The Section House or tool house was the headquarters for the Ma & Pa's section gangs. Each section gang, consisting of a foreman and five to seven track workers, was responsible for the maintenance of about ten miles of track on the Ma & Pa. They handled all maintenance from tie replacement to surfacing the track, tamping ballast, and clearing snow in the winter. Only bridge and trestle repairs were handled by a special gang, based in Fallston, Maryland, that operated over the entire railroad. Once a week the foreman walked his section from end to end to inspect it and ensure its safety. The hand car and in latter years a motor car used by the section gang and all of their tools were housed in the Section House.
This Section House is based on a standard set of plans developed by the Ma & Pa. Two of these houses are known to still be standing. One is located in Hyde Maryland. Built in 1903 the Hyde Section House served Ma & Pa's section 3. The other is located in Muddy Creek Forks. Built in 1911 this house served section 8. The Muddy Creek Forks house is now preserved as part of the Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad Preservation Society's Muddy Creek Forks Historic Site.
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Maryland & Pennsylvania RR Section Housea set by Cale Leiphart