Whittle Shortline

From TrainSpottingWorld, for Rail fans everywhere
CSX freight train emerging from a colorful truss bridge, one of many wooden toy trains offered by Whittle Shortline.

Whittle Shortline is a toy company owned and operated in the United States.


  • Wooden toy trains are their specialty. These are non-motorized, and suitable for children. The cars and engines connect with magnets, and are easy to manipulate. Whittle Shortline differ from their peers in that most of their trains are patterned from prototype North American railroad equipment. The company proudly state their products as being 'Made in the USA'.

The high quality woods used make Whittle Shortline toys more expensive than many other brands that use the same type of track. However, they are compatible with brands such as BRIO.

As of recent, the company has introduced a wooden toy train line based upon The Little Engine That Could, as a domestic alternative to Thomas the Tank Engine.


During the mid-1990s, former US Air Force pilot Mike Whitworth received a compound mitre saw as a gift from his wife, ostensibly for doing home improvement projects.

The saw sat unused for almost two years, when Whitworth got the inspiration to produce toy trains for friends and family. By 1997, word of his craftsmanship had reached local retailers, who in turn asked that he make the wooden trains on a professional basis.

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