VGN Date Nails - for Mr. Garner

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at
Wed Dec 19 10:32:13 EST 2018

Thank you Hon. Mr. Abram.


I trust this source will help me solve the mystery of the ’61 date nail (and the others that came with it). Thx for sharing.


At Home in Newport (not to be confused w Newport News) VA in the beautiful County of Giles.


John Garner

Hapless Historian


From: NW Mailing List [mailto:nw-mailing-list at] 
Sent: Tuesday, December 18, 2018 3:41 PM
To: N&W Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at>
Subject: Re: VGN Date Nails - for Mr. Garner


Hon. Mr. Yanos von Garner,

At Anchor in Newport News.




The exhaustive study of American railroad date nails was written by Professor Jeff Oaks, Ph.D., Chairman of the Department of Mathematics at the University of Indianapolis.  The three volume work is titled Date Nails and Tie Preservation, endowed and privately published by the Univ. of Indianapolis, 1999.


Professor Oaks has "gifted" his research to the interested community by posting all three volumes on-line at his website.  I have put all three on my Google Drive, and you can get them at the link here given.



Each railroad which used date nails is treated separately, and the volumes are copiously illustrated with excellent photographs.  If you read the books, you will find there is some complexity to the subject, and even a hidden "manufacturing code" on each nail.


Jeff Oaks grew up in Oaks Corners, Pa, near Manchester, a crew and engine change point on the Lehigh Valley RR's line to Buffalo.  He acquired his interest in date nails from walking the Lehigh Valley tracks as a child.  He is a delightful young fellow, travels the world as a presenter at academic conferences, and speaks a number of languages, including Arabic.


-- abram burnett,

board certified practitioner of pseudo-science


                  Sent to You from my Telegraph Key
Successor to the MAGNETIC TELEGRAPH LINE of 1844

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