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The Historic Railroad Buildings of Albuquerque Notes

An Assessment of Significance
Chris Wilson


1. Mere Simmons, Albuquerque: A Narrative History, (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1982), pp. 212227, 275; Charles Biebel, Making the Most of It: Public Works in Albuquerque During the Great Depression, 1929-1942, (Albuquerque: Albuquerque Museum, 1986), pp. 1-3; David Myrick, New Mexico’s Railroads, (Golden, Colorado: Colorado Railroad Museum, 1970), pp. 29, 34; Fourteenth Census of the U.S. Taken in the year 1920, “Manufactures, 1919,” (Washington D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1923), p. 963; Byron Johnson and Robert Dauner, Early Albuquerque, (Albuquerque; Albuquerque Journal / Museum, 1981), pp.77.79-83.

2.Keith Bryant Jr., History of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, (N.Y.: Macmillan, 1974), pp. 140-168.

3. Bryant, pp. 151-221; Charles Going, “Methods of the Santa Fe, Efficiency in the Manufacture of Transportation,” The Engineering Magazine, Part 1, 36, no. 6 (March, 1909), pp, 909-30, Part 3, 37, no. 2 (May 1909) pp. 225-48.

4. Bryant, pp. 106-122; Virginia Grattan, Mary Colter: Builder Upon the Red Earth, (Flagstaff, Arizona; Northland Press, 1980), pp.2O-58; David Gebhard, “Architecture and the Fred Harvey Houses: The Alvarado and La Fonda,” New Mexico Architecture, January-February, 1964, pp.18-25; John Stilgoe, Metropolitan Corridor: Railroads and the American Scene, (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983), p. 202; Robert Pounds, Santa Fe Depots, the Western Lines, (Dallas: Gachina Press, 198?), pp. 22-24.

5. “Curio Store Building,” five sheets of architectural plans, Topeka, February, 1912.

6. Bryant, pp. 171, 202-203; Going, Part 1, pp. 910-911; E.D. Worley, Iron Horses of the Santa Fe (Dallas: Southwest Railroad Historical Society, 1965), pp, 372.

7. Going, Part 3, p. 233.

8. Construction information for the Albuquerque shops comes from: “Great Work Being Done on Machine Shops,” Albuquerque Journal, March 14, 1915, Section 2, p, 5, cols. 1-7; “New Storehouse at Albuquerque, a Model of Efficiency,” Santa Fe (Employees) MeRezine, 9, no. 12 (November 1915), pp. 55-58; “Construction Notes,” Santa Fe Magazine, all issues from 7, no, 3 (February, 1913) through 9, no, 11 (October, 1915); Sanborn Map Company, “Sanborn Insurance Maps of Albuquerque, New Mexico,” 1919, 1924, 1931; Henry Bender Jr., The Albuquerque Shops of the Santa Fe,” The New Mexico Railroader, 6, no. 8 (August, 1964), pp. 1-7; C.F.W. Felt,

“Standard High Type Reinforced Concrete Engine House,” architectural plans, May, 1914; C.F.W, Felt, “Plans of 35 Stall Roundhouse at Albuquerque,” architectural plans, May 22, 1916; E,A. Harrison, “AT&SF Machine Shop, Albuquerque,” 17 sheets of architectural August:12, 1920; E.A. Harrison, “AT&SF Boiler Shop,” 10 sheets of architectural plans, Chicago, June 30, 1922; A.F. Robinson, ‘_’Tender Repair Shop,” structural plan, October, 1924; E.A. Aarrison, “Tender Repair Shop,” 3 sheets of architectural plans, Chicago, March, 1925. The conjecture that the new Topeka locomotive shops were built before those in Albuquerque is based on a photograph of the interior of the Topeka works in Joseph Snell and Don Wilson, Birth of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, (Topeka: Kansas State Historical Society, 1968), p. 60, which shows the tracks and the overhead crane aligned in same direction; this type of arrangement was often used before World War I, but was superseded in the 192Os industrial design by cross axial planning (i,e, tracks and cranes perpendicular to each other) which was employed at the main Albuquerque shops (1920-22). William Parr (Architect, Western Lines, Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway), Amarillo, Texas, interviewed July 28, 1986, stated that the shops at Cleburne, Texas were virtually identical to those at Albuquerque, therefore, my surmise that they were built about the same time. Bryant, p, 250, states that the San Bernardino shops were expanded in 1926.

9. See note 4 for construction information.

10. Stilgoe, p, 125; Reyner Banham, A Concrete Atlantis: U,S. Industrial Building and European Modern Architecture, (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1986), pp, 29,38-41,57,62,88; Grant Hildebrand, Designing for Industry; the Architecture of Albert Ahn, (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1974),pp. 31,92; Carl W, American Building Art: the Twentieth Century, (N,Y.: Oxford University Press, 1961), pp. 3-5; Johnson and Dauner, pp. 79,82,

11, Banham, pp. 39,54,92,104; Hildebrand, pp. 31,53-55,99; “Standardized Factory Buildings,” Factory and Industrial Management, 55 (April, 1918), pp. 329-330; J. Anderson Wyatt, “Building the Factory,” Harper’s Weekly, 55 (May 20, 1911), p. 16; O.D. Lee, Construction Features of the Watervliet Shops of the Delaware & Hudson Company,” Cassier’s Magazine, 41 (May, 1912), pp, 469-80.

12. Felt, “Standard Engine House;” Felt, “Roundhouse at Albuquerque Berg, pp, 166-175.

13. Cecil Alien, Modern Railways: Their Engineering, Equipment and Operation, (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood press, 1959), pp. 109-113; Welter Berg, Buildings and Structures of American Railroads, (N.Y,; Wiley & Sons, 1904),

pp. 51,166-167; Worley, pp. 41,44; Jerry Willaims and Paul Mcallister eds,, New Mexico in Maps, (Albuquerque UNM press, 1979), pp. 42-43.

14, Worley, pp. 41,44,46,49; Going, Part 3, pp. 232-33; “Hospitals for Disabled Locomotives,” Scientific-American Supplement, 88, no. 2290 (December 13, 1919), pp. 352-53+; Thaddeus Dayton, “The Graveyard of Old Engines, Harpers Weekly, 54, no. 30 (February 5, 1910), p. 30; H.B. Hening and E. Dana Johnson, Albuquerque, (Albuquerque; Press of the Albuquerque Morning Journal, 1908), 2 unnumbered pages on railroad shops; “Growth of Albuquerque is Paralleled by the Santa Fe Ry.” Albuquerque Progress, 10, no. 5 (June 1943), p, 9.

15, Rildebrand, p. 111.

16. Bilderand, p. 102-123; Harrison, “AT&SF Machine Shop, Albuquerque.”

17. Harrison, “AT&SF Boiler Shop.”

18. Hildebrand, p, 62; Banham, pp, 20,54,68,70; Stilgoe, p. 126. Photographs of the San Bernardino shops: Merle Armitage, The Railroads of America, (N.Y,: Duell, Sloan and Pearec-Little Brbwn,1952), pp. 114-115; Donald Duke and-Stan Gistler, Santa Fe: Steel Rails through California, (San Marine, Gal.: Golden West, 1963), p. 141.

19, E.A, Harrison, “New Fire Department Building,” 6 sheets of undated architectural plans, Chicago; Johnson and Dauner, p, 80,

20. Alien, pp 122-123,147-149; Worley, pp. 403-410; Myrick, pg 41; Bryant, pp. 249,310-317; Santa Fe Engineering Department, “Centralized Work Equipment Shop,” February, 1982.

21, “Manufactures, 1919,” pp. 961-65; Fourteenth Census of the U.S. Taken In the Year 1920, “Mines and Quarries,” (Washington DC,: Government Printing Office, 1923), vol. 11, p, 168; Fifteenth Census of the U.S., (Washington DC,: Government Printing Office, 1933, vol, 3, “Manufactures, 1929,” pp. 346-349, “Mines and Quarries,” p. 175.

22. Johnson and Dauner, pp. 62,85-93,

23, Williams and McAllister, pp. 42-43; “Chama: A Reminder of the Railroad Age,” La Cronica, no. 19 (August, 1984), pp.5-6.

24. Telephone interview with Welter Grey (Historian, California State Railroad Museum), July 16, 1986; Telephone interview with Jim Steely (Texas Historical Commission), July 16, 1986; Telephone interview with Tom Winters (California Office of Preservation), July 14, 1986; Telephone interview with Martha Hagadern (Kansas State historical Society), July 17, 1986; Telephone interview with Chris Psaffs (Colorado historic preservation office), July 15, 1986.


New Lego exhibit at the Wheels Museum. View The New Mexico Lego Users Group has
partnered with WHEELS to have a beautiful Lego Train layout for children of all ages to enjoy. The exhibit will vary from season to season and we invite you to come see this new Lego train exhibit.

January 8, 15, 22, 29 – Sunday morning admission free from 9 am-1 pm at the Albuquerque Museum and the City’s International Balloon Museum.

Do you have a few hours each month to help the Wheels Museum? Volunteers are needed so the Museum can be open more; run the model railroad trains, also help needed with events, marketing, fund raising. Call Leba Freed at (505) 243-6269.

Febuary 16, 11 am. Bob Bovee Long Steel Rails concert. This program for all ages presents songs and stories about the famous trains, rail workers, hobos, train wrecks and train robbers. Call or email Leba Freed for reservations at (505) 243-6269 or leba4@aol.com.

March 17, Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at WHEELS. Movie, tours, train ride and food celebration.

April 1, 1 pm. Doug Figgs and Badger. Back by popular demand. By reservations only (505) 243- 6269. Doug’s show was sold out last year, so call early! Donation: $10.00.

April 8, 11 am. “Historic Albuquerque” Ronn Perea will present old Albuquerque anecdotes including delightful stories about our beloved Alvarado Hotel and the politicians, actors and entertainers who stayed there. This is a free event but, of course, donations are always appreciated.

April 22, Wheels Museum Day trip to Rancho De Chimayo Restaurante, El Santuario de Chimayo and the Santa Fe Plaza. Call Leba or Janet at (505) 243-6269 for more information. The museum is a 501C3 non-profit community organization whose mission is to create a transportation museum at the downtown Albuquerque Steam Locomotive Repair Shops.

May 19-May 23, Train trip to the Grand Canyon. Only a few spaces left.Scheduled through Amtrak Vacations, call Leba or Janet at (505) 243-6269 for reservations and more information.