Skip to main content

MrAllied: There's nothing wrong throwing a baseball term into your thread!  Wonder how many OGR members love baseball?  I was built 7-4-1946 in Dallas, TX and grew up loving baseball.  My grandfather loved to watch boxing on our 1951 Westinghouse TV.  Though I'd sit on his lap every week and watch the matches with him I didn't become a boxing fan.  I retain fond memories of flipping the pages of Sears Roebuck catalogs to check out the trains as well as the Ted Williams signature baseball items too!

If I'd had the $$$ and it were possible, I'd loved to tried to acquire the standard gauge collection that the late W. Graham Claytor Jr. possessed.  We became "pen pals" while he was president of Amtrak.  I was a passenger service rep with Deutsche Bundesbahn (German Federal Railways) at the time.  I still have the letters he wrote me plus the black and white professional glossy 8X10 signed photograph in my paper collection of trains stuff!  Regretfully, I lost the letters I exchanged with the late John W. Barriger III (then president of the Katy) while I was serving in Germany in the US Army Transportation Corps in the mid-60s.  He and Mr. Claytor were two of the best  20th Century railroad men in my opinion!

On the subject: I regret I didn't learn about McCoy standard gauge trains when they were introduced to the hobby.  I'm still in love with the jade green Great Northern set that featured Rocky the GN goat on the box cab electric and cars.  I still believe it remains one of the most beautiful modern day standard gauge sets produced to this day!  WOW!

Item: This is your thread MrAllied, so go ahead, do it your way!


Joseph Toth Jr.

Digatal Subscriber/Supporting Member

USATC Vet, 49th Transportation Group Germany, 1964-1967

Seventh Army European Command

I served with Pride!

Last edited by Trinity River Bottoms Boomer
@MrAllied posted:


Yes, it was so different and so exciting back then.   I was strongly opposed to the reproductions, as I felt they diluted the hobby.  When you saw a President’s Special at a show, you were just thrilled, knowing what a rare sight it was.  After my dear friend, George Sirus teamed up with Art Varney, to reproduce the PS and other AF & Ives 19” sets, it really changed things, at least in my eyes.  I even ended up owning a “one off,” Hamiltonian two-tone red President’s Special that George made just for me.  I had always commented on how AF should have made the set as pictured on the cover of the 1928 AF catalog, so George did one set for me.  That said, I wish none of the classic trains had ever been reproduced.

Ah, (in the voice of Raymond Burr) but did you not sell reproduction tinplate out of your store? Did not Tom Snyder purchase some of the reproductions from you and had heaps of fun running them? Does that not answer the question? 

By the by, I did very much enjoy visiting your store in the day. It was 'a must stop and see' when I was in LA. I still fondly recall buying some original Gilbert over the counter from you personally.

All in good fun.


Well, I was, still am and probably always will be a merchant.  Once the models were produced, what was I going to do?  Pretend they didn’t exist?  I had the kind of store where folks expected to see most everything that was available in toy trains and model railroading, so I dealt in the reproductions, I sure did.  Here’s a photo of the front counter, with reproduction standard gauge on display.  By the way, thank you for your patronage back then, it was most appreciated.



Images (1)
  • FA954318-A25A-4300-A6AE-5612661B9ACE

MrAllied, you made my day!  The photo of your front counter transported me back to Hall's Hobby House in Dallas.  I became close friends with Bobbye (Miss Hall as she was know to her regular customers) over the years.  Even after my move to Germany in late 76 we continued to exchange Christmas cards every year.  Her biography written with Tim Blackwell,  "Tracks from Texas to Tokyo" published by Cowcatcher Magazine, is a great read!

Thanks for sharing.


MrAllied, respect!  What a clean and well stocked shop it was indeed!  North America and Europe continue to loose these traditional shops where many model railroaders could "hang out and talk trains" with owners and regular customers alike.  Hall's remained open every Thursday (Thanksgiving excluded of course) until 8 PM.  Thursday was at one time when the stores in downtown Dallas remained open late so the ladies could shop and enjoy and evening on their own.

Bobbye was a natural born business woman and saw the advantage so did the same for the guys.  She always had a table full of trains and things on sale, often overstocked inventory, which for the most part was gone by the time she closed up the shop.  There was a coffee pot with fresh brewed java next to the Coke (Reg.U.S.Pat.Off.) machine and was always Free!

Sadly, all gone now, but happy memories remain just the same to this day.


Last edited by Trinity River Bottoms Boomer

Just thought I would mention that as of Wednesday, January 20th, the GG1 is listed for sale on eBay.  There are several additional photos posted there.  Thanks again to everyone who posted information here about these magnificent models and to those who contacted me by other means.  I received a wonderful education on the Gold Standard Engineering models and it is very much appreciated.

@Mallard4468 posted:

Worked in West LA for a few years in the mid 80s and would stop by the old store on Friday evenings to drool while waiting for traffic to thin out.  Visited the new store once while visiting - a great presentation.  Wish that stores like that could survive.

Well, by the mid 80’s, I had renamed Allied Models to Allied Model Trains, to define our specialty, and the store looked like this:



Images (1)
  • 2D0DE780-315C-47E4-B1FD-5FD391C90474

MrAllied, I'm not surprised one single bit that the GG1 didn't stay in your possession long enough to collect so much as even one partical of dust!

Thank you once again for posting the photos of your shop.  They enable me to take a sentimental journey back in time when I'd "hang out" at Bobbye Hall's Hobby House in Dallas, TX, as well as Chester 'The Most' Holley, in his shop and house in Tampa, FL.

Did you ever have an operating layout in your shop?  Neither Bobbye or Chester had one, although Chester did have an oval of G gauge track set up on top of the roof of his original train shop which was enshrined when he had a huge metal building erected over it.  Every Saturday, an LGB train could be seen operating around a large live steam size wooden Seaboard caboose which always attracted the customers and was a big hit with kids of all ages!

A shot of Chester's shop, taken from the roof of the original building, can be seen in OGR Run 119 on page 33 which featured Chester in an artical about the man and his collection of trains in all gauges which dated back to his childhood.  The title of the artical is Chester Holley's Childhood Dreams Last a Lifetime.  Page 34 shows Chester seated in his livingroom holding a passenger car from his first train, which was given to him by his father, shown in a black and white photo on the same page.


Add Reply

OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
Link copied to your clipboard.