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Now Austria’s busiest line, the West Railway connects Vienna to Linz and Salzburg. Built in the 1850s and originally named after one of its first and most celebrated passengers, the Empress Elisabeth Railway is the noble fourth 20 euro silver coin in our historic Austrian Railways series.
The line’s proximity to the spectacular Salzkammergut meant that it was much used by the Emperor Franz Joseph and his wife to travel to their summer residence in Bad Ischl. At their disposal for this purpose were special court trains that were pulled by the type 306 locomotive shown crossing an iron railway bridge in superb detail on the coin’s obverse. The 306 had a top speed of 100 kilometres per hour and was very economical fuel-wise, but it was not strong enough to pull the long, heavy express trains needed to satisfy the demands of the expanding passenger market. The coin’s reverse shows such a train arriving at the original West Station alongside a statue of the Empress Elizabeth, better known as Sisi.
Minted to a maximum of 50,000 pieces in Proof quality only, each coin comes in an attractive case with a numbered certificate of authenticity.
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