Chuck Yungkurth recently passed away in Boulder, Colorado.  He was an accomplished modeler, historian, author and designer.   For years, readers of Railroad Model Craftsman were used to seeing Chuck’s drawings or articles on anthracite railroads.  Yesterday I did a Google search on Chuck and was amazed at the numbChuck_Yungkurth_2013er of books he authored.  I had not idea.   Born and raised in Scranton, he grew up surrounded by anthracite railroads Delaware and Hudson, Lackawanna, Erie and a few others.   Anthracite mines were a common sight in the Scranton skyline in those days.  He observed a great deal and later used his knowledge to enrich his many articles and books.

I first met Chuck in 1977 at IBM in Owego, NY.  He was a mechanical engineer working on high technology projects for his employer.   Over a several year period, I visited him and we did some railfanning in the Chemung Valley.  I visited Sayre to see the Lehigh Valley shops, some of the abandoned mainline of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western, the D&H yards in Binghamton, NY.  We managed to collect data for several projects for publication in the Gazette.

BingcoalyardtrestleandconveyorOne of my favorite collaboration was working with Chuck on coal conveyers. It was a challenge to build but with great drawings and photos from Chuck it went smoothly.  The plans and drawings were in the Gazette years ago.

Chuck introduced me to Nichols, NY which was once along the old Lackawanna mainline.  We found this interesting John Deere dealer.  He did a nice set of drawings and I built this model for the Gazette.

Copy of Dempsey Plumbing Scranton 1982

This old building was a real gem.  Chuck did a set of drawings and his daughter did a set of lettering for the building.  Sadly, I never finished the project.

Chuck supplied me with a set of railroad drawings for this Lackawanna caboose.  It was at the urging of Bill Shaumburg, editor of Railroad Model Craftsman, to do an article on building the car and Chuck would do the drawings.  The drawings were done and were pcab on bench finalublished but the article never made it due to some unknown reasons.   Well, the RMC changed hands and the article was published.

I think the railroad hobby has lost an accomplished gentleman who did a lot to further prototype modeling.

We will miss you.

Happy Trails,


5 thoughts on “FEATURED MODELER: Chuck Yungkurth

  1. He was the originator of the “Gumstump and Snowshoe” shelf layout design, a fascinating shelf switching layout that many in the model railroading community have replicated over the years. It was a classic design.

    • Thank you for the reminder of Chuck’s
      creation. It has been favorite of many modelers over the last 60+ years since it was first published the Model Railroader magazine.

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