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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Merci Train Boxcars Historical Markers

Markers associated with the 1949 Merci Train, AKA the French Gratitude Train or the Forty and Eight, that were filled with French "gifts of gratitude" to the American people for their support during two world wars. One car went to each of the 48 states, with the remaining car shared by the District of Columbia and Hawaii.
 
Arizona Merci Train Marker (<i>wide view; marker on left; boxcar restoration plaque on right</i>) image, Touch for more information
By Cosmos Mariner, June 11, 2014
Arizona Merci Train Marker (wide view; marker on left; boxcar restoration plaque on right)
GEOGRAPHIC SORT
1Arizona (Maricopa County), Scottsdale — Merci Train BoxcarA Gift of Friendship
This boxcar is one of 49 that comprised the French Gratitude Train. Once filled with 50 tons of gifts, the Gratitude Train was a way for the people of France to say “Thank You” to the American people for their help during and after World . . . — Map (db m126700) HM WM
2Arkansas (Phillips County), Helena — Arkansas' Mercí Car
This boxcar and the gifts it carried are a reminder of American support of France during two world wars, and of France's gratitude for that support. Such gestures between peoples deserve a lasting place in our memories. People to People . . . — Map (db m107797) HM
3Delaware (Sussex County), Seaford — SC-94 — Forty & Eight Boxcar
This car is one of 49 given to the American people by the citizens of France in thanks for aid rendered during and after World War II. Utilized for hauling military cargo during two world wars, they were known for their complement of “forty . . . — Map (db m38658) HM
4Florida (Volusia County), Holly Hill — Merci Box CarLa Societe des Quarante Hommes et Huit Chevaux — Dedicated December 7, 1986 —
Merci Box Car — Arrived in America in 1949 — A token of appreciation from the people of France to the people of America — Built between 1872 and 1885 — They were called 40 and 8's, carried either 40 men or 8 horses . . . — Map (db m34796) HM
5Indiana (Allen County), Fort Wayne — Forty et Eight
Veterans Honor Degree of the American Legion
  • "BLACKJACK II" Locomotive / BOXCAR represents the Heritage of 40 ET8.
  • Origin is from WWI - France.
  • Organized in 1920 by Legionaires as the Fun-Honor . . . — Map (db m116314) WM
6Kansas (Ellis County), Hays — Merci Train Boxcar
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. The 40&8 boxcars, so named because of their capacity to hold either 40 men or 8 horses, transported . . . — Map (db m95638) HM
7Louisiana (East Baton Rouge Parish), Baton Rouge — Merci Train
The Louisiana box car of the Merci Train from France expressing the gratitude of that nation presented by Consul General Lionel Vasse to Governor Earl K. Long on February 22, 1949, in appreciation of the generosity of the American people. Dedicated . . . — Map (db m92828) WM
8Louisiana (East Baton Rouge Parish), Baton Rouge — Merci Train
The French military used boxcars called forty-and-eights to transport goods and soldiers, first in WWI and again in WWII. The boxcars could hold 40 men or 8 horses, hence the name. This is designated in French on the cars: 40 hommes, 8 . . . — Map (db m127004) HM
9Mississippi (Hinds County), Jackson — Merci Train MemorialHistory of the Merci Train — 40 & 8 Boxcar —
This boxcar is one of 49 gift-filled rail cars that composed the Merci Train, also known as the French Gratitude Train, sent to the American people in 1949 by the citizens of France. The gift of the Merci Train was a spontaneous act of gratitude for . . . — Map (db m96574) HM WM
10Missouri (Pettis County), Sedalia — The Merci Boxcar
This is an original French boxcar. The 40 Homme et 8 Chevaux painted on the ends means this car holds 40 men and 8 horses (or mules). The plaques represent the French provinces. American troops rode these boxcars to and from battle in WWI and . . . — Map (db m85073) HM WM
11New Hampshire (Hillsborough County), Manchester — Merci Box Car
This Box Car was a restoration project of the Grand Voiture du N.H. of the Forty and Eight. This Box Car is one of the 49 Freedom cars sent by the French Government to each one of the 48 states and one to be shared by District of Columbia and Hawaii . . . — Map (db m19825) HM
12North Dakota (Burleigh County), Bismarck — Boxcar used in the 1st World War
Presented by the French National Railroads to the State of North Dakota in gratitude for the help given to France by the American people — Map (db m44706) HM
13Pennsylvania (Lebanon County), Fort Indiantown Gap — 40 & 8 Boxcar
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 . . . — Map (db m12546) HM
14South Dakota (Beadle County), Huron — "French Boxcar"
This is one of the 49 boxcars from the "Gratitude Train" given to the United States by a grateful French people in response to the 700 car "Friendship Train" sent to France after World War II. Each state and the District of Columbia has received . . . — Map (db m112641) HM
15Utah (Weber County), Ogden — French BoxcarOgden Union Station
During World War I and II army troops were transported around France in trains. Troops were frequently loaded into boxcars which were boldly stenciled with their carrying capacity: “Hommes 40-Cheveaux 8” (40 men or 8 horses). The . . . — Map (db m81036) HM
 
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