Wilmington in New Castle County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Great Railroad Boom
reported about the car built for Henry M. Flagler, in Every Evening, Wilmington, January 4, 1887
Wilmington manufacturers found that the craftsmen who could fit out the interior of a luxury yacht or steamer could do equally well with railcars.
When Florida real estate developer and railroad baron Henry M. Flagler wished to have his own private railroad car built in 1886, he contracted with the Delaware Car Works of Jackson & Sharp. The car shown above, which he named The Rambler, contained a parlor, bedroom, dining room and kitchen. The restored car is displayed at Flagler's Palm Beach mansion, now the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum.
Entire new industries grew out of the demand for railroad equipment. Around 1830, Jonathan Bonney and Charles Bush began making machinery castings and railroad car wheels at Second and Lombard Streets. George Lobdell soon joined them and became the head of the firm called the Lobdell Car Wheel Company. In 1844 they moved to the banks of the Christina. By 1912 over 300 people worked at the
Composite view from the late 1800s of the Delaware Car Works of the Jackson & Sharp Company.
Bird's eye view of Pusey & Jones manufacturing facilities.
Composite view of the Lobdell Car Wheel Company founded in 1836. The company provided castings of all sizes and uses. They boasted in 1898 of an output of 500 car wheels per day.
Above: This interior view of a club car built by Harlan & Hollingsworth gives a hint of the beauty and luxury of some of the railcars built for late nineteenth century travel.
Erected by Riverfront Wilmington.
Location. 39° 44.17′ N, 75° 33.118′ W. Marker is in Wilmington, Delaware, in New Castle County. Marker is on Rosa Parks Drive east of South Market Street (Business U.S. 13), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 80 Rosa Parks Drive, Wilmington DE 19801, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Frank Furness Railroad District (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named The Great Railroad Boom (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Big Quarterly (about 300 feet away); Harriet Tubman (about 300 feet away); South Market Street Bridge Dedicated in Honor of Senator John E. Reilly, Sr. (about 600 feet away); Freedom Lost (about 600 feet away); a different marker also named The Great Railroad Boom (about 700 feet away); South Market Street Bridge (about 800 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Wilmington.
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on March 4, 2019. This page originally submitted on March 2, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 21 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 2, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.