The Men Who Loved Trains

The Men Who Loved Trains

The Story of Men Who Battled Greed to Save an Ailing Industry
RushJr. Loving
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 09/11/2008
Format: Paperback 20 b&w photos
ISBN: 978-0-253-22031-8
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Winner, 2007 George Hilton Award

A saga about one of the oldest and most romantic enterprises in the land—America’s railroads—The Men Who Loved Trains introduces some of the most dynamic businessmen in America. Here are the chieftains who have run the railroads, including those who set about grabbing power and big salaries for themselves, and others who truly loved the industry.

As a journalist and associate editor of Fortune magazine who covered the demise of Penn Central and the creation of Conrail, Rush Loving often had a front row seat to the foibles and follies of this group of men. He uncovers intrigue, greed, lust for power, boardroom battles, and takeover wars and turns them into a page-turning story for readers.

Included is the story of how the chairman of CSX Corporation, who later became George W. Bush’s Treasury secretary, was inept as a manager but managed to make millions for himself while his company drifted in chaos. Men such as he were shy of scruples, yet there were also those who loved trains and railroading, and who played key roles in reshaping transportation in the northeastern United States. This book will delight not only the rail fan, but anyone interested in American business and history.

Author Bio

Rush Loving Jr. has written for Fortune, served as assistant director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Jimmy Carter, and worked as a consultant specializing in transportation economics, issues before Congress, and corporate communication problems. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.


“A saga about one of the oldest and most romantic enterprises in the land—America’s railroads—The Men Who Loved Trains introduces some of the most dynamic businessmen in America. Rush Loving uses interviews and personal experiences to tell the story of men who battled greed to save an ailing industry.”

“This absorbing book takes you on an entertaining ride through the train wars of the last 30 years. It is filled with intrigue and backbiting in the executive suites and with stories of how the railroaders got away with unbelievable waste—until it all caught up with them.”
 — William Neikirk, Chicago Tribune

“This fascinating volume by Rush Loving details the painful re-shaping process that the railroads in the northeast underwent over the past four decades.November - December 2008”
 — David J. Mrozek, Michigan Railfan

“The Men Who Loved Trains is a riveting morality story of intrigues, boardroom battles, corporate takeovers, and secret cabals aiming for control of a large part of America's transport system. A rare behind-the-scenes story of an epic battle over power and personal gain.”
 — Marshall Loeb, columnist for Dow Jones's MoneyWatch and former editor of Fortune and Money magazines

“The men who loved trains deserve a writer who loves them as well. This excellent book is a perfect match of subject and author.”
 — Carol Loomis, Fortune

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Table of Contents

1. The Forrest Gump of Railroading
2. Meeting the Blue-Eyed Jew from Minnesota
3. A Cabal at the Greenbrier
4. The Portly Virginia Gentleman
5. An Eleventh Hour Surprise
6. "Where the Hell Is Harrisburg?"
7. Cooking the Books
8. "That Telephone Man"
9. The Granddaddy of Enron
10. Some High Society Sex
11. "They Are Going to Run Out of Cash"
12. The Scandals Unfold
13. Booted Off the Property
14. A School Band on the Railroad Tracks
15. The Unsinkable Chief Wawatam
16. Donning the Mantle of Moses
17. Merging Railroads over Bourbon
18. Selling the Shiny Silver Sphere
19. "God Save Me from the Planners and Thinkers!"
20. Son of Penn Central
21. "Why the Hell Do We Need Four Tracks Out Here?"
22. Girding for Battle
23. "We Will Fight with Every Means at Our Disposal"
24. John Snow, CEO
25. A Catalog of Blunders
26. "I Think We Want to Be Seen as Somewhat Crazy"
27. In the Betrayal Suite
28. The Day the Horse Fell Down