Manuscript Group 422 HERBERT BROADBELT COLLECTION OF BALDWIN LOCOMOTIVE WORKS RECORDS 1890-1940
6 cubic feet
Herbert L. Broadbelt was an employee of the Baldwin Locomotive Works who collected these materials which include approximately 17,500 negative and positive photographs, 3,500 statistical cards, menus, drawings, leaflets, circulars, rosters and indices created for marketing locomotives.
The M.W. Baldwin Company was founded in Philadelphia 1831 as a jewelery firm and
later manufactured, in partnership with David Mason, bookbinder's tools and steam-driven
cylinders used for printing calico cloth. In 1883 Franklin Peale of the Philadelphia
Museum asked Baldwin to construct a miniature locomotive for exhibition at his
museum. The success of this model, and the subsequent construction of a full scale
locomotive for the Philadelphia, Germantown, & Norristown Railroad, led to further
requests for locomotives from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Reading Railroad
Company, and the Philadelphia & Trenton Railroad Company, among others. Baldwin
also constructed numerous engines for railways in Brazil, Uruguay, Mexico, Germany,
Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand. By the time construction was phased out
in the early 1950s, Baldwin had built more steam locomotives than any other institution
in the world. Late in the 1890s, in conjunction with Westinghouse Electrical Manufacturing
Company, Baldwin also built small electric locomotives for mining and industrial
use. By the mid-1920s, the company started experimenting with diesel engines,
and by 1939, was producing diesel electric locomotives. In the early 1950s, Baldwin
merged with the Lima-Hamilton Company and the Austin-Western Dump Car Company
and became the Baldwin-Lima-Hamilton Company which continued in operation until
The bulk of the records pertain to operations in the twentieth century and include bound books of photographs, locomotive specification drawings, correspondence, menus, histories of various railroads, leaflets, pamphlets, and specification note cards.
The collection is housed at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, 300 Gap Road,
Route 741 East, Strasburg, PA 17579 and inquiries should be directed to either
the Site Administrator or Curator at (717) 687-8628.