Skip to Main Content

University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Introduction to William W. Hay Railroad Engineering Collection

An introduction to the Grainger Engineering Library Information Center's William W. Hay Railroad Engineering Collection


The collection contains over 5,500 technical reports, books, and journal issues in the areas of railroad engineering, railroad technology, and railroad history that were originally part of several AAR technical libraries and approximately 1,500 items originally owned by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).

The William W. Hay Railroad Engineering site at provides access to over 22,500 railroad engineering titles, including the Illinois statewide online catalog holdings, the TTCI gift collection, and approximately 250 full-text documents from the AAR. This comprehensive database provides access by author, organization, title, and subject to a wealth of railroad engineering materials. The creation of such a database was an important contributing factor in the original gift.

Below is a summary of many of the series represented in the collection, and some standout individual titles.

Coming Soon to a Stack Near You!

Association of American Railroads Safety and Operations: Manual of Standards and Recommended Practices. Sections A–S-III, 2007-2008 Proceedings of the Annual Convention of the American Railway Engineering Association, held in Chicago. 1949-1952, 1956-1958, 1963, possibly 1962 World Congress on Railway Research Proceedings: 1997. Vols. A-E. Held in Firenze (Florence) World Congress on Railway Research: Book of Paper Summaries, 1999. Held in Tokyo Directory of Personnel and Programs, 1999-2000. Engineering Career Services Office, College of Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Freedom of the American Road, 1956 Urban Freeway Development in Twenty Major Cities, 1964 Highway Research Board Special Report 5: Channelization. The Design of Highway Intersections at Grade, 1952

Railroad Conferences and Proceedings, Located in Call Number 325 (3rd Floor East)

Selected series and standout individual entries include:

Proceedings of Association of American Railroads committees. Proceedings of several Railroad conferences and symposiums including the 1996 National Transportation Symposium and the 1991 World Railway Congress proceedings. Proceedings on the 15th and 16th Pan-American Railway Congresses Railroad Research Bulletin volumes (1973-81) Department of Transportation Academic Awards 1981, 1984-6 Railroad Research Study Papers, 1975 US Department of Transportation: Federal Railroad Administration reports 1975-1999: several reports go to 2003, but are not considered part of the Hay Collection.  

This portion of the collection also contains a wide range of popular and academic books pertaining to railroads and railroad engineering.

General Railroad Engineering Technical Books and Technical Literature, Located in call number 625 (3rd Floor West)

A large number of popular and academic books on railroads and railroad engineering history, several by William W. Hay, as well as volumes on railroad economics and model railroads
A wide range of Association of American Railroads Research Department Reports as well as research programs and manuals,1961-2009

South African Railway Track, 1983 survey
Facility for Accelerated Service Testing reports
Surveys Japanese Rail Networks, beginning in 1970
AAR-IHHA Heavy Axle Load Work Proceedings, 1990
American Railway Engineering Association Symposium Proceedings, 1996
Canadian National Railway Technical Research Centre Reports, 1985
Track Buckling CWR reports based on Russian Rail Research translated into English, 1966-983
Advanced Rail Management Rail Maintenance Seminar Proceedings, 1994
AAR Railway Investigation Reports, 1930-1940
Various Rail Safety and Crossing Reports
Arema C & S Conference Proceedings, 1998
ARA manual, 1922
AAR Track-Train Research Reports, particularly concerning wheel failure
Wheelset Congress Proceedings, various years between 1969-1998
Institution of Mechanical Engineerings Conference Proceedings, 1979 and 1988
AAR Tank Car Safety Program and Freight Car Design Specifications, 1964
ATMX Railcar Containment System Safety Assessment - Engineering and Consequence Analysis, 1989
ASME/IEEE Railroad Conference Proceedings 1984-1997
American Railroad Association Signal DivisionYear:1920-1938Material Type:Conference
International Library of Technology Locomotives and their Operation, Manuals, 1926
Second International Symposium on the Use of Cybernetics on the Railways Proceedings, 1967
Books and international conference proceedings concerning subways and magnetic levitation vehicles.
AAR Operations and Maintenance Department Mechanical Division and Office of Mechanical Engineering reports, 1934-1943
Office for Research and Experiments of the International Union of Railways, research reports 1965, 1972-1991
European Rail Research Institute reports 1991-1995
International Union of Railways Codes and Statutes, 1984-1995, 1999, Codes A to 992
World Congress on Railway Research Proceedings 1994-1997
Permanent Way Institution, journal and report of proceedings 1986-2021
World Wide Directory for Railway Research and Testing Facilities - Draft
Maintenance plan for real property, real property installed equipment, and personal property at the Transportation Test Center. 1994
AREMA Conference Proceedings: 1998 Track and Structure, 1999 technical conference, 2016-2022 annual conference
NTIS reports, undated
International Railway Conference on Better Journey Time–Better Business: selected papers presented at Stech, vols. 24-26, September 1996
Heavy Haul (Railway/Association) Conferences 1982-2009 (with some variability in between, not comprehensive)
Technical proceedings of the International Railroad Technology Transfer Seminar, New Orleans, Louisiana, January 1977
IEEE technical papers presented at the 1977 Joint ASME/IEEE/AAR Railroad Conference, March 30-April 1, 1977, Washington, D.C.
AREMA trackwork portfolios
A wide array of Federal Railroad Administration technical and research reports
AAR Technical Committee reports
Rail and Wheel Lubrication Research Symposium Proceedings
AREMA Manual for Railway Engineering 2020-2021
Dissertations and a Research Reports, including from the CAO Subcommitte
Supplement to Manual of Standards and Recommended Practices, AAR, 1970, 1972, and 1985, Section J.
Railroad Maintenance Equipment and Materials Manual, Railway Progress Institute
FAST and HTL/HAL reports, 1991-3
AAR Centralized car hire building blocks executive summary, 1994
AREMA Symposium on Elastic Track Fasteners, 1992
1980 American Railway Engineering Association Stresses in Railroad Track Tablot Reports
A wide array of FRA reports
Transportation Research Board, National Research Council: Track Research Compendium - Reprints of Articles on Track Research, 1928-1980