During our recent trip north for Trainfest, we were able to swing by the Walthers offices for a closer look at their day-to-day operations. Walthers is one of the biggest and oldest names in model railroading, and we've got a brief photo tour of their headquarters for your enjoyment.
It's humbling to see a sign that reads "model railroad equipment since 1932" and realize that you're at one of the birthplaces of the modern hobby. Despite the cloudy day that loomed overhead, we were awfully excited to head inside and see what Wm. K. Walthers Inc. had in store for us.
Upon entering the building, visitors are greeted by a mini-museum that showcases Walthers' long history with the hobby. I encourage you to click the image below for a high resolution look at the various trinkets, trains, and treasures that made their way into this display. From old manuals, ancient prototypes, and even a memento from The Today Show, this cabinet is one of the most wonderful in all of railroading.
More than anything else, the old Walthers crest below showcases the history of the company. It's a stunning reminder of the past and the pageantry of model railroading.
It wasn't surprising to see loads of product available for sale in the Walther retail store on location. But it certainly was overwhelming trying to grasp the sheer magnitude of the volume of it all. There were so many incredible trains and accessories within arm's reach! It's enough to make any modeler salivate!
Despite the amazing mini-museum and impressive retail store, the real magic of Walthers lies in their layout. From the cheese-head butler overlooking it to the wonderful trains themselves, their in-house layout is jaw-dropping in every way. Take a look for yourself below!
What a joy to see that beautiful golden diesel locomotive speeding through the colors of Autumn towards a sleepy little town. Between the produce stand, the steam engine rolling through the foreground, and the classic cars lined along the fence, this is an idyllic scene if I've ever seen one. Here's another shot of the gorgeous train whirring by as it evokes the colors of Fall around it.
The scene below might not be quite so whimsical, but it's certainly a high quality layout with some great background details and a sharp train rolling through the city.
Just look at the bustling city life in the images below! Cars are cruising down their small city street while townsfolks go about their day. A few folks have been caught out at the tracks, but have a beautiful view of the background hues with each break in the train's cars.
Fantastic layouts like this make one long for the days of yore when life was a little simpler and more beautiful. I'm just glad Walthers has managed to keep that era alive through its products and its dedication to the hobby for the past 80 years.
It was a great pleasure to visit Walthers in person,and I'd recommend to anyone in the area, whether a railroader or a regular person with a penchant for history. We hope you enjoyed this brief tour, and encourage you to keep an eye out for Walthers products right here on the DASH Marketplace.