Volume 24, Number 11 November, 2021 

As many of you know, I have been a Walt Disney fan since childhood.

Walt had a fascination with trains throughout his entire life and they were an important part of his legacy.

“To tell the truth, more things of importance happened to me in Marceline than have happened since - or are likely to in the future”. Walt Disney

Walt was introduced to trains at a very young age. He spent four (4) years of his childhood in Marceline, MO. This was a place with no outstanding features such as mountains, forests or rivers.

In 1887, the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway expanded their railroad from Kansas City, MO to Chicago. A location was needed where the railroad could change crews and take on water & fuel. They divided the distance between Kansas City and Chicago into thirds and the first location was about 100 miles northeast of Kansas City. This RR stop later would become known as the town of Marceline. This town had a profound impact on Walt and provided the inspiration for the film “Lady & The Tramp”. This small rail town was everything a young boy could want while growing up. Open fields, trees to climb, a swimming hole and trains!

“Main Street Marceline” would be the inspiration for the “Main Street” in Walt’s Theme Parks around the world.

Walt and his older brother, Roy, would watch as the big steam locomotives chugged slowly passed them with logos from various railroads and exotic places.

Walt’s Uncle Martin was an engineer on the Santa Fe and worked the route that included Marceline. Walt always looked forward to the time that his uncle spent sharing stories of his life experiences on the railroad.

Walt dreamed of one day becoming an engineer, but never realized that dream. He did, however, manage to work on the railroad. He became “Butcher Boy”, like his brother Roy; hired by the Missouri Pacific and assigned to the Commuter line that ran between Kansas City and Jefferson City. It was a great job for a boy as it provided some income and the opportunity to ride the train. It was really a good job for someone who had ambition and ability to sell. Right up Walt’s alley! “Butcher Boys” would ride the train with their wooden boxes and sell newspapers, books, candy, fruit, rolls, cigars and cigarettes.

(Continued on Page 3 in the newsletter)

Keep the Flowers Growing and the Trains Going.