel power and the history of the line’s building, the snow sheds, tunnels and more. Visit the old pre-merger Roseville humpyard and see a wonderful mix of old SD and GP “high-hood” power. Donner Pass was America’s first line into California and we cover the politics, engineering and construction of this historic line. The last years of the SP are also covered with great action with the “Tunnel motors” built to cope with the extensive, long tunnels and snow sheds. Expect long trains, lots of helper units and foreign power mixed in.
90 min

Electric Rails Around The Bay

Three electric lines in one video. The Sacramento Northern, SP Red Trains and the Peninsular Ry. We bring the SP ferry boats on the San Francisco Bay as well. This 1910 to 1957 history has been a favorite of rail-fans and historians. Our scenes in Oakland, Berkeley and the Oakland Hills plus Sacramento Northern lines out to Contra Costa County are the essential Eastbay of a by-gone era. See the SN’s ferryboat that linked the south-end to the north-end carrying entire trains, both passenger and freight, from Chips to Mallard. The Sacramento Northern freight trains and the interchange with the electric Oakland terminal line at 40th & Shafter yard may very well be the best ever! Follow several freights through the Oaklnad Hills, Montclair, the long tunnel and through Redwood Canyon to Moraga. From there we run out to Walnut Creek, Concord and the “subway” crossing under Santa Fe and SP tracks. To quote a review in Railfan & Railroad magazine, “The 16mm film used in this program was shot by almost 20 photographers and ranges from very-good to excellent. This is another excellent and highly educational program from this producer….” To quote a review in Model Railroad News, “He takes old 8 and 16mm film and spins it into gold….If you’re not already a traction fan, this video may push you over the edge!”
67 min

Electric Rails of Utah

Utah’s four major interurban lines come back to life in this special video. See the splendid Bamberger RR, classic interurban Salt Lake & Utah, the lengthy Utah Idaho Central and the famous Saltair lines of the “Garfield, Salt Lake & Western”, -- as well as the entertaining, and famous, Salt-Air Pavilion. This was one of the earliest western “theme-parks”-- that met with Utah’s values and provided local-folk with a good time and wholesome fun. Both passenger and freight operation from the 20s to the 50s. Also, the little streetcars in the cities of the region and an early and continuing theme-park (built by the Bamberger line) of importance out west are special topics. Don’t miss the huge Bingham Canyon, open-pit copper mine and their electric trains in detail. It’s the largest mine of its type on planet-Earth! The Bingham Canyon mine operation was so large that it could actually be seen from outer space as a significant topological feature from the Space Station! We bring the culture, history and rail lines and industrious-ways of the people of the Greater Salt Lake Region. To quote Railfan & Railroad magazine, “a very PBS-quality presentation"
66 min

Empire of the North; The Forming of Burlington Northern

See the historic 1970 formation of Burlington Northern. See great vintage trains of Great Northern, Northern Pacific, Chicago Burlington & Quincy and the Spokane Portland & Seattle from the 50s into the 70s. We bring the history of the “James Hill Lines” and how he reshaped the northwest. See the steam to early diesel transition of these lines. Follow the career of Chicago Burlington & Quincy’s, Ralph Budd. His early years as a design engineer made him one of the industry’s greatest innovators. He was the youngest railroad president when earlier he took charge of the GN as he was also a sharp businessman. Follow the early passenger Ralph Budd-inspired Zephyrs, the California Zephyr plus passenger and freight trains of the CB&Q, GN and NP. Visit Chicago, Iowa, Montana, Idaho, Oregon, Washington and more locations with passenger and freight. We offer a special section of the “Inside Gateway” line jointly operated by the BN & WP. To quote Model Railroad News, “The story is epic... plan to watch it several times...”. To quote Railfan & Railroad, “This program, as all others Smiley has done, Contains a wealth of content requiring more than one sitting to digest fully. The maps are excellent, the corporate story-telling first rate.
Including coverage of
• Inside Gateway
• Chicago Area
• Iowa
• Washington
• Oregon
• Montana
• Idaho
91 min

ESPEE Hall of Fame

Visit "Espee" locations that were in and around Sacramento,CA in the early 1990s. See Elvas and Stockton Junctionwith the towers that have long ago been removed. Watch hours of great, original Southern Pacific power that has sent to the scrap yard since this material was shot. Learn much of the history of the SP and the area involved in this video. The emphasis here is on manifest trains, transfer jobs and locals. We bring the kind of railroading that has been forgotten. See Davis and Suisun-Fairfield Junction and many trainson the Ione branch. Don't miss the sugar beets to Woodland, California. This video took years to shoot with nearly every scene in blue skies and with the sun's light on the right side of the train. The trains shown have been selected with care to tell a story and portray how things once were. After watching this video, you should have a better understanding of what happened to the "Espee" - and why it happened. See Roseville's original hump yard in action and the parade of trains through Roseville, Antelope and out to the East Valley line, lower Donner Pass and much more.

91 min

Extreme S.P.

See the SP battle back to respectability in the early 90s. The aborted merger with the Santa Fe during the 1980s left both lines greatly weakened and the SP seemed to be the worst victim. Both lines made heroic turn-arounds but this story is how the SP pulled it off. The Extreme part of the title isn’t kidding. The location covered are the toughest places the SP had to grapple with. We feature many specially created maps and graphical grade profiles to bring greater understanding of these lines. Lines to the north, Cascade and Shasta, Donner Pass, and rare Modoc Line views. The Modoc Line is another example of a Union Pacific “redundant-reject” in their plans -- once they captured the SP property as their own. Many choice scenes from hundreds of hours of material to show the great variety of SP power and scenic locations. Some of the material is from early 1970’s film to round out the presentation. Don’t miss the great snow fighting on the Donner Pass Line. Cabooses and a parade of great SP power! To Quote a review in Trains magazine, “The locations are well-chosen and the camera-work is “tack-sharp”. The Modoc segment makes extensive use of maps, including grade profiles, and captions….”
• Modoc Line
• Shasta Line
• Donner Line
• Snow Fighting
• Cascade Line
1 hr & 52 min.

Key System Empire & Golden Gate Treasure

Key System action and Bay history with pre and post Bay Bridge views. See Bridge units and the old street cars. Ferry and Bay Area history. The 1939 World’s Fair views and the “elephant-trains” concession run by Key employees there is a special and rare view of Bay Area history! The Key System’s switch from their old ferryboat pier to the Bay Bridge are the historical items that everyone needs to experience. See how the Bay Bridge “NX” signal system and the expansive Bridge Yard was developed. We cover the “insiders” view of this great line. And, we chronicle the end, and destruction, of this inspired interurban line. This sad ending was something that Charles Smiley himself took note of as a junior high school student while living in the area. This video is a reflection of his early-life experience and impressions of electric railroading. Note: also see D-131 for even more, fresh Key System material! To quote a review in Model Railroad News, “Charles Smiley gives us a masterful 61 minutes of historical information and delightful visual images”.
61 min.

Key System Scrapbook; PT. 1

The Key System from the early years of 500s and 600s plus the ferryboat pier. See the Key’s new bridge units in their original, striking, orange and silver splendor. Also we bring supporting scenes of the IER Red Trains, Muni Railway, steam trains and the Key’s small streetcars. Ride and watch beautiful ferryboats shot on some of the first, early 16mm color film. Watch the construction and operation of the WWII Richmond Shipyard Railway by Key’s staff. This line was built from Emeryville north to Richmond’s Kaiser Shipyards to transport thousands of workers that built 747 Victory and Liberty ships for the war. Retired IRT elevated cars were rebuilt to make long, and elderly, electric trains. This is a fascinating look at Bay Area history. Don’t miss the Key’s X-trains and ferryboats to the 1939 Golden Gate Expo. This video has many animated graphical maps made just for video clarity and better understanding of the Key’s lines, streetcar lines and the competing SP-IER electric lines in the ferry, and the later bridge era. Great synchronized sound and period music too!
62 min.

Key System Scrapbook; PT. 2

See the Key System forward from 1945 and the end of WW II that brought the National City Lines 'buy-out'. See the last 13 years of a great transit line that struggled to maintain quality service in a world of change. We review the NCL and compare its new control of the Key System to the LA Railway and others. See the last few years of the Key's subsidiary streetcar lines that were all ripped out after 1948. Visit the Transbay Terminal in San Francisco and ride the Bay Bridge. Visit and ride through the Bridge Yard and recall the Key's great fleet of Bridge Units connecting the greater East Bay with San Francisco. Run through the Emeryville Yard and watch trains spill past Tower Two. See great trains in a wealth of locations in a bygone era on all the Bridge Lines A through F. Don't miss the action with freight trains down 40th Street from Sacramento Northern's connection to the C Line and the Oakland Terminal Railway. The F Line's "City Of Berkeley" Key train of former SN Ry cars is just one of the delights to see on the Berkeley Line. Watch the stunning B Line trains around Lake Merritt and on up to Underhill. The C Line to Piedmont and Oakland Avenue offers the beauty of the East Bay. Sixteen people shot film that made this video possible for you to see! Their efforts allow us to relive those wonderful days. The Key has now been gone for 50-years! To quote Model Railroad News magazine, “This is a large helping of trains at 1 hour and 42 minutes. As usual, Charles Smiley gives us a lot to enjoy. He still operates the premiere video recovery system around and gives us footage that has been cleaned up, brightened, sharpened and smoothly edited.
66 min.

Milwaukee Road Scrapebook

See the Milwaukee Road’s “electrification” on the old Pacific Extension. Remember the “Quills”, Bipolars, GE Boxcabs and GE “Joes”. Additional coverage includes the Milwaukee Road’s diesels and a nice review of Milwaukee Road’s steam powered trains. This is Milwaukee Road’s passenger and freight operations in its finest years. We also bring a good section on snow fighting, MOW equipment and practices as well as the frequent wrecks that kept the MOW people far too busy in the unfortunate years of decline. But overall, the Milwaukee Road’s employees always came through in the best tradition of tough and dedicated mountain railroaders. Don’t miss the comparative electrics on the Great Northern and the BA&P add to the history and scenic views. The copper ore trains that the BA&P actually preceded the Milwaukee’s own electrification. The original electrified BA&P paved the way for Milwaukee’s plans and gave them the impetus to “go electric” -- in many ways. See highlights of rival Northern Pacific and more Great Northern regional competition of their own specialized electric trains – and, their steam and diesel power. This video features mostly 16mm, beautiful, color film that captures the essence of the Milwaukee Road’s Pacific “extension” to Seattle and Tacoma, Washington. This is a fine history of the great Pacific Northwest -- and railroad history in general. To quote Model Railroad News, “Once again, Charles Smiley’s ‘magic’ resurrects old footage and combines it into a powerful story”.
74 min.

Mountain Grades of the B&O

This material was shot in 1983, 1989 and 1991 with a mix of video and color movie-film dating back to 1969. See a colorful mix of power and a style of railroading that is vanished forever. The Mountain Subdivision brings the last Western Maryland units in service. CSX fans will also see the early color schemes. Chessie fans will see lots of "tri-color" power. Additional color comes from several CSX liveries from the 1991-era. The history of mergers of C&O, B&O, WM and Seaboard Lines up to the CSXT formation is reviewed. Early film presents B&O, C&O and L&N power plus vignettes of Western Maryland and the small WVN Railroads. See lots of Seaboard and Family Lines power mixed with B&O, Chessie System and CSX colors in big power 'lash-ups' with helpers and meets. The "Cranberry" grade of the Mountain Subdivision, and the Sand Patch grade of the Keystone Subdivision with its beautiful scenery, small towns and great trains are a special visual experience. This is all color, digitally enhanced material, shot in many seasons by Tom Luckey. It brings you a lot of great action with helpers and heavy grades. Many maps have been made for this video to give the viewer a full presentation. These are views back in time with the old Color-Position signals, towers and lots of great railroading that could only be found on the old B&O mountain grades!
1 hr & 33 min.

Northeast Rails Remembered

Brought back from 1988 and 1989 is the Conrail story with material never before released. Conrail's former Reading line, Allentown, Reading and numerous scenic places through many small towns and splendid countryside. The scenic Southern Tier on the former Erie mainline brings lots of action with Conrail, NYS&W and Delaware & Hudson trains - and more! See some scenes from the early 1970s with a struggling Penn Central and its collection of old and eclectic diesels. Learn the Conrail story that saved the rail industry by merging many failed roads into a first-class operation. Conrail was split up into parts of the NS and the CSX system in 1999. We bring it back to your screen! See a great variety of diesel power and freight cars before the graffiti era. The 1988-era was at the point in time when Conrail had transformed itself into a successful railroad. This material was shot over a two year period of time, in all seasons. It was shot by videographer, Tom Luckey in a professional video format. It has been digitized, image enhanced and edited to bring you a look at many things you miss, but can no longer see.
1 hr & 40 min.

Northeast Rails Remembered II

Revisit the early 1990s on the last years of the D&H and the ushering in of CP Rail to new territory in the US. This was a very colorful era in the Northeast and dramatic changes were still in effect from ripples of the bankruptcy of the old Penn Central days. We cover the history of the D&H and its sad demise. Don't miss the parade of older and borrowed power that came from all over North America. This was also a time when CP Rail was consolidating its extensive US-based rail lines. We bring you power from the D&H, Soo Lines and from lines such as CSX, NS, Conrail, leasing companies and others. This material was shot over an extensive period of time, in different seasons and numerous locals. This new video is the perfect companion to the first Northeast Rails DVD that covered the success of the Conrail in the late 1980s. Revel in wonderful scenery, colorful power, "Fallen-Flags" and graffiti-free trains in a by-gone era that will never come back again.
1 hr & 33 min.

Santa Fe Vintage West

The Santa Fe from the 50s to the end in the 1993 era. Lots of passenger F-unit trains and freight with many paint colors. See the speedy “Super-C” freights that redefined the rail-freight industry - as it was run like a premium express passenger train. This is Tehachapi, Cajon Pass, the Los Angeles Area and the Bay Area at its best. The Needles Subdivision and Stockton Junction round out the action in this tribute to the Santa Fe’s various generations of the “Warbonnets”. To quote Model Railroad News, “I can’t think of a better way to spend an hour and a half...” To quote Railfan & Railroad magazine, “This prolific producer, specializing in high-quality, well researched and narrated, mostly vintage movie programs of operations mostly in the Golden State has brought back to life the evolution of Santa Fe diesel motive power… Fans of the Santa Fe’s classic diesel era and the various incarnation of its locomotive paint schemes should find this program to be enjoyable, and likely required viewing.
94 min.

Scarlet and Gray Memories

This is a final look at SP’s California Coastline and related branchlines. Heavy action on the Tehachapi Line and Bakersfield Yard, with views back in 1971 and in 1993 as a comparison. This is a wealth of early SP power including the memorable ALCOs and old U-boats. See Beet Trains, Coal Drags, Mixed Freight and the “Oil Can” trains. See the Coastline for a final-look at “locals”, heavy mainline freight trains and many of its famous branchline operations. We bring lots of great branchline action in many California scenic and quaint locations. This was the SP we all came to love! Don’t miss out on the real Southern Pacific!
100 min.

Soldier Summit Reflections

See vintage black and orange Rio Grande action and rare film of the RSD and “Alligator” ALCOs of the Utah Railway. Both the Rio Grande and the Utah Railway had a long history of hauling massive coal trains over the summit. These trains generally had helper sets of six or seven six-axle diesels to provide enough force to tackle the 2-percent grades and twisting curves. We bring all of this from many locations that often needed a good hike to reach. We visit several coal load-out facilities as guests and learn quite a bit of how efforts are made to keep this business clean and safe. This is quite a contrast to the old days and how the industry is perceived. The scenery is impressive. And it’s even more enjoyable to railfans, as this busy line has two main tracks -- and in some places, three tracks. Nothing could highlight the scenery like the passenger trains of the Rio Grande with their orange and silver F-units and glittering, domed, stainless-steel passenger equipment. Ride the Rio Grande Zephyr when the Rio Grande kept its passenger train while almost every other railroad threw their trains into the Amtrak nationwide system. See many stations, meets with freights and lots of Zephyr run-by action in the beautiful Wasatch Range. Learn the region’s history and the changes in the late 1990s. Heavy power, steep grades and massive helper sets were the rule. Watch Rio Grande, SP and finally UP power take over. Also, trackage-rights BNSF trains. We were fortunate to have been the guests of the Utah Railway and their facilities. Visit yards and shops and enjoy their new business of handling general freight. We show the rise of the Utah Railway to new heights. To quote Model Railroad News magazine, “This is an interesting of images, and anyone who is a certified Rio Grande fan will want to watch it”.
• Color film from M.A. 'Bo" Golson
• Vintage Rio Grande and ALCos film
• Ride the Rio Grande Zephyr with runby action
• Comprehensive Rio Grande power guide
• Rumbling helper power on fierce 2.4% grades
90 min.

Southern Pacific By The Bay
A Thirty Year Look

See the SP “commutes” on the Peninsula in late steam and early diesel days. Visit the old Third & Townsend Station where the SP Coastline really begins. Don’t miss the FM Train Master era, including the smaller FM H-12-44 switchers in various San Francisco Peninsula yards – such as the extinct Bay Shore Yard. Learn the mechanical details of the FM opposed-piston diesel engines with animated cut-away graphics. At one time, there were plenty of freight trains on the SF Peninsula working their way around the fast and numerous SP commuter trains. The old 1920 Harriman type commuter coaches and the first bi-level are seen behind passenger GP9s, SD-9s and FM trainmasters. Newer power includes the powerful SDP45 machines and the smaller GP40Ps – even in 1976 Bi-Centennial colors! We bring lots of old ALCO, Baldwin, FM and early EMD power. And, we have that on vintage film. Also, we bring more freight action on the Eastbay side and visit the old W. Oakland Yard. See the ALCO switchers and older EMD switchers work the yard alongside the heavt road locomotives at the sand tower. Ride former SP passenger GP9 5623 down Oakland streets switching freight for the Oakland Terminal Railway, on former Key System tracks. The remaining freight on the San Francisco side of the Bay features more street running in the last years of any freight operation on the peninsula We work our way down to see some yard switching and freight run-throughs in Santa Clara Yard. We stop by the San Jose passenger station to see some local freights that we’ll follow out to the Permanente Plant on the Vasona branch. These locals use up to 3 locomotives to pull long, heavy trains of hoppers with a trailing caboose. There are many other surprises that you won’t soon forget.
90 min.

Southern Pacific Scrapbook

Pre-merger SP in Arizona and California. Main and branchline action with grades, helpers, manifest, oilcan, beet, “boxcar” and stack trains. See Gila and Lordsburg districts from the 80s and 90s with cabooses, lower quadrant semaphores and on-train footage. See Donner Pass, Cuesta and the Coastline, Beaumont Hill, Tehachapi, Stockton, Elvas Junction, Tucson, Santa Cruz branch, Ione branch, Lompoc (Whitehills) branch, and much more. Don’t miss Stockton Junction with SP, Santa Fe and UP trains pounding all the crossing diamonds with in the days when it featured three railroads and an interlocking tower as well. This video has a parade of power. Grades, helpers, manifest freights, locals and much more. Remember the real Southern Pacific in this railfan’s favorite SP video!
To quote Railfan & Railroad magazine, “This video includes some really cool SDP45 pace shots, cab ride footage, a lot of interesting camera angles and neat graphics….. all done in a fast pace editing style… This is a darn good video’. To quote a review in Model Railroad News, “Charles Smiley does his magic, rescuing rare footage from obscurity, cleaning, sharpening, and editing it until the final product just sparkles. His story seems to flow right on through and the narration gives watchers the answers to the questions which naturally occur to them."
Featuring: Arizona
• Lordsburg District
• Coastline
• Donner Line
• Great Branchline Action
• Stockton
• Beet Trains
• Oil Can Trains
• Santa Cruz Branch
• Ione Branch
Much more...
90 min.

SP Vintage West

This 1950 to 1978 feature brings the long-vanished SP visions out west. Cab-Forwards, early F-units and the snows on Donner Pass plus both sides of the beautiful Bay Area are in this video. See Tracy, Shasta, Colton, Sacramento, Tehachapi, Suisun Bay, Altamont Pass, Dunsmuir, Oakland, Berkeley, San Jose and much more. This is an interesting period of freight and passenger steam and early diesel power at its best! Don’t miss the Coast Daylight, San Joaquin Daylight, mail trains and “commutes” behind steam and early diesels. See diesels from the early tiger stripe, Daylight colors, black widow, and finally scarlet & gray. To quote a review in Railfan & Railroad magazine, “Twenty-six photographers contributed to this program which is skillfully edited and narrated. I highly recommend this as a quality program….”.
75 min.

Union Pacific Scrapbook

Marvel at the UP from the 50s to 1996. Lots of early diesels from many great locations. Both passenger and freight trains are featured in the pre- 1971 years. See Cajon Pass, Chicago, Wyoming, Afton Canyon, Cima Hill and much more. The older vintage UP power ranges from GP9s, GP30s, DD35 and DD40X models with a great variety of early and late GE units. This video also brings the C&NW as it was being folded into the expanding UP empire. See C&NW power in several paint schemes on home Chicago rails and far out west mixed into UP trains. More great action just after the UP took control of the SP. See UP trains on Tehachapi, Coast Line and Sunset Line.
1 hr & 42 min.

Union Pacific Vintage West

Visit eight states and see America’s original line that helped build the west. Filmed by 14 different people over decades. Learn about E. H. Harriman’s dramatic life and how he eventually put an empire together that resembles today’s merged UP line. Follow the Harriman 1900 era to modern times from the phase out of steam to first and second generation diesels. The focal period is from 1960 to 1980 with the onslaught of rail mergers. See steam GP9s, E and F-units, Turbines, DD35, DD40s, U50s, SD24 and SD45s and many others with passenger and freights. To quote S Gaugian magazine, “In Union Pacific Vintage West, we get a comprehensive overview of the Union Pacific’s history, motive power and operating style. Filmed by 14 different photographers, the footage is extensive and interesting. In all… a real treat”
98 min.


Western Pacific the Last Decade

WP diesels to the early 80s end of operation of the last major railroad built in the west! See the California Zephyr passenger trains, and mainline freights. Remember Oakland street-running, Stockton, Sacramento, the Feather River Canyon, the Nevada Desert and more. See the California Zephyr passenger trains, freight and many early EMD, ALCO Baldwin and early GE U-boats all over California. Learn the history of the Beckwourth Pass that was founded by the west’s toughest ‘mountain-man’, James Beckwourth. See how the Western Pacific under the leadership of Jay Gould’s son, George, carved out a niche right under Southern Pacific’s nose! It also took the vision and persistence of Arthur W. Keddie to make things unfold. History and great trains are in this all-vintage video. Don’t miss the “Final-Four” coverage of Western Pacific’s last operational F-units in Altamont Pass and other locations on the “San Jose-Turn”.
• Stockton
• San Jose 'Turn'
• Oakland Streets
• Desert Running
• The Canyon
• Cal Zephyr
• Early Diesels
• U-boats
NOTE - The DVD version has an extra 14-minutes of new Sacramento Northern material.
68 min.

Western Pacific Vintage West

See WP freight and passenger action like no previous video has ever provided. The 50s through the 1980 era are covered in lavish detail. See late-steam power and the early dieselization of the WP. The WP’s history is covered with many scenes that have previously escaped the screen -- until now! See the WP re-route and the purpose-built Oro Dam railroad used in building the dam. This section was from three different rail historians that captured what the others all missed as a monumental, and historic, event. Don’t miss the Feather River Canyon, and High-Line action in this historical video on the WP. See the WP rail ferry and Feather River Railway steam powered logging line that was one of the few sources of WP’s on-line traffic. One of WP’s properties was the plucky Sacramento Northern Railway that they bought in the late 1920s. We bring some great Sacramento Northern action shot by the historian, and prolific rail author, Harre Demoro in his teenage years. This is a wonderful look at Harre Demoro’s young and artistic dedication to Bay Area history. See the Western Pacific’s section of the California Zephyr trains, as operated from Oakland, California to Salt Lake City, Utah. Visit the CZ on-board, trackside and though yards and stations. Some of these rare scenes were shot by the well-known and respected photographer, John Illman. Other CZ scenes came from the late George Barnes who -- was also a well-known scratch-building model railroader of some marvelous O-gauge models. To quote a review in Model Railroad News, “Charles Smiley combines lavish footage and a fine script to tell. The story of this unusual little-big railroad… For long-time WP fans this is a labor of love.”
• California Zephyr
• Steam to Diesel
• FT to F7 Power
• Uboats and Geeps
• SN Electric Freight
• WP Rail Ferry
• Feather River Ry.
90 min.


Your Colorful Southern Pacific

This was the Southern Pacific at work on the Yuma District of the Sunset Route. The best material from our discontinued video, “Sunset Salute”, is combined with a wealth of newly discovered material to make this new DVD video. See mixed freights and ‘intermodal’ trains as well as locals and transfer freights. We also bring lots of ‘foreign’ and pool-power. Visit the Imperial Valley lines to remember the Sugarbeet trains of the SP. Learn how the beet cars were loaded and follow the beets to Betteravia where they were processed at the Holly sugar plant. Beet trains handed off to the SMV Railroad at Guadalupe, CA are covered from the 1970s and 1992. And don’t miss a cab ride on the SP-owned Carriso Gorge line just before hurricane Kathleen closed it to through traffic in 1976. Featuring...
• Yuma AZ to Colton CA
• Desert beauty
• Beaumont Hill 1991 - 1995
• Helpers and Foreign Power
• Imperial Valley SA&E Ry. cab ride c. 1975
• Sugar Beet Trains c. 1992
• Beet loading and processing
• Betteravia Sugar Factory
• Santa Maria Valley Railroad
• SP Coastline action
To quote Model Railroad News magazine, “Well Charles Smiley has done it again …this is a very entertaining and informative video. You want stuff to model? It’s in here, though I can’t tell you what you’ll glom onto and turn into a feature on your layout. Maybe you’ll just watch this for an hour and 35 minutes instead of broadcast TV. What a thought!”
1 hr & 36 min.