Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Visit to MOT, Part 2

 Next we'll visit the Abbott train shed, just west of the Roberts building seen earlier.  Most of this building is relatively little changed from the photos I took twenty years ago.

Out in front of the shed the IT Class C is on display, nicely repainted.

 Entrance to the Tunnel of Doom has been blocked off for your safety.

The Purdue collection of older power still looks pretty good.


At the east end of the Abbott building are the operating electric cars.   This is the St. Louis Waterworks car.  The waterworks had their own little interurban line to carry workers to the plant.

 I can see how this platform might come in handy once in a while.

I believe we missed seeing one of these cars in action only because the Park Dept. guys were doing some work on the power lines near the operating track.

I suppose there must originally have been a good reason for selecting this site for a railroad collection back in the fifties, but the hilly terrain makes any full-scale railroad operation forever impossible.  With great ingenuity they were able to squeeze a short operating trolley line with a hair-pin turn onto the site, but that's it, apart from the miniature train down below.

Alongside the Roberts building is what I'll call the upper yard, with two display tracks and the trolley line looping around it.  The Big Boy, a newer model UP rotary, and a few other things are on display here.

A couple of volunteers were at work, fixing up details in the Big Boy's cab, which is open for the public.  

(to be continued...)

Update: If you scroll down to the bottom of this page (a history of the Frisco railroad) there's a brief history of MOT written in 1960, which is quite interesting.  There's even a nice picture of the Lake St. engine as acquired from Mexico.  The museum was founded in 1945 with the acquisition of the Bellefontaine horse car, shown earlier, and five acres were purchased that year at Barrett's Station to display the horse car and a handful of other relics.  Then they kept acquiring more and more equipment, requiring more and more land... sound familiar?


Australia said...

I love this subject, I have seen such trains in Sri Lanka.
good collection. keep it up

Anonymous said...

I was just there this past weekend and was quite impressed. Even my non-railfan brother enjoyed it. Though I didn't find the IT passenger cars (410, 104, 241), and despite seeing the North Shore Line Ferry-truck flatcar I some how didn't photograph it.

Tim F

Anonymous said...

What happened to the Indianapolis trolleybus that the museum had in the olden days?

Anonymous said...

My recollection is that the trolleybus is kept at an off-site garage, along with most of the bus collection.