Marty received his first Lionel trains at Christmas 1959 when he was 8 years old. The first layout soon occupied much of the attic at 1016 Judson Avenue in Evanston Illinois.
The trains were packed away and stored as Marty concentrated on college, building a career and marriage.
Marty’s son, Erik, received his first new Lionel trains and his Dad’s 1950s trains at Christmas 2003, when Erik was 4.
Father and son began joint construction of a new layout, named after Erik’s beloved pet tortoises. The layout uses “forced perspective” to an extreme, with G-gauge LGB trains in the foreground , O-gauge in the middle ground and HO buildings at the rear.