Our first stop in Galveston was the Galveston Railroad Museum (GRM), situated on property once owned by the small railroad, Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe Railway, purchased by the very big Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway (the AT&SF) in 1965.
After the Moody Foundation spared the small railroad’s buildings and infrastructure from an uncertain fate after the AT&SF no longer had use for them, the railroad museum was set up and created. Following Hurricane Ike in mid-September 2008, which hit Galveston directly, the museum received severe flooding to its buildings, rolling stock, and exhibits.
There was talk of the complex having to be closed, but after the organization was able to raise $100,000, it received $3 million in assistance from FEMA ensuring the museum's survival (american-rails.com/galveston-railroad-museum).
Built by Baldwin, this oil-burning prairie class locomotive is nicknamed Mary and Elizabeth Too in honor of Mary Moody Northen, who was instrumental in the founding of the Museum.
Built by Cooke Locomotive Works of Patterson, NJ, this ten-wheeler is an excellent example of the type of engine that powered passenger trains.
Both units (above and below) originally were part of the Southern Pacific Railroad. They were mothballed from 2000 to 2010 when they were acquired from the Railroad Museum of New England and restored. With the permission of the BNSF, the Museum was licensed to paint them in the famous Warbonnet Passenger Scheme of the Santa Fe.
This was the F7 and PA paint scheme which was used on the Gulf Line (GCSF) from Galveston. Trains number 15 and 16 ran between Galveston and Chicago and were known as the Texas Chief. The F7 locomotives were 300 series--so numbering these 315 and 316 honors both these pieces of Texas railroad history.
Built by Budd (of Philadelphia), it was rebuilt by Amtrak into a 76-seat coach.
Built as Santa Fe Dining Car #3109, re-built by Amtrak in1991. It was acquired by the Museum in 2011, restored to Amtrak certification, and renamed the City of Galveston.
Built by Budd, it crossed the southern and eastern U.S. About 1/3 of the car is kitchen (above) and 2/3 is dining area (below), accommodating 44 diners. It was retired in 1975 after an on-board fire.
This car is a four-door heavyweight baggage and mail car.
As I walked around this baggage car, I began to change my focus. The age of the cars revealed their character, their wear, and their struggle with the elements over the decades.
Built by the American Locomotive Company, this oil-fired Consolidation-type (2-8-0) engine served the Magma Arizona Railroad #5 hauling copper ore and mine supplies. It has been featured in several television commercials and movies.
In the case of this engine, I saw the details of the deep red against the shiny black to capture these details.
The oldest car in the Museum's collection. The Fort Worth and Dallas markings were applied when the caboose was restored in the 80s. Interestingly enough, the caboose never served on that particular railroad. Its primary service was on the Chicago Burlington and Quincy Railroad--probably for nearly one hundred years.
We'll take a break from rust and turn to another representation of the history of Galveston, Texas.
(The Museum's information sheet provided the details presented above on the cars in the railyard.)