Text and Photos by Author
author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed
without the author's consent.
Comments are appreciated at...firstname.lastname@example.org
The Hagerstown Roundhouse Museum located at 300 South Burhans Boulevard, Hagerstown, Maryland, has exhibits relating to local railroad history and model railroads.
The Hagerstown Roundhouse Complex was built in 1939. The 25 stall roundhouse and shops were the major facility for maintenance and repairs of locomotives and cars in Western Maryland. The railroads were the largest employers in Washington County for more than 50 years. The Roundhouse facility was demolished on March 13, 1999.Our Visit We arrived here and it looked like more of a CSX yard than a museum.
Located in City Park, the Hagerstown Railroad Museum features hundreds of signs, signals, bells, telephones and tools that were used by railroad workers throughout history. Most of the items in this significant collection came from the Western Maryland Railroad Company. Of special interest are an 1885 Pump Car and an 1875 Velocipede; both vehicles transported workers to rails or rail cars to make repairs.
The crown jewel of the museum is Steam Engine 202. This Locomotive was built in 1912 by the Baldwin Locomotive Works and it carried passengers and baggage between Baltimore and Hagerstown. It was retired in 1953. Totaling 77 feet in length, the engine weighs 415,000 pounds. Steam Engine 202 is the only Western Maryland road-type steam locomotive in existence.
In addition to the locomotive and its coal tender, eight cabooses are also on display.Our Visit
To our dismay, we found all the gates locked so we would have to another version of the Crewe Railroad Park with nobody here so we all resorted to shooting our pictures through the fence. Not the best solution but one that would work.
Point of Rocks is a historic passenger rail station on the MARC Brunswick Line between Washington, D.C., and Martinsburg, WV, located at Point of Rocks, Frederick County, Maryland. The station was built by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in 1873, and designed by E. Francis Baldwin. It is situated at the junction of the B&O Old Main Line (running to Baltimore) and the Metropolitan Branch (running to Washington, D.C.). The Met Branch also opened in 1873 and became the principal route for passenger trains between Baltimore, Washington and points west.
The main station building is a 2 1/2-story, triangular Gothic Revival with a four-story tower and a 1 1/2-story wing at the base. The tower has a pyramidal roof containing a dormer on each side. On top is a square cupola supporting a pyramidal peaked roof.
The station building itself is not open to the public and is used by CSX as storage and offices for maintenance of way crews. In 2008, new platforms and platform shelters were built for MARC commuters traveling east towards Washington DC, replacing older bus shelter-style structures which were erected in the mid-90's.
During the blizzard of 2010, the south side awning on the main building collapsed under the weight of record snow fall, and was later removed leaving half the building missing cover. In January 2011, work to rebuild the destroyed part of the structure began.Point of Rocks Railroad Station was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973, and reopened for the Maryland Rail Commuter Service, now called MARC, which established the Brunswick Line.
We drove from Point of Rocks in about forty-five minutes to Walkersville, following the excellent directions they gave us. We pulled into the parking lot and started to look around.
The Walkersville Southern Railroad runs track and structures originally built by the Frederick and Pennsylvania Line railroad. This railroad ran from Frederick, Md to the Pennsylvania-Maryland State line, or Mason-Dixon line near Kingsdale,PA. Chartered in 1867, the railroad started construction in 1869 and cost $868,687.50 ($2017=17,367,000). It opened October 8, 1872 and was subsequently leased to the Pennsylvania Railroad from January 1, 1875 and in July of that year, PRR formed a new division, the Frederick division to operate the rail line. In the spring of 1896, it was liquidated in a judicial sale to the Pennsylvania Railroad for 10% of its 1896 book value. Pennsylvania reorganized the railroad in December, 1896 as the Frederick and Northern Railroad Company. In March 1897, this new company was itself merged with other Pennsylvania-controlled railways (Littlestown Railroad and the Hanover and York Railroad Company) into the Hanover and York Railroad Company, chartered under the general laws of Pennsylvania and Maryland. In 1914, this railroad and the newly built Central Railroad of Maryland were then merged into the York, Hanover and Frederick Railway Company which remained a wholly owned stock subsidiary of the PRR into the creation of the PennDel company in December 31, 1953 and then the Penn Central merger in 1968 and then bankruptcy in 1970. The Frederick and Pennsylvania Line segment was transferred to the State of Maryland in 1982 for unpaid taxes.
One of the industries that fed the railroad during its earliest time of operations was the Lime Kiln in Walkersville. This was among the industries that fueled the need of the railroad, to ship fertilizer to farmers in and around the Walkersville region. The Frederick Secondary remained in the control of the Pennsylvania Railroad even into the creation of the Penn Central Railroad. The Walkersville Southern operates on part of the Penn Central's Frederick Secondary. Penn Central, then in bankruptcy, sold the line to the state of Maryland in 1972 after Hurricane Agnes washed out the bridge over the Monocacy River. The line remained dormant until 1980 when the Maryland Midland Railway began operations over the route between Walkersville north to Taneytown. South of Walkersville the right-of-way, devoid of freight customers, was overtaken by brush and weeds. Volunteers for the new Walkersville Southern began restoring the line in 1991. The State of Maryland awarded the company operation of the line south of Walkersville in 1993 and tourist trains began running to the Monocacy River in 1995. The bridge was rebuilt, completed in March 1996, and trains began crossing the river, 23 years after Agnes. In 1998, the line was rebuilt to its current terminus at Maryland Route 26 in Frederick. Although crossing Maryland Route 26 was in the original plan to reach potential freight customers in downtown Frederick, the rise in automobile traffic over Route 26 and the departure of potential customers from Frederick led to the eventual abandonment of any further restoration plans into the city. Current local government plans call for the old right-of-way south of Route 26 to be converted into a hiker-biker trail.
In November 2008, Maryland granted rights to operate three miles of right-of-way to the north, linking to the Maryland Midland Railway at North Glade Road. In 2013 the summer steam excursion was routed over a portion of the newly restored track. As of the January 1st, 2014 the north division has been restored.Operations
Today, the railroad runs two to three round trips daily on Saturdays and Sundays in May, June, September, and October; and on Saturdays only in July and August. They also host some special events, including some on weekends and during the off-season. In some cases individuals with their own equipment can use the right of way with prior permission or during selected special events.
The railroad typically operates unique industrial diesel locomotives, all rarely seen in today's modern railroading. In 2012, the railroad operated steam excursions for the first time using the Gramling Locomotive Works "Flagg Coal 75" an 0-4-0T tank engine. The 75's operation marked the first time a steam locomotive had operated on this railway since the Pennsylvania Railroad last ran steam over 60 years ago. In 2013, steam returned in the form of Lehigh Valley Coal 126, also owned by the Gramling family.Our visit
The first thing we did was take photographs of the Walkersville station.
We checked in at the reception desk, introduced ourselves and soon we were walking the display halls of this museum.National Capital Trolley Museum
The National Capital Trolley Museum (NCTM) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates historic trolleys for the public on a regular schedule. It is located at 1313 Bonifant Road, Colesville, Maryland.History
NCTM was incorporated on January 4, 1961, as the National Capital Historical Museum of Transportation, Inc. Progress was slow at first, but the Museum eventually combined efforts and streetcar collections with a group from Baltimore.
The organization found its first home in Robert E. Lee Park at Lake Roland in Baltimore, Maryland.
After efforts were thwarted by adjacent property owners, the group divided the collections in 1966. National Capital Trolley Museum moved to its present site in Colesville, Maryland, while the Baltimore Streetcar Museum was formed to focus on Baltimore transit.
The site was provided by Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, and DC Transit leased trolleys for a nominal cost. The organization raised $20,000 to build a car barn. Groundbreaking of the Colesville site began on November 20, 1965.
NCTM's original intention was to operate streetcars owned by DC Transit president O. Roy Chalk, but it was not until 1970 that Chalk donated several historic Washington streetcars. In the interim, the museum acquired a small fleet of European trams and a car from Johnstown, Pennsylvania.
NCTM ran its first streetcar in October 1969, and since then the museum has operated consistently over its one-mile line.
In the winter of 2008-2009, the Museum moved into three new buildings: a visitors' center, a display building for the streetcars, and a streetcar storage-and-maintenance building. Construction of the Intercounty Connector, (ICC) which crosses the Museum's former location, required the Museum to shift locations in the Park. The Museum reopened on Saturday, January 16, 2010.Education efforts
The Museum offers a variety of education programs and activities throughout the year. Each spring and fall, the Museum hosts school field trips by advance reservation. On some Saturday afternoons, visitors can also enjoy a story and craft time. Special summer programs are offered on Thursday and Friday from June 15 to August 15. Age-appropriate activities include: story time and craft, story and hands-on experience with trolley artifacts, and a role-playing exercise for older children.
Membership and funding A
As of 2008, 125 members and friends support the Museum with dues, donations and volunteer service. The Museum receives most of its money from admission fees and revenues from its gift shop. Other funding for a variety of projects is provided by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Montgomery County Heritage Tourism Alliance, the Montgomery County Historic Preservation Commission, and the Maryland Historical Trust. The State of Maryland, Montgomery County, and private donors provided capital funding support for the current relocation.Our visit
We started to look around these excellent
trolley displays. Among them were stories and photos of the
streetcars in the history of Washington D.C. The heyday of the
street cars on the city's streets occurred at the same time as
old Hollywood was in its heyday. This was the time Hollywood
was building its movie palaces. As a fan of these old glamor
movie palaces, I greatly enjoyed this exhibit.
We left the inside of the car barn and headed out through the trolley yard. What a great day to sit back and enjoy a ride on the Blackpool Transport Services Boat Car 606.
At the bottom of the hill there is a reversing loop to get the car pointed the right way back to the museum. We went to the left.
We returned to the inside of the Trolley Car Barn and would now see the museum's collection of trolley cars.
DC Transit 1101 St. Louis Car Company, built in 1937 Washington, D.C.
View of the Capital Traction Company 522 American Car Company, built in 1898 Washington, D.C. We all would like to thank the National Capital Trolley Museum for having us visit their museum today. It is a very unique trolley museum. We next made our way to Interstate 95 north to our next stop in Baltimore.