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THE TRAIN LADY

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Elaine Silets  has built the largest model train display in the world.

 Silets recently opened her train gardens to the public and thousands train lovers came by to look at her train set.

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She began her life as the Train Lady after her beloved late husband Harvey’s law career took off, leaving her in search of a hobby. That hobby became Huff & Puff Industries, a company that designs and manufactures model railroads for home and garden displays.

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She has 10 acres of gardens, waterfalls, lakes, trestles, bridges, and replica towns and pastoral scenes, her Glorée & Tryumfant Garden Railway in North Barrington, Illinois, it’s no wonder they call her the Train Lady.

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Her work with trains has been seen in the Nieman Marcus Christmas book, in the lobby of Chicago’s Hancock Center, and in Tiffany & Co. window displays.

Eleven model trains chug about the lavish gardens all-year round. 

The half-inch G-scale trains ply a Japanese water garden with waterfalls, a pond garden, rose gardens, a Snoopy topiary built especially for Silets’ grandsons, and other floral landscapes.

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She also has a private train museum on her property.  The Harvey M. Silets Memorial museum was built in honor of the Train Lady’s husband, a famous attorney who once represented Jimmy Hoffa. The museum is a scaled down replica of Greater Chicago that has 16 trains of its own, a drive-in movie theatre, and other transit-related exhibits like elevated trains and subway trains.

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‘I live in heaven,’ she said. ‘I do. Isn’t it beautiful?’

originally reported in The Daily Mail