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Many Tracks

The Brighton Beach Hotel – a seaside resort at the south end of Brooklyn, constructed when the south end of Brooklyn was considered to be a long away from the built-up city – was famously moved inland to prevent damage from the ocean. The hotel was built in 1878 and moved in 1888, by being jacked off its foundations onto a bunch of flatcars built on temporary railroad tracks. This was only realistic, using the technology of that era, because it was an entirely wood-framed building.

I’ve seen any number of engravings of the move, but the photo above, from the Library of Congress, is the first I’ve seen. You can see the location of the multiple tracks (I’ve seen both 20 and 24 tracks listed in different sources) and one three-engine train. I think there may be another three-engine train off to the right of the frame.

Buildings still get moved now and then, but rarely ones as big as this.