International passenger

trains in 20th Century Europe

International passenger trains in 20th Century Europe

From the Baltic to the Black Sea

From Scandinavia via Sassnitz on the Baltic to Constanţa on the Black Sea, these major routes connected North and Central Europe to South East Europe. The cities of Berlin, Praha, Wien, Bratislava, Budapest and Bucureşti were served by these arteries. Services between them were provided by two important routes.

Political Aftermath of WW1


Balt Orient route


The Peace Making Process 1918-21 had a major disruptive affect on Central Europe and its rail routes.

The emergence of new states from the territory of the Austro-Hungarian Empire brought new barriers to the railway system whereby route direction was often reversed and new networks were found incompatible for the needs of the new states. New border crossings were installed which delayed transit and complicated operating systems. Hungary was the state most burdened with border posts yet still retained its radial network having lost 13,000kms trackage.

From the map, the Berlin-Orient artery was concentrated into two major routes:- Balt-Orient and Berlin-Bucuresti. Both these were in place before 1914.

This route was in place and serving the imperial kingdoms of Germany and Austria Hungary by the start of the First World War. The Balt Orient had become a busy artery before 1914 when it carried the majority of the Berlin-Wien traffic.

Before 1914 some of the Berlin-Wien services bypassed Praha by taking a direct route from the Czech/German frontier at Děčín to Kolín and thence by a variety of routes to Wien. There is some evidence that the avoidance of Praha was a deliberate policy of the Austrians. These avoiding services ceased by 1920.

B1: Balt Orient


Balt Orient routes International passenger trains in 20th Century Europe

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