Loading Spinner

Williams O Scale Model Railroads & Trains

Williams Trains was founded in 1971 by Jerry Williams of Columbia, Maryland. Williams initially developed reproductions of classic standard-gauge locomotives and rail cars originally manufactured by Lionel and Ives in the '20s and '30s. These reproductions were all made of steel in the gauge used for the original trains. Locomotives and cars were available as either unpainted Repli-Kits or fully painted to match the colors of the original models.

Williams switched its focus from standard-gauge replicas to O gauge replicas in the late '70s. Jerry Williams had acquired dies from the Kusan train company and began producing post-war replicas in O gauge. These sets included NASA and military sets. In the '80s, demand for scale-sized locomotives increased, so Williams introduced the Crown Edition Line of detailed, handmade brass scale models in O gauge.

By the end of the '80s, Williams had to cut back on expensive replicas and began making diesel reproductions and other models that were cheaper to produce. Williams was known for its '50s Lionel reproductions, although the detailing Williams put on these cars did not always match the originals. In 2007, Jerry Williams retired, selling his company to Bachmann Industries. Bachmann continues to offer a line of Williams model trains in three-rail O gauge.

Quick Facts

  • One of Williams' standard-gauge reproductions was the Lionel 381E, considered by many to be the holy grail of model railroad locomotives. This locomotive was originally produced by Lionel from 1928 to 1936
  • Williams phased out its standard-gauge reproductions in the '80s, selling the tooling to MTH. Mike Wolf, founder of MTH, was a former employee of Jerry Williams who started working for Williams Trains in 1973 at the age of 12
  • Williams acquired a small following of hobbyists who preferred a vintage layout but wanted modern equipment

Recommended Items at Auction

See all items

Williams O Scale Rio Grande Set and Walthers Theater
Apr 27, 10:00 AM EDT
Williams O Scale Rio Grande Set and Walthers Theater
by Atlanta Auction Gallery, ltd
Est: $150- $350
$500 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Williams O Scale Model Railroads & Trains

Atlanta Auction Gallery, ltd

Atlanta Auction Gallery, ltd