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The Electric Pullman
A History of the Niles Car & Manufacturing Company
Published by: Indiana University Press
Entering an already crowded and established industry, the Niles Car & Manufacturing Company in Ohio began business with surprising success, producing well over 1,000 electric and steam railway cars—cars so durable they rarely needed to be replaced. That durability essentially put the company out of business, and it vanished from the scene as quickly as it had appeared, leaving little behind except its sturdy railway cars. The story of this highly regarded company spans just 16 years, from Niles's incorporation in 1901 to the abandonment of railway car production and sale of the property to a firm that would briefly build engine parts during World War I. Including unpublished photographs and rosters of railway cars produced by the company and still in existence in railroad museums, The Electric Pullman will appeal to railroad enthusiasts everywhere.
Lawrence A. Brough is a retired metallurgical engineer. He is a member of the Society of Automotive Historians and has written several articles on automotive history. He is author (with James H. Graebner) of From Small Town to Downtown: A History of the Jewett Car Company, 1893-1919 (IUP, 2004) and Autos on the Water.
"This book 'rounds out' IU Press's treatment of the car building industry with this account of the Niles Company and I can enthusiastically recommend publication."~Brian J. Cudahy, Railroad Historian and Adjunct Faculty, University of South Carolina, Beaufort
"Although not one of the major manufacturers in its field, the Niles company produced some notable and well-remembered equipment during the height of the electric interurban railway era. Indeed, among some interurban railway historians, Niles cars are sacred objects. As such, its story deserves to be told and theoretically would be a logical complement to IUP's books on the Brill and Jewett companies. Brough himself is a serious historian who knows his subject and has clearly mined all the sources that seem to exist."~Herbert H. Harwood, Jr., author of The Railroad that Never Was and The New York, Westchester & Boston Railway
"Electric Pullman is required reading for anyone interested in interurban history. It holds additional appeal for those interested in Ohio history or the junction point between business, society, and technology."~Lexington Quarterly
"This book is a highly informative three or four evening read."~The Villager