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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Fort Indiantown Gap in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

40 & 8 Boxcar

 
 
40 & 8 Boxcar Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 20, 2008
1. 40 & 8 Boxcar Marker
Inscription. This 40 & 8 Boxcar is one of forty-nine cars that comprised the merci or gratitude train, a gift to the American people from the citizens of France. Pennsylvania received it at a ceremony in Harrisburg on February 6, 1949. All forty-eight states received a boxcar filled with gifts, ranging from humble offerings to priceless art and antiques. The District of Columbia and the Territory of Hawaii shared the forty-ninth car. Gifts of sacrifice from individuals conveyed each donor's depth of gratitude to America for liberating France in two world wars and for sending the friendship train, a $40 million food relief effort carried out by American volunteers in 1947, which saved many French citizens from starvation. The 40 & 8 boxcars, so named because of their capacity to hold either 40 men or 8 horses, transported soldiers and horses to and from French battlefields during WW I. Many WW II soldiers rode the boxcars as well. The merci train boxcars now stand as a tribute to sacrifices and bravery of American veterans who served in France in two world wars and as a symbol of friendship and gratitude between the people of the United States of America and the citizens of France.
 
Erected by Questers of Pennsylvania.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in
40 & 8 Boxcar Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 20, 2008
2. 40 & 8 Boxcar Marker
the Merci Train Boxcars marker series.
 
Location. 40° 25.922′ N, 76° 34.206′ W. Marker is in Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania, in Lebanon County. Marker is at the intersection of Fisher Avenue and Clement Avenue, on the right when traveling east on Fisher Avenue. Click for map. Located in the triangle formed at the intersection of the streets on Fort Indiantown Gap National Guard Training Facility. Marker is in this post office area: Annville PA 17003, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge (here, next to this marker); Saint-Avold Tribute to 3rd American Army (a few steps from this marker); 95th Infantry Division Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); M2/M59 Howitzer (within shouting distance of this marker); M915A1 Line Haul Tractor (within shouting distance of this marker); M578 LRV (within shouting distance of this marker); M42 Duster (within shouting distance of this marker); M110 Howitzer (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Fort Indiantown Gap.
 
Also see . . .  History of the Merci Boxcars. A history of the boxcars of the Merci Train. This particular site discusses the car given to Alabama. (Submitted on October 15, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
40 & 8 Boxcar image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 20, 2008
3. 40 & 8 Boxcar
 
 
Categories. War, ColdWar, World IWar, World II
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 3,699 times since then and 112 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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