Fake Railroad Glassware

It is relatively easy to apply railroad logos to modern glassware stock, and this means trouble for the part of the hobby concerned with railroad dining car glassware. The following information on reproduction or fantasy railroad glassware was compiled from several sources, especially Bill and Sue Knous who most generously gave us permission to post text and material from their book Railroad Detective: A Guide to Replica and Counterfeit Railroad Collectibles.

Right. An increasing number of bottles marked for railroads are showing up on Internet auctions. There are at least two sizes: a small milk bottle and a smaller creamer bottle, both with enamel logos. The consensus among experienced collectors is that many of these are fakes. According to one source, bottles with the PRR keystone logo, NYCS oval logo, Frisco "coonskin" logo, Southern Pacific Sunset logo, Soo Line logo, Cotton Belt Logo, and Santa Fe logo are being reproduced and sold in quantity. Most but not all have the following embossed on the bottom: 2 Reg - Half Pint Liquid - Liquid - Sealed 52SS. Other sources add Rock Island, Chesapeake & Ohio, and Katy to the list of fake bottles.

Update on the Above: Pictures of questionable bottles were sent in and described as having "embossed information at the bottom front and sides reading "4 Reg., Sealed (what looks like an L) 52 SS Half Pint Liquid " -- this is on the Cotton Belt.  On the Rock Island it reads "1 Reg Sealed L52S Half Pint Liquid." Click on either image for a larger version. Thanks to Rori W.

Some known and authentic dairy bottles marked for a railroad are: MoPac (Missouri Pacific -- found in two sizes), Northern Pacific, Milwaukee Road, Union Pacific (marking: UPRR DC&H Dept), and the Panama Railroad.

Left. This is a reproduction wine glass with Baltimore & Ohio in a banner through "Capitol Dome" logo. The authentic ones have the addition of "DINING CAR SERVICE."

Right. Baltimore & Ohio glasses were reproduced in 1984. This has a blue enamel Capitol Dome Logo with a small (R) on lower right side of logo.

Left. A square base pedestal glass with the Chessie Logo was sold by the B&O Transportation Museum, but this was not railroad issued.

Right. This 10 oz. tumbler with the Great Northern "Goat Logo" etched on the side was offered in a 1984 magazine.

Left. These glasses are believed to have been made at one time for a restaurant which is no longer operating. Both logos are blue enamel on 10 oz. straight sided glasses. Other glasses possibly from this same source:
  • D&H with white enameled logo
  • NYC with white enameled letters on a 4" water glass.
  • DL&W "Phoebe Snow" in tuscan red.
Left. This Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern Ry 16 oz. appears to be from the early 1900s. However, the use of black enamel for the logo indicates 1930's, which would date it after the demise of this particular road. Reportedly there is also a version with "KATY STATION" in a banner above a circle with an old time locomotive. Again the design is in black enamel.
Left. This is a souvenir glass with the Denver & Rio Grande "Scenic Line of the World logo.

This Rio Grande Prospector design on a white frosted 12 oz. glass is in black enamel. This is also a souvenir piece.
Left. Various shot glasses like these are available and are recently made. These come with various railroad logos.


This information comes with no guarantees and is advisory only. See Disclaimer and Things to Consider.

Bill and Sue Knous operate one of the premier railroadiana auction services, Railroad Memories, and consequently are well-positioned to know about railroadiana fakes and reproductions. They have been very generous in sharing information with the hobby, and we thank them for their gracious permission to reprint the information that they have compiled. We also thanks members of the rrdiana.nshore list for their contributions of information.