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David Parks
Cumberland West - Baltimore & Ohio, HO

The B&O in 1953 Cumberland, Maryland. The layout is single layer in a 1200 sq. ft. room with Mole staging. The backdrop, scenery and bridges are mostly complete. Coal is the local focus. The railroad has a Dispatcher, Stage Manager and Coal Manager. The Coal Manager works with the Dispatcher to regulate coal loads and empty hopper traffic.

The B&O includes the junction of the Pittsburgh and Cumberland Divisions and part of the West End Sub. The B&O is double track main with "Current of Traffic" rules using B&O 9 aspect Color Position Lights (CPL) signals. Five Tower Operators control interlocking sections. They use computer touch-screens to manipulate switches and signals with pseudo Standard Signal graphics. The B&O has many named passenger trains and some passenger switching in Cumberland. B&O coal mines are off-line. Operations center on the Keyser coal switching yard and a small manifest yard.

The railroad is a bridge line with an abundance of thru manifest traffic.

NCE-DCC and TCS is used for train control while LCC controls signals and accessories. Stage routing is controlled via computer screens. Car forwarding uses car cards and waybills for manifest freights. Coal and empty hoppers use multi-car coal orders. Communications is via a 1950s era 14 station multi-line phone system. Variable speed fast clock.

Here's a 10 minute video of the Western Maryland:

Here's a 45 Minute Video on the B&O in Cumberland in the style of a 1950s Documentary

More information can be found at

Schedule notes: plan to leave the hotel at 8:15 for a 10:00 AM start, David is about 20 minutes from San Jose Airport and 45 minutes from SFO for your Sunday Getaway.

Revised 4/17/2024