Friday, August 2, 2013

The California Railroad Museum

1862 No.1 Locomotive The "Gov. Stanford"
The California Railroad Museum. This place is fantastic! There is a huge collection of historic trains in this museum, and many of them you can actually enter and look around. Some of them are absolutely HUGE and awe-inspiring. It’s a fantastic place full of actual full size trains and equipment.

The museum features 21 restored locomotives and railroad cars, some dating back to 1862. The "Sierra Scene" shows a large scale mockup of a construction scene high in the Sierra Nevada representing Donner Pass circa 1867, featuring the locomotive Gov. Stanford. 
1937 Luxury Super Chief "Cochiti"Dining Car No.1474
Other exhibits show how the influence of railroads changed American society, influencing travel, commerce and daily life, as well as the lives of railroaders and the diversity of people who work on railroads.
"Cochiti" Kitchen
1881 Passenger Coach No.3 "Silver State"
The “Lost Golden Spike” is on display. It’s a twin of the “Last Spike”, used at the 1869 ceremony which commemorated the last link in the Transcontinental Railroad. The spike of gold was the idea of David Hewes , a San Francisco financier and contractor. 
The "Golden Spike"
The spike had been manufactured earlier that year especially for the event by the William T. Garratt Foundry in San Francisco. Two of the sides were engraved with the names of the railroad officers and directors. A special tie of polished California laurel was chosen to complete the line where the spike would be driven.
"Lost Spike"
The “Golden Spike” ceremony was originally to be held on May 8, 1869, the date actually engraved on the spike. It was postponed two days because of bad weather and a labor dispute that delayed the arrival of the Union Pacific side of the rail line. It’s fantastic to see the “Lost Spike” in all it’s glory, which still has it’s sprue or extra metal attached during casting. The original "golden spike" is on display at the Cantor Arts Museum at Stanford University.

May 10,1869 Promontory Summit Ceremony
On May 10, in anticipation of the ceremony, Union Pacific No. 119 and Central Pacific No. 60 (better known as the Jupiter) locomotives were drawn up face-to-face on Promontory Summit. It is unknown how many people attended the event; estimates run from as low as 500 to as many as 3,000; government and railroad officials and track workers were present to witness the event.       
1952 Caboose No.25256
Great time in Old Sacramento and seeing the Railroad Museum. The kids sure loved the giant machines.

Highly recommended!
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  1. Thanks for the update on things and places to visit in Sacramento. I had no idea.