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Ohio Railway Museum August 14, 2022

by Chris Guenzler

Sunday morning dawned showery in Marion, Ohio and after our regular morning preparations and checking e-mail and the like, we filled the car with petrol and I drove us to Bob Evans for breakfast. After a filling meal I drove us south to Delaware to our first station and a surprise.

The station in Delaware of the Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati Railroad, later known as the Bee Line before merging into the Big Four, which was built in 1887.

St. Louis-San Francisco observation car 1100 built by Barney & Smith in 1883 as Kansas City, Fort Scott and Memphis Railroad 1100, re-numbered 7 in 1947, renumbered 8 a year later and named "Arkansas" in 1954. It came off the railway's roster in 1959, was sold in 1960 to Claude L. Steppe of Athens, Ohio‚Äč and moved to Delaware.

George P. Silcott, the last owner of the car. From here I drove us to the Ohio Railway Museum in Worthington.

Ohio Railway Museum history

Founded in 1948, the Ohio Railway Museum is one of the oldest railroad museums in America and began with the acquisition of Ohio Public Service Interurban Car 21, which is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The museum is designed to educate through displays and demonstrations, the role and effect of the railroads in the life of the people and businesses of Ohio and the United States.

The Columbus, Delaware and Marion Railway (CD&M)B was formed in 1901 to establish local and interurban passenger and freight service connecting Columbus, Worthington, Delaware and Marion over 60 miles of track. It also operated service to Bucyrus through the Delaware, Marion and Bucyrus Railroad on an additional 20 miles of track.

The company filed for bankruptcy in March 1933 and abandoned its rail lines later that year. Eventually, the interurban rail service was replaced by bus service. The CD&M Electric Company was merged with the Reserve Power Company to form Marion-Reserve Power Company in 1937.

The Ohio Railway Museum now operates on the former Columbus, Delaware and Marion railbed and right-of-way. The museum's collection includes the last CD&M interurban parlor car 501, nicknamed "The Red Bird". Until the late 1970's the museum also operated Norfolk & Western 578 Pacific-class steam locomotive.

Today, we offer a glimpse of railroading's past through our exhibits, static equipment displays of electric traction and steam. We also offer rides on both our streetcars and our Pullman passenger car. Come visit us and explore a century of rail evolution!

Our Visit

We saw the volunteers preparing for the day's activities and I caught their attention, gave them my card and they allowed us in early. Jackie showed us around.

Norfolk and Western 4-6-2 578 built by Alco-Richmond in 1910 and donated to the Central Ohio Railfan Association in 1959.

The cab of Norfolk and Western 4-6-2 578.

Cleveland RTA Red Line Airport Line car 163 built by Pullman Standard in 1967.

Norfolk and Western combine 1511 built by Bethlehem in 1918.

Interior view of the combine.

Pennsylvania Railroad Railway Post Office Car 6510 built by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1920.

Interior of the post office car.

Erie Doodlebug 5012 built by Bethlehem-Electro-Motive Corporation in 1931. It was leased to the New York, Susequehanna and Western by the Erie Railroad and was last used by Erie to pull commuter trains in the New York area. It was acquired by the museum in 1952.

Cab of Union Pacific 163.

Marble Cliff Quarries 0-4-0T 1 built by Vulcan Iron Works in 1924 as Arrow Sand Company 1. It was donated to the Central Ohio Railfan Association in 1955 and used to be on display in Columbus.

Canadian National 5060 built by Canadian Car and Foundry in 1937 as Canadian National 5198.

Illinois Terminal PCC Car 450 built by St. Louis Car Company in 1948.

Ohio Public Service Car 64 built by the Kuhlman Car Company of Cleveland in 1924.

United States Army 65 ton switcher 7178 built by General Electric in 1943.

The replica Worthington station.

The interior of the station.

Columbus & Southern Ohio Electric Company steeplecab 7 built by Kuhlman Car Company in 1925.

Youngstown & Ohio River Railroad steeple cab 2 built by Baldwin-Westinghouse in 1922.

Columbus Railway Power & Light Company streetcar 703 built by Kuhlman Car Company in 1925.

This rare Kalamazoo speeder 216L, built circa 1930, was stored in a shed for over forty years and recently restored from the ground up.

Algoma Central speeder 220. We bought our tickets and some souvenirs which I took out to the car then boarded the train and would depart at 12:30 PM.

Swift Meat refrigerator cars 37453 and others. At 12:30 the train started moving down the rails.

The train started out of the yard.

The train ran to Dublin-Granville Road bridge and stopped.

Norfolk Southern Union Pacific 8363, Norfolk Southern 9890 and 7670 was power for the westbound train.

Then another Norfolk Southern eastbound train came through. After that we ran to Colonial Siding, the south end of our trip.

The train ran back to Dublin-Granville Road bridge.

The train ran back to the boneyards.

Then it was back to the museum. We thanked our train crew and the station staff before we walked out of the door of this great museum.