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[hand-kahr] /ˈhændˌkɑr/
a small railroad car or platform on four wheels propelled by a mechanism worked by hand, used on some railroads for inspecting tracks and transporting workers.
Origin of handcar
An Americanism dating back to 1840-50; hand + car1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for handcar
Historical Examples
  • But even as the handcar was passing him Mr. Trimm regretted his hastiness.

    The Escape of Mr. Trimm Irvin S. Cobb
  • He was thus engaged when the handcar rattled over the bridge.

    Trading Jeff and his Dog James Arthur Kjelgaard
  • He made a jump off the right-of-way, and as the handcar flashed by he watched its flight from the covert of a weed tangle.

    The Escape of Mr. Trimm Irvin S. Cobb
  • Bannon walked back to the tracks, in time to see a handcar and trailer, packed with men, come up the track and stop near at hand.

    Calumet 'K' Samuel Merwin
  • He carried 'Thusia to the street and rested her on a handcar that stood beside the railway and wrapped her in his greatcoat.

    Dominie Dean Ellis Parker Butler
  • The section men had even got upon their handcar and were pumping away up the east-bound track.

  • There was nobody left in the cut, and both the train and the handcar on which the section hands had traveled, were out of sight.

  • The crippled one was helped aboard of the handcar, Zeph joined them, and the handcar sped away.

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