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Olive Dennis – Innovating the Passenger Experience

Jane Austin. Susan B. Anthony. Rosa Parks. All three of these women were pioneers. Austin was one of the first widely published female authors; Anthony led suffragettes fighting for the right to allow women to vote; And Parks is a female icon in the civil rights movement. One name not as well known in history…

Taking Trains into the Future

When you think back to a time that was not only nostalgic but filled with hope and innovation, most people flash back to the 1950s and 1960s. More and more households owned a car, had a television set, attended sock hops, and by the end of the decade we were looking towards outer space. Postwar…

The Art of Locomotive Design and Color

Today, when asked what a train looks like, most would likely answer with the description of a large, powerful, and blocky diesel locomotives, while others might describe a large, black steam locomotive. Go back 50 – or even 150 years – and that image would dramatically change. When railroads expanded beyond the English coal mines…

Notable Presidential Trains

a group of people standing in front of a computer

Before the days of Air Force One, when it came to presidential travel, the highest office in the union traveled by train. Using the rails to make campaign stops, visit with dignitaries, and attend to official business, trains played a huge role in the office of president. From Lincoln to Bush, there are many notable…

All Aboard! Next Stop – The White House

a vintage photo of a group of people posing for the camera

June 6, 1833—President Andrew Jackson, (of twenty-dollar bill fame) boards a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad train in Ellicott’s Mills, Maryland. He is off for a 14-mile leisure trip to Baltimore. His trip also marks the first time the President of the United States rode a train. In this election year that finds candidates jetting to…

Tidbits from the Dining Car

The Dining Car Is Open In the beginning of railroads, distances were short, locomotives were feeble; There was no such thing as a dining car. Travelers brought their own provisions or ate quickly at station restaurants during extended train stops. In the 1850s, some small Eastern roads were reported to have installed food counters in…

Beyond Your Diner Plate

The Pullman porter has helped you aboard one of the Union Pacific’s famous “City of … trains” —the City of Los Angeles— and shown you to your roomette in the sleeping car Pacific Shores, the second to last car in the train. Your personal items arranged in your roomette and decide to wander to the…

One Step Ahead of the Wrecking Ball

When was the last time you saw, no, experienced, a real, live, steam locomotive? Some of you may never have had the pleasure. Others among us will remember working aboard these fire-breathing beasts. The steam locomotive has long-vanished from the American landscape. Trains, railroads in general, are no longer part of what we experience every…