Vintage & Modern Diesel Locomotives: Prime Movers of America book

A new book by Stanley Trzoniec
Vintage & Modern Diesel Locomotives: Prime Movers of America
by Stanley W. Trzoniec
Voyageur Press
Quarto Publishing Group USA Inc.
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400
Minneapolis MN 55401
11 1/4" x 8 3/4", hardbound, b&w and color photos
Price: $35
Vintage & Modern Diesel Locomotives is exactly what the title implies. This book is a survey of American diesels, principally from the post-war years to the present.

The book is divided into five chapters, one for each of the major US diesel-locomotive manufacturers. These include GM’s Electro-Motive Division, General Electric, The American Locomotive Company (Alco), Baldwin, and Fairbanks-Morse. Each chapter begins with a concise history of the company, detailing its development, place in the market, and products. This is followed by an extensive photo section, showing the company’s locomotives at work all over the country. As the title suggests, these photos include vintage shots (sometimes in black & white) as well as contemporary photos of the engines at work or rest. Extended captions complement each picture.

This book is not coffee-table fluff. Stanley Trzoniec is an experienced author who is knowledgeable about his subject. In addition to the excellent photographs, there’s a wealth of hard, well-written information about the locomotives and their manufacturers.

In reading the text, it is also not difficult to follow the decline in passenger traffic starting in the 1940s and the increasing dominance of freight traffic. Design emphasis shifted from sleek, graceful, and sexy to bigger, heavier, and more powerful.

The book is beautifully produced. It is hardbound with a dust jacket and the paper is heavy, coated stock. Photo reproduction (there are nearly 250 well-chosen photographs) is excellent in all cases. If you are a diesel fancier or would like to know a little more about the development of post-war locomotives in this country, this book is recommended.


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