One of New York Central’s “Mercury” engines in Chicago, 1936.

Where did these go, because I desperately want them back.

You do NOT want them back.

They look neat but there’s a reason these beasts were retired. The Mercury Streamliners, as they was known, got off to a good start. They improved the quality of travel and attracted many tourists to the rail service, which in the 1930s was already growing less popular as a result of the flourishing air travel industry.

But it was not to last. In 1938, a Mercury Engine plowed into a cow named Bessie in upstate New York and, lacking a cow catcher, the collision tore off part of the sleek streamlined veneer that covered the engine underneath. This is what a Mercury Streamliner Engine looks like under its slick armor:

Clearly visible are the three toothy skulls with phallic lobed craniums and bladed jaws. The public was horrified.

To explain, the Mercury Engine was designed by Hans Richard Giger, father of future “Alien” creature designer Hans Rudolf Giger. Like his son, Hans Richard was known in the art world for his dark and disturbing designs. Having won the design contest for the Mercury Engine based on its exterior, the manufacturers were willing to ignore the unseen undercarriage’s necessary skeletal and demonic fashions.

Once seen however, the jig was up. The public demanded the engines be taken offline, and it didn’t happen a day too soon. It seems the Swiss architect had designed his trains with much the same mentality with which Ivo Shandor designed 55 Central Park West- As a doomsday device.

Had the Engines been online only ten days longer, they’d have seen The Day of The Awakening of the Unholy Star, a Neokhlystic holiday on which the world was mourned in preparation for the end of all time. As designed, Giger’s trains would’ve come to live, devouring and digesting their patrons in a blood sacrifice to the Satanic Lord of Carnage, Beelciftan. Had the sacrifice been accepted, the apocalypse would’ve swept from New York across the globe. So said the legend.

Here’s the thing- Legend or not if the Mercury trains had remained online a week after they were revealed as demonic devices, their owner, Bill Gruss von Krampus would’ve had the funds he intended to send to the Nazi Regime in Germany in 1938, which would’ve allowed them to start their nuclear program two years earlier. This would’ve given them the Bomb in 1943, two years before the United States completed its Manhattan Project.

So the demonic plot may well have come true in reality had the unsettling underskeletons of these beasts been revealed. There is now a monument to the Cow of Albany that died to reveal the truth.

Thank you Bessie, for without you the world would be a different place, if it still existed at all.

mmm, streamlining.


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