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as may also desire to be a party to joint control," a step which would effectively neutralize C&EI for good. Just to make matters more confusing, IC itself continues to be interested in a merger with Морас.


[Astute Stuart T. Saunders of Norfolk & Western has used his coal hauler's good credit to knock down one more roadblock to his plan for unification of N&W, NKP, and Wabash. In exchange for having the smaller line withdraw its bid to join the big merger, N&W has offered to buy all the outstanding stock of Akron, Canton & Youngstown for 6.5 million dollars. The all-Ohio AC&Y operates 171 route-miles, owns 17 diesels and 1600 freight cars, has been in the black since 1938 and a dividend-payer since 1947, is very big in Akron (where it handles 35 to 40 per cent of all rail service), and is an important bridge-route connection for Nickel Plate.

The 841-mile Western Maryland is behaving more independently than its ownership would suggest. Baltimore & Ohio owns 42.85 per cent of WM's preferred and common stock; and Chesapeake & Ohio, hot after control of B&O, has purchased 14 per cent of WM common. Moreover, both C&O and B&O have announced that WM will be included in their long-range merger blueprints. However, WM President W. Arthor Grotz says his road is open to "any merger proposal." No reaction yet from Baltimore or Cleveland.

Merger is apparently a bad word on the New Frontier. The Justice Department is opposing Coast Line + Seaboard as well as control of Western Pacific by either Santa Fe or Southern Pacific.



R.I.P. FOR THE SOE: From May 27, 1962, some well-established European international named trains will either disappear or be drastically curtailed. Among them is, perhaps, one of the most famous - the

Simplon-Orient Express. The SOE becomes just the Simplon Express and will run only as far as Trieste. This is not much farther than the first Simplon Express, which started operation in 1906 between Paris and Venice, following the opening of the Simplon Tunnel. It was on April 15, 1919, that it commenced running as the Simplon-Orient Express and included through cars to Istanbul, Athens, and Bucharest. The creation of the SOE had a political motive because it was the Allied Governments at Versailles after World War I who plumped for a train which would link the Western powers and the Balkan states. Another train which also arose out of post-World War I political problems was the Arlberg Orient Express which came into being in 1922. Like the SOE, it will also be cut back (terminating at Vienna) and bear a revised name (just Arlberg Express).

A third express, the Tauern, serving eastern Europe (it first appeared in the timetables in 1953) will also cease operations in its present form. It will terminate at Klagenfurt in Austria. Two other trains the Tirol and Yugoslavia Expresses will also be discontinued.

The reasons for the discontinuance or change in these trains are basically economic. It does not pay to operate cars right across Europe when for part of their journey they may be lightly patronized and earning little revenue for their owners. Also, some of the long-distance named trains virtually degenerate into all-stations locals when they get into Eastern Europe.

To those who cherish riding the same car all the way from Paris to Istanbul or Athens there is a new train: the Direct Orient Express. This will depart, eastbound, from Paris at 11:50 p.m., be in Milan at lunch time the following day, call at Trieste in the evening, and pause at Belgrade at breakfast time on the third day. Fourth-day arrivals will be 10 a.m. for the Athens section and 1:20 p.m. for the Istanbul cars. A first-class WagonsLits will run to Athens three times a week and to Istanbul twice a week, so for the spies and mystery writers (not to mention railfans) all is not lost.

ON-TIME ELECTRICS: On October 2, 1961, Glasgow's blue-painted A.C. electrics started running again after an absence of nearly a year (they were withdrawn in 1960 after electrical troubles). After 53 days of operation British Railways' Scottish Region issued a progress report. In brief: the trains were running satisfactorily and maintaining a high standard of punctuality. Take Friday, October 13- an ominous date, but not for the "blue trains." Of the 326 trains running, 318 arrived on time, a punctuality figure of 97.6 per cent. The remaining trains were an average of

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WHAT'S this? Recently overhauled Burlington 2-8-2 No. 4960 (shown in Kansas City last fall) has cab signal equipment, apparently for use on Chicago-Aurora line.

NAWAITING shipment to National Railroad Museum at Green Bay, Wis., Chesapeake & Ohio 2-8-4 No. 2736 sits on side track in Waukegan, Ill., September 9, 1961. Fresh coat of paint goes on Santa Fe 4-8-4 No. 2903 before she's transported to Chicago to be displayed adjacent to original Burlington Zephyr at Museum of Science and Industry.

Authenticated News

MODERN 4-8-2+2-8-4 Garratts are mainstay of Benguela Railway in troubled Angola, but 838-mile African line now has diesel shifters.

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Theo Sommerkamp.

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