Train Display

La Grange Railroad Museum
to showcase newly painted cars

Event planned for Nov. 3 to include
free tours of rail cars

LA GRANGE, Ky. (November 2018) – The railroad has been a major focus in Oldham County, Ky., since the mid-1800s. With a railroad track running up to 30 trains a day directly down La Grange’s Main Street, the county’s residents and tourists have watched thousands of railway cars carrying coal, freight, cattle and passengers for more than 150 years.

Photo courtesy of Bob Widman

This caboose recently received a fresh coat of paint. It is on display at the La Grange Railroad Museum.

This made it the perfect spot for train enthusiast Robert Widman of Henry County to create the La Grange Railroad Museum, located at 412 E. Main St. in La Grange, Ky. As chairman of the Ohio Valley Railroad Historical Foundation, he leased the basement of the La Grange Train Depot in 2011 and launched the free admission museum with one engine car, local memorabilia and a small section of track he and his friends laid by hand.
Today, the museum has grown to display five rail cars, including the engine, a dining car, a flatcar, a jitney and a caboose. The indoor space has expanded into the upstairs of the Train Depot as well, showcasing even more historical Oldham County railroad memorabilia.

Photo provided

Bob Widman, chairman of the Ohio Valley Railroad Historical Foundation, stands in front of the newly painted dining car, part of the train car display at the La Grange Railroad Museum, 412 E. Main St.

After months of painting the cars to return them to their original colors, an awards ceremony and open house is being planned from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3, to thank the volunteers for their work and to display the renovations. Visitors will enjoy live music (weather permitting) and free tours of the museum and throughout all of the train cars. A food truck will serve chili, hot dogs and refreshments.
The dining car is a favorite for museum visitors. Built in 1929, it still has its original stainless steel kitchen equipment, tables and blinds on the windows. Decadently decorated, it provides an immersive experience for today’s guests to imagine passenger train travel in the early 20th century.
The hand-laid track was a labor of love for Widman and his fellow train enthusiasts. He tells the story of its installation with a chuckle. “There were probably a dozen men, and we did it the old fashioned way. We were all there with sledgehammers putting it down.”
Visitors can tour the museum and the train cars from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday.

• For more information, visit the website www.LagrangeRailroadMuseum.org.

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