From Pine View Farm

Epitaph for an Economy 1

The Philadelphia Inquirer pens a paean to the last Silverliner II commuter cars, self-propelled electric train cars designed for commuter service, which first entered revenue service nearly 50 years ago.

Indeed, when I lived in Narberth, Pa., I rode to work and play in Center City almost every day on Silverliner II trains. They weren’t particularly elegant and were about as streamlined as bricks, but they worked.

They worked for almost half a century.

The Budd factory and the Baldwin Engine Works, as well as most other heavy manufacturing in Philly, are long gone.

One little sentence about halfway through the story encapsulates the legacy of vulture capitalists and bubblicious banksters, an epitaph for an economy:

The once-thriving Budd plant on Red Lion Road that employed about 2,500 workers was demolished in the late 1990s, giving way to a golf course that is now closed.


1 comment

  1. George

    June 29, 2012 at 10:52 am

    As a kid I rode Silverliners from Pottsville to Philadelphia and back to visit the grandparents. So the welding tech was sold to Krupp and Budd “evaporated.” That’s a good word for it. So the Germans have the wisdom to maintain heavy industry but we didn’t.