Chesapeake Division

Mid-Eastern Region, National Model Railroad Association


John Darlington's MB&;GL

The Maryland Blue and Gray Line

Serving Central Maryland and Southern Pennsylvania

Established 1950


The Maryland Blue and Gray Line, commonly known as the MB&;GL or "The Big Blue and Gray" was established in 1950 by members of the 29th Division who served together in Europe during WWII.

Originally conceived as a local or short line railroad operating in the Hagerstown, Maryland area, the MB&;GL has quickly grown into areas serving most of Central Maryland and Southern Pennsylvania, either directly or through interchange agreements. The MB&;GL, while now establishing its corporate headquarters in Timonium, Maryland, maintains its operational base in Hagerstown, and operates on track purchased or leased from the Baltimore &; Ohio, Western Maryland, and Pennsylvania Railroads. Its present direct area of service extends as far west as Miller, Maryland and as far north as southern Greencastle, Pennsylvania which is the home of the MB&;GL's single largest customer, the Henderson Steel Plant.

Edison Barrel

Loading up at Edison Barrel (John Darlington Photo)

While initially starting out as a principal coal hauler for Henderson and local industries, the MB&;GL has broadened its customer and commodity base to where it now includes such revenue producing industries as steel fabricators, commercial, military and civilian electronic parts and equipment manufacturing, cement, coal and grain transshipment as well as a host of local businesses which ship their products all along the East Coast and as far away as Washington State.

Arkwright Fabricators

Arkwright Fabricators and Marlins Machinery, Miller, MD (John Darlington Photo)

While the MB&GL maintains a number of owned locomotives such as Baldwin RS-2s, H-16/44s and a couple of new GP 30s, it has, on occasion, found it necessary to lease other locomotives from the B&O, WM and PRR on a short term basis. Therefore interesting motive power lashups can be seen along the MB&GL on a frequent basis. All servicing and repair, even on locomotives leased from others, is initially handled at the MB&GL’s terminal in North Hagerstown.

MB&GL’s H15/44 No. 16

MB&GL's H15/44 No. 16 stands idle at the B&O Warehouse, Miller, MD (John Darlington Photo)

According to a press release from the Maryland Blue & Gray Line headquarters in Timonium, the MB&GL is actively looking for additional opportunities to enter into additional Trackage Rights Use Agreements with other short line and regional railroads. Interested parties should contact MB&GL should contact John Darlington, President and CFO.

Hofmann Electrical Factory

Loading operations at the Hofmann Electrical Factory, Big Spring, MD (John Darlington Photo)

West End Yard

West End Yard, Hagerstown, MD (John Darlington Photo)

Railway Express Agency Terminal

Railway Express Agency Terminal, Greencastle, PA (John Darlington Photo)

Rolling Mill

The Rolling Mill at Henderson Steel Corp, Greencastle, PA (John Darlington Photo)

Main Terminal

MB&GL Main Terminal and Operations Office, North Park, Hagerstown, MD (John Darlington Photo)

Keystone Power Plant No 1

Keystone Power Plant No 1, Greencastle, PA (John Darlington Photo)

View the layout diagram.

John has registered the MB&GL with the NMRA Pike Registry.