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Road Name History:
The Atlantic Coast Line began its life like many classic fallen flags, put together and shaped through a series of mergers with small railroads. Its earliest predecessor was the Richmond & Petersburg chartered in 1836, and after linking with the Petersburg Railroad the two made a through connection from Richmond to North Carolina. Throughout the 1800s there were numerous smaller lines that would go on to form the ACL including the Wilmington & Weldon, Wilmington & Raleigh, and North Eastern which served points between South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia (including the ports of Wilmington, NC and Charleston, SC). The Coast Line itself would begin to take shape when all of these railroads came under the control of William Walters, a Baltimore investor. In the late 1800s these railroads would come under the holding company of the Atlantic Coast Line Company. The railroad?s growth would not end with the 1800s.
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In those days, railroad modelers had to assemble and build everything from scratch. Steve Jr. created a "switch kit" which sold so well, that the entire family worked on them in the basement at night, while doing business as usual in the machine shop during the day.
Subsequently, Steve Jr. engineered the stapling of rail to fiber track, along with inventing the first practical rail joiner and pre-assembled turnouts and flexible track. All of these products, and more, helped to popularize model railroading and assisted in the creation of a mass-market hobby. The budding entrepreneur quickly outgrew the limitations of a basement and small garage operation. Realizing they could actually make a living selling track and related products, Steve and his father had the first factory built in Hillside, New Jersey at 413 Florence Avenue in 1947. On September 30, 1949, the Atlas Tool Company was officially incorporated as a New Jersey company.
In 1985, Steve was honored posthumously for his inventions by the Model Railroad Industry Association and was inducted into the Model Railroad Industry Hall of Fame in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, Steve was nominated and entered into the National Model Railroad Association Pioneers of Model Railroading in 1995.
In the early 1990s, the Atlas Tool Company changed its name to Atlas Model Railroad Company, Inc.
Item created by: Bryan on 2016-07-12 16:01:58. Last edited by gdm on 2018-01-25 18:43:35
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