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About this Guide
This guide represents a selection of resources available through Northwestern University's Transportation Library. It is not intended to be all-inclusive, but a starting point in helping to guide your research. Please contact a librarian for additional assistance or inquiries about collections, items, or subjects.
Archival Collections - Motor Vehicles and Roads
David V. Woolf Bus and Train Collection, 1950-2009
The David V. Woolf Bus and Train Collection consists of 154 transportation-related postcards primarily related to buses and bus lines. The collection ranges in publication date from the 1950s to the early 200s. Text on the postcards is primarily in English; Dutch, French, and German are also representated. The collection measures .5 linear feet in one box.
Early Automobile Ephemera Collection
The Early Automobile Companies Ephemera Collection consists of brochures, advertisements for automobile parts and service products, maps and travel guides published between 1910 and 1932.
Stephen P. James Collection
Stephen P. James (1893-1971) was an early pioneer in highway safety development and education. This collection covers his and his colleagues' work from 1920 to 1969, including the organization and management of essay contests, supporting research programs at universities, and the planning and construction of the Pan American Highway.
Transportation Library Photograph Collection, 1913-1955
The Transportation Photograph Collection of the Northwestern University Transportation Library consists of 217 mounted silver gelatin prints in six bound volumes. The photographs are uncommon illustrations of automotive and maritime transportation spanning from the early to mid-20th century. The collection is multi-disciplinary in scope: beyond transportation, it touches on industrial design, engineering, social life, and local industry. Because of its focus on the early- to mid-20th century motor vehicle and shipping industries, the Collection presents an invaluable picture of transportation of the period.
William Luke Photograph Collection, 1880-2010
The William Luke Photograph Collection consists of 4,569 photographs of buses from at least 60 countries. William Luke acquired the photographs primarily as the editor of the magazine Bus Ride. The photographs are predominantly depictions of demonstrator buses, which are buses shown by manufacturers to potential customers. A special class of buses featured in the Collection is postbuses, which are buses operated in Switzerland and Austria by the postal service. Postbuses are descendants of the mail coaches operated in these two countries. The text on each photograph is in one or more of six languages. Each photograph has annotations in English provided by William Luke on the verso of the photograph. Many photographs also have printed text and/or annotations provided by other individuals on the verso. A few photographs have captions on the recto. The publication dates of the photographs range from 1880 to 2010, with the majority of the photographs published between 1980 and 1999. The Collection also contains one file of correspondence from William Luke.
William Luke Transportation Collection
The William Luke Transportation Collection consists of 6,252 local transit maps, time tables, transit tickets, postcards and other materials from 98 countries and 38 US states. The maps and timetables were produced primarily for use by tourists. The collection is in 34 languages; many have captions and other text in multiple languages. Materials in the collection range in publication date from 1935 to 2012, with the majority of the collection dating from the late 20th century. Additionally, the collection contains one file of correspondence from the donor.
Roads and Highways
Chicago Area Transportation Study
Search the Transportation Library's catalog to discover documents dating back to 1956, published by the Chicago Area Transportation Study.
Engineering plans, Environmental Impact Statements, and planning documents related to Chicago's proposed Crosstown Expressway, published in the 1960s and 1970s.
Lovers of the Open Road and the Flying Wheel
In the spring of 1915, tree travelers departed Iowa in a Model T for a journey to the Panama Pacific International Exhibition in San Francisco. Follow their journey along the Lincoln Highway, through the lens of a photo album documenting their trip, in the online exhibit Lovers of the Open Road and the Flying Wheel.
Wilmo Engine Company Dealer's Sample Catalog
Wilmo Engine Company Dealer's Sample Catalog
This album depicts early 20th-century motor vehicles. Photographs of the Wilmo Vehicle Co., founded circa 1915, depict early combustion automobiles and their engines, as well as the factories in which these automobiles and engines were assembled.