The President Express is the second book in Series 1. It was written by Lin Oliver with illustrations by Charles Pyle.
Tuck and Billie, along with their dog Chief, arrive at Chicago Union Station where they decide to go exploring and meet up with a magician. His pet bunny, however, becomes an object of pursuit for Chief and the three humans go after him. After finding Chief, who reconciles with the rabbit, Tuck and Billie try to make their way back to the train, but it leaves without them.
Salvation comes in the form of an African-American engineer named Maynard Henry, who sympathizes with the children and offers them a lift to Washington D.C. on his own train, the President Washington. After hearing about Tuck's dome car and offering to be it's first passenger, the train runs into a Pennsylvania thunderstorm, which frightens the children and Mr. Henry. As the train makes it's way into the Horseshoe Curve, they can see that lighting has destroyed the signal, worrying them even more over the possibility of another train coming at them on the same track. When they head into the tunnel (which is also called the Horseshoe), Mr. Henry's concerns of crashing into a West Virginian freight train, which was supposed to have passed the tunnel an hour prior, gives him the opportunity to stop the President Washington so that he can stop the freight train with a red lantern. But the slippery ground only twists his ankle, so Tuck and Billie decide to do the job for him and they succeed at preventing the freight train from colliding with the President Washington.
In Washington D.C., the four are met by Thaddeus Winterbottom, managing director of the railroad, who offers Mr. Henry a chance at driving the locomotive of tomorrow known as the Torpedo, setting the stage for the final book in the trilogy.
- "Train Across America"
- "Wabash Cannonball"
- "Great Railway Adventures Theme"