Monday, August 31, 2015

Visit to MOT, Part 1

 Last week I had an opportunity to visit the Museum of Transportation in St. Louis for the first time in several years.  A lot of progress has been made and in less than two hours I managed to take over a hundred pictures.  This is just a start.

The new Orthwein visitors center is now open and is very impressive.  This wasn't even begun the last time I was here.  Visitor parking is now on the lower level in the area of the trolley car barn.

Since this is a general transportation museum, the main hall has a few antique autos on display, along with two very interesting old railroad cars.

The Boston & Providence car (c. 1835) is now on display.  This is, they say, the oldest railroad passenger car in the nation.  Its complicated history is well summarized in the accompanying sign.

And a local horse car from the early 1870's is on display also.  This was MOT's first piece of equipment, having been preserved by SLPS.

The center also includes a snack shop, gift shop, displays of railroad uniforms and china, and a separate children's play area, not shown.

 Outside the new visitors center, there is a playground, and the miniature railroad seen above, which circles the lower level of the museum grounds.  For the railroad displays, I think I'll start at the top (south) level of the property and work down.  This is the big Roberts building, an open-sided shed covering six or seven tracks, with a large number of locomotives and passenger cars, mostly restored.  As with most barns, photography is usually difficult, but I can't complain -- protecting the equipment is job #1.

The Daniel Nason is the oldest locomotive in the collection.

And this is DL&W 952, one of the few double-cab locomotives in preservation.

And then the Reading's unique Black Diamond inspection locomotive.

And while we're on the subject of little engines, the Lake Street Elevated engine Charles H.

 And we got a nice guided tour of several Pullman cars.

And there's lots more....

 And in the shop next door, volunteers are working on putting the next PCC back into service.

 (to be continued....)


Anonymous said...

Now that there is additional barn space at IRM; maybe some day the Lake Street Elevated locomotive could come to IRM on loan. I believe it is the only surviving elevated locomotive from any of the four cities that ran Elevated Railroads. I wish one of the New York Elevated locomotives had survived. It sounds like you had a great trip!

Ted Miles
IRM Member

Anonymous said...

Only Chicago and New York had steam engines on their elevated railways. Boston and Philadelphia elevated lines were electrifided when built


Randall Hicks said...

Sorry, Ted, I'm afraid no such "loan" in in the works. We both have too many other things to do.

Anonymous said...

I believe there are a few derelict New York ones in Alaska as well as South Side Rapid Transit #42 down in Cuba. Wait a second, did we reestablish diplomatic relations! Quick to the State Department, there's a steam locomotive that needs repatriating. (He said in a very tongue in cheek manner to avoid anyone reporting that IRM is actually getting the loco. from Tocajo, Cuba) Tim F.