SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Railway signalman operating train track switches and holding a furled signal flag. The first mechanised and centralised railway switching system dates from 1856, and were used on the railways in England. Signals were also being developed at the same time in France, with the signalman shown here with a cap from the Chemins de Fer de l'Ouest railway company. By the 1890s, major stations in England and France had switching points with as many as 50-70 levers. Artwork from the eighth volume (second period of 1891) of the French popular science weekly 'La Science Illustree'.
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