Thanks to everyone who has contributed so far.
I think an historically accurate, or approximately historically accurate, layout modeling The Put could be very appealing for the following reasons:
There were iron ore mines in Brewster, NY. Models of such mines could be on the The Put model railroad. Iron ore could be loaded in Lionel ore dump cars and gondolas there, using the Lionel 282 gantry crane.
There were dairy farms in Northern Westchester County, including such farms in Yorktown Heights, which had a station along The Put. Lionel operating milk cars with the milk platform could be included there, as well as the operating Icing Station. There was a Borden Milk plant in Mt. Vernon, NY in Southern Westchester, so a model of that milk plant could appear on the layout.
Pocantico Hills had a gorgeous Victorian style train Station on The Put. The Lionel Rico station with refinements could be a centerpiece on The Put layout.
Another very interesting thing to model on The Put layout would be The Bronx station. Near there one could have models of both Yankee Stadium in the Bronx and the Polo Grounds across the waterway in Manhattan. Passengers would be transferred at the Bronx Station from The Put to the NY Central to go to Grand Central Station.
Westchester County, where The Put was located, has beautiful scenery, with tree laden rolling hills and streams. Models of the Bronx River Parkway and Saw Mill River Parkway, which were built in the 1940s and 1950s, could be on the layout.
Small steam engines and a 44 ton center cab diesel would be included in the motive power. The Put had passenger and freight service, running relatively short trains. Extra wide loads of freight was a specialty of The Put.