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The Well-Dressed Hobo: The Many Wondrous Adventures of a Man Who Loves Trains
Growing up in the bustling railroad town of Norfolk, Virginia, and joining his conductor grandfather on overnight runs, future Fortune journalist Rush Loving was enchanted with railroads at an early age. In this extraordinary inside look at eight decades of the railroad industry and some of its greatest leaders, Loving reminisces about his colorful people and fascinating a ...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published March 23rd 2016 by Indiana University Press
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Rush Loving Jr. is a man who has seen it all – at least as far as US railroad history in the second half of the 20th century is concerned. In The Well-Dressed Hobo, he recounts his career in journalism, government and consulting, following and sometimes taking part in the economic changes US railroads undertook after the second world war. His job and interest in the subject allowed Loving to be close to many major developments, from the creation of the ill-fated Penn Central through Conrails tee ...more
This book makes it apparent to me that Rush Loving, Jr. has a gift for storytelling. Lucky for we readers, Mr. Loving also writes in an easy to enjoy style that makes you feel a part of the camaraderie he found while riding on and discussing trains/railroads. He does not try to glamorize the life of active trainmen or hoboes (thanks for explaining that word was likely derived from "hoe-boys"-1890s itinerant farmhands), nor does he pull any punches when he describes the moneyed men behind the rai ...more
Like a fully-loaded coal train, this book is a slow starter. However, once I got past the first few chapters my interest level picked up considerably. Mr. Loving's decades of experiences with the movers and shakers of the railroad industry gives him a lot to talk about, all of it interesting. This book isn't quite as good as his earlier book, The Men Who Loved Trains, but it's worth reading for those of us interested in the railroading business.