Austin Barr

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Austin Barr began constructing locomotive #6568, an 1½" scale Pacific, in 1965 while living in White Hall, Arkansas.

Barr was a charter member of the Mid-South Live Steamers, organized on 17 December 1966.

Austin Barr, far left, attending charter meeting of Mid-South Live Steamers at Bud Bartholomew's residence in Nashville on December 17, 1966. Harry Wade is the young man at front and center.

Barr finished #6568, along with his track at White Hall, Arkansas, for the first annual spring meet of the Mid-South Live Steamers. Austin continued to host Spring Meets from 1968 through 1973.

Harry Wade, who also attended the inaugural meeting of the Mid-South Live Steamers, provided the following about Austin Bar.

I knew Austin Barr quite well, but not as well as some of the older members now deceased of course. When we first met I was kind of the "kid" of the club. See photo - I am in front. Austin is first row left. Shortly after that picture I went to college, then to sea (Navy) for a while, and then back to college so I rarely saw him after that. He had a 14,000 acre rice & soy bean plantation in Weiner, Arkansas (yes Weiner, as in Oscar Meyer) and built a large track on it where he hosted annual meets. He eventually lost the farm, his shop, and track in a divorce. I don't recall when he passed away but I don't think I saw him more than half a dozen times the last 20 years of his life. He was a very friendly and helpful guy and would help you in any way he could. I'm not sure he had a direct involvement in the development of the BLS standards, which may have already been established before he became Secretary, but he certainly helped promulgate and promote their usage.


  • "Mid-South Live Steamers", Austin F. barr, Live Steam Magazine, Apr 1969
  • "Weed Control", Austin F. barr, Live Steam Magazine, Mar 1974
  • "A Change to report in IBLS Doings", Austin F. Barr, Jr. and Ralph Tucker, Modeltec Magazine, May 1984
  • "Gold Spike Ceremony on Austin Barr’s Weiner & Western", William C. Fitt, Modeltec Magazine, Sept 1986
  • "The Other Guy’s Shop: Austin Barr", William C. Fitt, Modeltec Magazine, Sept 1986
  • "Mid South Live Steamers presents Leo Myers with the 'General' Happy Birthday Leo!", Austin F. Barr, Modeltec Magazine, Aug 1987