Prewar Lionel trains are those that were manufactured between 1901 and 1941. The onset of World War II forced the company to stop production. The next batch of toy trains by Lionel were manufactured after the war in 1945.
The prewar Lionel trains are very colorful and its accessories are also complete. Some might think that prewar toys are primitive and shabby, but not Lionel trains. The models are as detailed as the present models. The tender is made of metal, the engine has nickel plates and it has operating headlights. The tender also has a whistle. Accessories include lamp posts, stop control station, and station platforms.
Prewar Lionel trains are considered collectibles, and are rare finds. There are catalogs of prewar trains with color photos of these collections. It is said that the model toy trains show a lot about the American heritage and history. For those who cannot afford to, or cannot find prewar Lionel trains, owning or browsing through a catalogue can give them a good glimpse of the wonderful world of toy trains.
To find trains under this category, novice collectors are advised to get in touch with members of the Train Collectors Association. Being in that network will lead to more contacts. It is usually through these collectors that one can find rare models. These kinds of associations also publish their own catalogues, and hold events where train enthusiasts can gather and exchange information on where the best finds are, who owns what model, and get good advice and tips on maintaining and restoring old Lionel trains without spending too much.
It is also good to visit the National toy Train Museum in Strasburg, Pennsylvania, which has one of the largest collections of toy trains and relevant materials like catalogues and manuals regarding toy trains.
Recently I bought my Lionel "Pre War" 0-4-0 Electric Engine # 252 on Amazon.Bill wrote:
Just yesterday I picked up my LIONEL PREWAR TINPLATE #806 CATTLE & # 803 HOPPER CAR SET - NICE! at garage sale.Beverley wrote:
Got my Prewar Lionel "O" Gauge No. 263W Oil Gunmetal Tender years ago and am really happy with it.Maisie Ek wrote:
Got my NICE SHARP CLEAN LIONEL PREWAR 270 SINGLE SPAN RED GIRDER BRIDGE PRESSED STEEL years ago and am really happy that I got it.Dustin wrote:
Got my LIONEL 253E ELECTRIC LOCO PEACOCK REPAINTED PREWAR O-GAUGE #X3534 hours ago and am totally pleased the purchase.Daisy Bellis wrote:
Got my Lionel "Pre - War " Steam Engine # 262E & Tender some time ago and am totally pleased the transaction.Jenna wrote:
Got my Vintage HAFNER Tin Litho Prewar Sunshine Special Caboose years ago and am totally pleased the quality.Cristin Hora wrote:
Got my LIONEL 158 ELECTRIC LOCO BLACK REPAINTED PREWAR O-GAUGE #X3551 some time ago and am really happy with the price.Marya wrote:
Got my American Flyer Prewar Train Motor hours ago and am totally pleased the transaction.Ayanna wrote:
Today I bought my LIONEL X2758 METAL BOXCAR, COMPLETE, PREWAR ELECTROMAGNETIC BOX COUPLERS at a yard sale.Edith Twitchell wrote:
Got my American Flyer Prewar O Scale Train Motor months ago and am really happy the quality.Hilma wrote:
Just last week my daughter found my LIONEL 226E LOCO SCALE DETAILED 1940 PREWAR O-GAUGE #X3555 on Amazon.Daisy Bellis wrote:
Last week my wife bought my LIONEL GONDOLA MODEL 902, PREWAR, VERY GOOD CONDITION at a yard sale.Jeffery Cowan wrote:
Got my 4 Prewar Paul Revere Pullman US Mail Baggage 1205 Tin Litho Model Train Car Set hours ago and am really happy that I got it.Abby wrote:
Recently I picked up my LIONEL 150 ELECTRIC LOCO MAROON REPAINTED PREWAR O-GAUGE #X3550 on Amazon.Vicente Manville wrote:
Recently I bought my LIONEL PREWAR 332,339,341 P BLUE BOXES ONLY on Amazon.Lucilla Lecuyer wrote:
Just last week my kids bought my Marx Tin Litho Train #897 Pre War Electric Steam Engine Runs Great SCARCE CLEAN on eBay.Zofia Vickery wrote:
Got my LIONEL 248 ELECTRIC LOCO RED REPAINTED PREWAR O-GAUGE #X3532 months ago and am totally pleased that I got it.Gilbert Ocampo wrote:
Just yesterday I picked up my LIONEL PREWAR #93 SILVER WATER TOWER WITH OB at a yard sale.Laronda Tippit wrote:
Just last week my kids bought my LIONEL PREWAR 435 POWER STATION TYPE VII (1926 - 38) - NO RESERVE on eBay.