Large Scale Central

How model towns get their names

Lake Inferior, or small guppy pond, got its name when our late cattle dog Mr. Otto took to cooling himself amidst the water hyacinth. This resulted in the name Haluku’ilio or Dog Wallo. Since his passing, our huskie-hound Opal has taken over the job of ensuring the town never loses the reason for its name! Today, I finally caught Loch Ness Opal on camera.

Silly fur-girl! She just did it again as we all prepare to bunk down for the night. Guess who got blamed?

Consider this a call for others whose railroads bear names based upon their pets’ antics!



That is too funny! :rofl:

My whole railroad is called the Babs River Railway, named after my best friend ever Babs the dog , she was was a Lab/ Collie mix , very intelligent dog that loved to fetch the paper every morning, open the door and she ran out , pounced on it like it was going to run away and bring it back. On walks she also pounced and brought back anyone else’s newspaper !!!

2 of my favorites of her, in the second she is not supposed to be on the bed but somehow we snuck in and caught her in the act. Only reason for not on the bed was a recent surgery and she was supposed to be taking it easy.

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My railroad is the Durango & Jasper. D&J

My wife was Donna and I’m Jim. Also D&J.

The town is Durango. Each kid has a building in the town. Kind of an ongoing tribute to her.


While no pets are involved in the names on my railroad, I came up with names I like. For most of the indoor, names were chosen from actual places near my favorite railroad in Pennsylvania; the EBT. Towns like Willow Hill, Kistler, Nook, Meadow Gap and Tyrone were all randomly chosen off a map because I liked the way they sounded.

Outdoors, places were named based on physical features - an idea stolen from Ric Golding and his famous town of Cat Dump! There is Deep Cut in a deep cut, Pine Summit where the grade crests over a pine root and Indian Hill Junction where the steep grade passes a statue of a native American. The town of Wall is atop a retaining wall and Northville is the northern terminus of track. And I can’t forget Coal Dump Curve named for a historic runaway wreck that sent several hoppers full of real crushed coal over the edge of the retaining wall to the abyss below.

One name, coined by my youngest when he was about 10, is Es-cap-e``.
Borrowed from Finding Nemo, it is the point at which the indoor escapes to the outside over two bridges - The East and West Es-cap-e` Bridge!

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John, yours has great imagination in the names , especially the Es-ca-pe’ however it’s printed out ,

I can’t take credit for that one. My son Matt borrowed it from the movie! I had to go re-watch it with closed captions on to learn the spelling!

Yeah when I read it first time , years ago it was during the time when grandkids were into movies like that so I got the reference then.
From the same movie ( IThink) I will someday have MineMine mine if I can find a suitable spot

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My small place, can’t call it a town, is a Flag Stop named Oliver. It was after my young grandson. It was based on Oliver on the North Fork of the Gunnison River in Colorado. This was because my my initial stock was Bachman ten wheelers and RGW stock. It was after I discovered Aristocraft locos and stock that the location was changed to Oliver in PA. My backyard looked nothing like CO, but I did have more of an appearance to PA, VA where my shortline was to run.

The towns on my outside layout are named for towns that are in the local area, as my shortline is based on the actual shortline of EVWR… My major outside town and the freight yards of Bluestone Southern is named Bluefield to represent where the Bluestone Southern got it’s name… Named one town on the Hilltop Subdivision as Overlook, as the town sits at the highest point on the railroad… The Bluestone Southern runs trackage to Evansville (the start of the shortline run) thru the hilltop Subdivision… Bluestone Southern also runs trackage on the Sparta subdivion to Memphis with Freeman Spur along that route…