Joe, I visited Chester’s house and shop when I went to the 1975 TCA convention in Orlando. What a collection!
I had “O” & “G” layouts in the original store. When I built the new building, I designed it with six, 12’ wide show windows, each with an operating layout behind. Outside, there were concrete risers in front of each window, so kids could get a better look. In the corner, with a 12’ window on each side, there was a 20’ x 20’ “L” shaped LGB layout. In addition, I had LGB running on an elevated, wall mounted layout that ran the perimeter of the main showroom.
My wholesale company, Daylight Distributors, was the exclusive U.S. importer and distributor for Fleischmann HO & N, and I had lavish, factory built, Fleischmann HO & N display layouts in the store. At one time, there were a total of 8, fully landscaped layouts operating in the store, most operating multiple trains automatically.
Caboose Hobbies had me beat on raw, square footage, but when it came to presentation—without blowing my own whistle too much—I believe one would be hard pressed to come up with a store that was more beautifully appointed and interesting for your average person to visit.