The other day I was on YouTube and I just typed in "Elkhart, Indiana" (my home town, and where I live today) to see what would come up. I found videos on the city itself, but I also found a drone video of the Elkhart Train Yard.
My father was a rail roader. He started out working with New York Central then retired from Penn-Central in 1975. As a child thru my early 20's I was at the rail yards many times with my father. He was a conductor mainly on freight trains most of the time going to Blue Island (near Chicago). There was one time my twin brother and myself went on a short trip with my dad working the train but on a shorter route. He thought it would only last a couple hours, but as I remember it lasted much longer going into the night!
Oh this of course was still back in the day when the railroads still used cabooses!! That was fun riding a caboose! But I did get the wind knocked out of me one time when the train jerked violently.
My father also briefly worked as a conductor on passenger trains. I have his full uniform and two hats with New York Central and Penn-Central badges and buttons. A couple lanterns which a cool also And I have his rail road keys. The uniform is a very heavy wool outfit! I cannot imagine wearing that in the summer time!! Oh my gosh....
Here is the Drone video I found on Youtube. Remember now, I did not do this video, this was made by someone else.
Here are a couple pictures I was able to take in the yards back in 1971. You will see the Penn-Central engines in the first picture.
There are 72 rail lines across for taking one train that comes into the yard, then separating that train to make a new train to route the individual train cars making sure they go to the right destination. In the drone video you will see a lone car traveling by itself to a new track finally meeting up with other cars.
[IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/EmsLRV]Train 2 Feb 1971 by inspeqtor, on Flickr
The yard opened for business on March 6th, 1958 originally named "The Robert R. Young Yard" named in honor of the Central's late board chairman at a cost of $14,000,000. I have no idea what that would translate to in today's money. At the time it opened it was then the largest train yard in the world.
Last year I went to "The National New York Central Museum" here in Elkhart and found a letter from NYC about the opening of the yard. I took a photograph of the first page of the letter. Unfortunately the rest of the pages were stapled underneath the top page and that was under glass so I could not see the rest of the letter. [IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/23XL53d]IMG_5687-Rotate-Cropped-Resize by inspeqtor, on Flickr
Here is an aerial photo of the yards from (I am guessing) 1958 [IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/K4L2KH]IMG_5681-crop-resize2 by inspeqtor, on Flickr
Forgive me for not speaking the correct "train language" as I am sure I did not say everything correctly!