History: Carl Friedrich Zimpel (1801-1879) was a German soldier and civil engineer who traveled to the U.S. in 1829 and worked for the railroads. In 1840 he published Das Eisenbahnwesen von Nordamerika, England und Anderen Lindern (Railway Practice in North America, England, and Other Countries). This book is now very rare and Messrs. James Guilbeau and Bruce Holcomb seeking to increase awareness of it as well as access to it � produced this translation. In 2008, a photocopy was donated to the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library by Mr. James Guilbeau.

Scope: Zimpel's book describes the design and construction of early railroads in the United States with an emphasis on railroad right-of-way construction and includes many drawings and diagrams. Also included in this collection is a detailed biography of Zimpel.

Holdings: Included in Collection B-18 are a photocopy of Das Eisenbahnwesen in the original German, a copy of the translation, some correspondence relating to the translation, and a CD that contains technical drawings from the book, the translation, and the biography. A photocopy of Zimpel's book: the Railway Between the Mediterranean, the Dead Sea, and Damascus, by way of Jerusalem (1865) has been added to this collection.

Access: Both the translation and the German copy of Das Eisenbahnwesen may be reproduced in full. The biography is protected by copyright and only a select portion of it may be photocopied.