Penn Central

Penn Central

Revelation Video

Time period: 1968-1976

Format: VHS     Length: 76 minutes

Locations: Horseshoe Curve, Jamaica, Pittsburgh, Pittsfield, Kearny, Washington, Albany, Selkirk, Marion, Oak Harbor, Lima, Johnstown, Conway Yard, Syracuse… many more.


This is 8mm film. It has many color balance issues. Some are pretty bad, green skies or purple foliage and earth. General image quality, is below average. That’s too bad, because the story is pretty good. The trains are unlimited, in variety and overall scope.

The show is absolutely loaded with train video action. Freight trains galore. Passengers get plenty as well. Systemwide coverage. All seasons and all-weather.

The show does have surprises. Ride the TH&B, a cab ride in a PRR E8, another cab in the Keystone, passenger train rides,pacing locomotives. You never know when we hop aboard a passenger train, or are transported into the cab of a locomotive. They are brief visits.

Huge array of power. Many 1st generation EMD, Alcos and Electrics. Many GG1’s. in PC, PRR and Amtrak. some of the run thru power: CB&Q F units, SP, SCL GE, B&M GP9 and early Amtraks. Many trains sport unrepainted NYC and some as PRR. That would be in the earlier years, after the merger.

Pittsburgh, much shot at Federal St., and the surrounding area, get an extended visit. Very interesting feature set, with a ton of trains. Bonus, weathered B&O F units pull freight.

Outside of the many image quality issues, there are the multitude of shots and the sheer volume of trains. Narrator is giving info, as needed. He adds some color with some news clippings, and backstory of the time. A musical orchestra background, in lieu of live sound. While i wouldn’t recommend this as a 1st Penn Central tape; it may be for the completest only, or those that just want more. Face it, these images have passed into history.

Rating 2 1/2 Stars


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