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Hello Minton fans part 2


Within the Balboa Park ..the San Diego Model Train museum ...their library has many holdings of photos etc .

Searching their online library come up with the following listing plus additional photos..perhaps someone near San Diego can visit the library and post some images .


Envelope 1 containing: Note from Helen C. Chester regarding her father Minton Cronkhite; Minton Cronkhite Biographical Information; Press Release "San Diego, Minton Cronkhite and Model Railroading," SDMRM Presss Release January 16, 1991; Letter from Davide Brown Barrow Jr. to Steve Sidensticker (of SDMRM) with attached letter to David Barrow from Chet Taylor of the "Toluca Lines" regarding Minton Cronkhite; Article "Mr. Minton Cronkhite's San Marino - Santa Fe," The Modelmaker November 1934; Article pages "The Cronkhite O Gauge Systems," The Model Railroader, October, 1936; Article "San Francisco Exposition Makes Our Country Rail-Minded," The Model Railroader, March, 1938; Article "THe San Marino & Santa Fe," The Model Railroader, November, 1938; Article, "At the Golden Gate Fair," The Model Railroader, May, 1939; Page, Scale-Models, Inc. advertisement containing a picture of Minton Cronkhite,The Model Railroader, August, 1939; Article, "Santa Fe Model System," The Model Railroader," The Model Railroader, March 1941; Article, "Santa Fe Exhibit," Model Builder, November, 1941; Cover and page from the "Texas Centennial," Santa Fe Pamphlet from the 1936 Fail with a photograph of the Minton Cronkhite display; Page, "Pike Pic," from the NMRA Bulletin showing Minton Cronkhite's Santa Fe Exhibit at the San Francisco World's Fair; Article, "Engine 2351 run psgr extra west" featuring the Cambria & Black Moutain layout of Minton Cronkhite, Model Railroader, November, 1941; Article, "Our Display at San Diego Exposition Creates Exception Enthusiasm," featuring the Santa Fe Exhibit at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition, Santa Fe Magazine; Copies of Photographs taken by Clarence King and David Barrow on a visit to Cronkhite at his layout in Rancho Santa Fe in 1951; Ltr, Bill Cronkhite to Marty Young, President SDMDM, dtd 11/21/89 re return of Minton Cronkhite models to the family; Ltr, Bill Cronkhite to Steve Sidensticker, President SDMRM, dtd 1/03/90 re status of certain Cronkhite models that were in Jim Nemitz's possesion; Ltr, William G. Cronkhite to Steve Sidensticker, President SDMRM, dtd 1/25/90 re return of Cronkhite models by Max Schwanda, Jim Nemitz and Aylmer; Ltr, William G. Cronkhite to Steve Sidensticker, SDMRM dtd 3/15/91 re the opening of the Minton Cronkhite exhibit at the Musuem on March 9, 1991; Envelope marked "Sidensticker" on thefront containing some photographs and a letter from John H White to Mr. Sidensticker dtd 2/20/91 re a model of a PRR 4-4-0; Booklet, "The Museum & Santa Fe Railroad," Museum of Science & Industry, Chicago, IL, 1941;



3 mounted photos from 1905 and 1910 of sleeping car interior, Mount Washington NH station and NP train wreck; 2 mounted editorial cartoons about sleeping car accommodations and train wrecks (undated: probably late 1800s); article “The San Marino & Sante Fe” from Model Railroader (Nov. 1938); 4 b&w photos of Cronkhite’s layout by C. Tayloe (undated); 10 b&w photos of Cronkhite’s layout during construction by Barrow (1951); Letter of 4/1/99 from D. Barrow to J. Rotsart re missing Cronkhite photos; envelope with negatives labeled "Minton Cronkhite photos; Returned by Joe Cesare 9/18/10 JR"; article "Minton Cronkhite's Proto:48? Layout: Circa 1938" from The Proto Journal (4th Qtr: 1996); Twelve photocopied photos of Cronkhite's San Francisco and Chicago layouts from the Kansas Historical Society (donor and date not identified);


Cheers Carey


Hello Minton fans ..I know you are out there ..


Jan 1932  Minton is living out in California and penning a scale reality check with Mr Walthers ( check posting about Walthers attic for photos of his layout)  about his idea of traffic density on tiny railroads with layouts a mere 25'x15' .    Following Minton's logic would explain the vast open areas on his layouts ....   let the layout breath in mother nature ..nothing is something .

Cheers Carey

(no mention of Q gauge ...yet)

Fire at Minton's CT railroad .... so he headed west ....   he was President of the American Model Railroad Association (AMRA) in 1933 .... did AMRA .... become NMRA ? or ? 




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Hello Minton fans ...1937 seems to be the year "Q gauge"  --"O scale" hit the rails .   NMRA comes out with their standards August mention of Q gauge ...December update Q gauge is there ... NO Q SCALE. 

Minton is mentioned displaying a  Q gauge train ( Santa Fe Super Chief  in LA Nov 1937 .


1936 Minton is busy building a layout (or two ?) for the Texas Centennial   Santa Fe   and perhaps the Texas and Pacific ..both with outside 3rd rail .

Cheers Carey




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Here are some scans of the March 1941 article from Santa Fe magazine on the Cronkhite-designed layout at Chicago's Museum of Science & Industry. The original 1941 layout was rebuilt a number of times over the 60 or so years it was at the museum (it was replaced by an equally massive HO pike), and I saw it many times, starting in the 1970's when we lived in Hyde Park and would visit the museum frequently.

Santa Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 9 CronkhiteSanta Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 10 buildingsSanta Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 2 overviewSanta Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway cover

And here are photos of the Cronkhite Santa Fe train from the same era, now at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum:

Cronkhite models at SDMRM 3-29-08 P3290076Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120009Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120022 aCronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120023Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120025Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120026Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120027


Images (11)
  • Santa Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 9 Cronkhite
  • Santa Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 10 buildings
  • Santa Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway 2 overview
  • Santa Fe Magazine Mar41 Museum & Santa Fe Railway cover
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 3-29-08 P3290076
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120009
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120022 a
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120023
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120025
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120026
  • Cronkhite models at SDMRM 12-12-08 PC120027
Last edited by John Smatlak

Hello all 

Minton , Lobaugh , and Pomona  were all working together for the 1939 Santa Fe exhibit at Treasure Island  in SF.  There appears to have been a "group" effort to put the big exhibits together ...   the Santa Fe 1939  layout had the AB pulling the Pomona cars .... it was a big hit ..... so naturally Santa Fe wanted the same set to run in Chicago on the premier "permanent" layout  ...

Model railroaders then as now fall into various camps .... the "latest and greatest" ...and the "what was then movement"....  Lobaugh was all about steamers and freight cars .... so instead of bringing out a diesel and streamlined cars ...he offered the Pomona line in his 1941 catalog .   

Pomona pieces are lovely period examples ...scaled to 17/64ths ... and have a commanding presence.  

Judging by the huge numbers of Pomona pieces "not"seen today  they may have been priced out of reach for the average modeler ... and or most folks wanted heavy weights and steam . 

To see one of  Minton engines from 1934 in motion please see link


Attached pages from 1941 Lobaugh  catalog ..and Pomona catalog .. during the few year they were made the diesel noses changed (improved)  a bit .. the war put the halt to all production early in 42 war many other diesel and streamlined cars manufactures started up with various degrees of success... but Pomona seems to have vanished . 


Cheers Carey 122818103712281810391939 Treasure Island layoutMR 1939 


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  • 1939 Treasure Island layout
  • MR 1939

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