For enthusiasts,researchers and modellers of the Great Eastern Railway

RG051: Attracting American Visitors, GER and LNER.

NEW APRIL 2022. Here you can purchase a pair of files which have a similar purpose - both are examples of publicity material to attract American visitors to our region.

The first, undated but published by the GER in around 1900, bears the title 'Great Eastern Railway Company of England: Cathedral Route to Liverpool, London, Glasgow and the Continent. The Connecting Link'. Inscribed on the cover is the name of W Birt, General Manager, Liverpool Street, and - more prominently - H J Ketcham, General Agents United States and Canada, New York City. The book was printed in Philadelphia and the copy scanned was obtained from the USA, and although a GER production had probably never been in England before.

It is a 30-page upright booklet containing tourist information accompanied by several drawings. The GER hotels are featured, and sample prices for train and boat journeys are listed and so too are London cab fares. An instructive chapter describes the GER's American Rendezvous (open between 1895 and 1902, which sets the limits on the date of the brochure) and West End Offices just off Trafalgar Square, complete with a large drawing of its interior. We must thank Bill King for supplying these scans.

The second item was issued by the LNER in its earliest days - it is also undated but has a reference to the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley from April to October 1924, which puts it to 1923 or 1924. Called 'Notes for American Visitors', it is basically a guide book skewed to American interests. Thus the biggest entry for Suffolk is the village of Groton, accessed from Hadleigh (which was "the birthplace in 1588 of John Winthrop, the famous governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony"). It has 36 pages. The first 35 have a small photograph at the top and text below it. Page 36 consists of a list of other tourist literature from the LNER. There is a fold-out map at the back showing points of interest for visitors: it is there but the lower part has been torn off in the past and clumsily repaired with sellotape. The back cover signs off 'London & North Eastern Railway of England & Scotland'.

File RC020 is a later edition of the Cathedral Route brochure (1907), with noticeably different content. The file has been derived from one of our earlier Information Sheets and therefore is in just black and white. It may be helpful to mention that we also have available a fourth booklet produced by the GER specifically for American visitors, and again the copy scanned had to be purchased from the USA. It is File RG047, the GER Guide to the Battlefields of Blegium and France. You can find out more about each of these items by scrolling down to the Related Products and clicking on it there.

The files here are provided with bookmarks and are word-searchable. They will be available to download as soon as payment has been made. You go to your account and click on ‘Downloads’. New customers create an account as they place their order.

Pages 30, 40
File Size (MB) 9.4, 2.7

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