ATT - American Train & Track Corp.
A Brief History
In addition to the Tri-ang Hornby products, the majority of the freight cars were imported from Roco of Austria.
Whilst Roco is now famous for manufacturing models for many different American model suppliers, in the mid-1960s Roco had just commenced marketing a small range of HO scale freight cars in the USA under their own brand name. It is believed that Mike Tager saw an opportunity in the market to import and repackage an instant range of freight cars and negotiated a deal to market them exclusively under his own ATT label.
Lines Bros. closed its Tri-ang import company in New York circa late 1966.
Mike Tager had worked as a sales agent for Atlas Tool Co. Inc. of Hillside, New Jersey, an American model railway company, and decided to leave Atlas to set up his own company as an importer of Rovex/Tri-ang Hornby railways. He took an office in the 200 Fifth Avenue building in New York formerly occupied by Lines Bros.
Rather than just import and sell on products, he founded American Train & Track Corp. to import and repackage model railways from various European manufactures and market them under his own ATT label. The packaging was manufactured and the repacking was done by Pioneer Container Corp. of Cedarburg (a suburb of Milwaukee), Wisconsin.
Mike Tager persuaded Rovex to produce some of their Transcontinental models in American liveries and fit them with NMRA couplings before dispatch to the USA. Initially the 2nd series Streamline Passenger Cars and Old Time Passenger Cars together with Stephenson’s Rocket and Coaches and a range of bridges and stations featured in the 1967-1968 Catalog. Freight cars and Budd Rail Diesel Cars were to follow later.
Most of the locomotives were manufactured by Mehano in the former Yugoslavia. There were also some small Japanese-brass locomotives and a range of plastic accessories from West Germany (manufactured by Pola). Track was, of course, provided by Atlas.
The first illustrated price list dates from May 1967.
Despite the interesting range of models, for us as collectors, many of the Rovex manufactured models were severely lacking in accuracy when compared with their intended original prototypes and the Tri-ang Hornby range were also quite out of scale; they did not match well when mixed with other more accurate HO scale models.
Sales were not particularly good and Mike Tager closed ATT in 1970.
The remaining stock was sold off to PMI Products who repackaged and sold them under the ‘Model Power’ and ‘Precision Miniatures’ labels.
The closure of ATT was not the end of the line, though, for the Mehano and Roco manufactured ranges of models. In many ways, the true successor to ATT was Parkway Industries Co. of Cleveland, Ohio who continued to import the Mehano diesel locomotives and Roco freight cars, repackage and market them as sets and individual models under their own name until circa 1974.
During that time former ATT models began to appear in the Life-Like catalogues, then Model Power again, AHM marketed many Roco products and more recently a re-tooled version of the ALCO Century 415 Diesel has appeared in the IHC range.