This is a collection of streamliner railroad ephemera, photographs, prints and posters, most of which was produced in the
heyday of the American streamliner,
the late 1930s to 1955. Also included are items on early aerodynamic experiments of the 19th century; manufacturers and designers;
and foreign railroads, particularly in Europe.
Passenger brochures and photographs make up the bulk of the collection, with especially extensive files on Union Pacific;
Southern Pacific; New York Central;
Chicago, Burlington and Quincy; and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroads.
Mr. Leslie O. Merrill (1920-2009) was a life-long collector of streamline railroad materials. His interest began at age 14,
when the new "Pioneer Zephyr" streamliner
train passed through his hometown of Syracuse, New York, in 1934. He built his collection largely by writing and visiting
railroad headquarters, requesting and receiving the newest brochures and photographs. He also made his own photographs of
streamliner trains in travels all over the country, and sometimes purchased items. Professionally, Merrill was a director
of the San Mateo County Historical Association and Museum for several years in the 1960s-1970s. He died in 2009 in Santa Barbara,
Over 3,000 pieces of ephemera and photographs in 29 boxes + 165 prints and posters
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