John Bull


John Bull

The John Bull is America’s oldest surviving locomotive.  It was made by the English firm, Stephensons, for the Camden and Amboy Railroad in New Jersey, and assembled by Isaac Dripps in 1831.  Dripps furnished a pilot, running on an axle of its own in front, which both steadied the engine and saved it from derailment if it encountered a stray cow; hence the often used term cow catcher for a locomotive pilot.

And, just as interesting as the locomotive, is the classic bridge it ran over in the 1830s.  When we located the plans for the locomotive we also accidentally found the plans for this bridge, so we decided it would make a great presentation to build the bridge as well.  The bridge features individually spiked rails, tapered oak beams and stone abutments on either end.  The two bridge beams are brass and assembled just as the real beams were.

The John Bull and Bridge can be seen on display at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.  In addition, a working replica is operated by the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania in Strasburg.

John Bull

Scale:                            1:32

Release:                        1996

Limited Edition:             75

Price:                             $2,500 with bridge & display case/base

Model Size:                   19.5”L x 4”W x 9”H

Base Type:                    Black Walnut

Base/Case Size:           24”L x 7”W x 11”H

Availability:                    Available