Scale model of railroad track three-way switch, used to guide a train from one track to another. The knob on this model represents what is known as a points lever mechanism, which moves a metal throw bar (brass in this model) to shift the track side to side within a wooden frame. The combination of a points lever and three-way switch would most likely be found in a station or depot where the trains are moving slowly.
This model is from a collection of railroad memorabilia and model trains. It is most likely a demonstration model, but conceivably could be a salesman’s sample or patent model. It might also have been used as part of a model train set, but has no contact points to make it function with other pieces.
Condition: Generally very good with the usual overall light wear, shrinkage to wood, oxidation to brass. Mechanisms in working condition.
"Railroad switch." Wikipedia. 6 April 2012. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railroad_switch (1 May 2012).