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The Flying Scotsman Steam Train Comes Home – Presented by Total Content Digital

The Flying Scotsman Steam Train Comes Home – Presented by Total Content Digital

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by - April 9, 2017 at 10:39 pm

Categories: Vintage Steam Trains   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Yesteryear comes to life at Warren County Antiques Fair and Festival in Harmony Township

Yesteryear comes to life at Warren County Antiques Fair and Festival in Harmony Township
Among the featured items on display at the Warren County Antiques Fair and Festival is one of the machines that helped build America, an engine from the Blue Mountain Gas and Steam Engine Group. HARMONY TWP. — The Warren County…

Read more on The Warren Reporter

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by - September 14, 2010 at 10:34 pm

Categories: Vintage Steam Engines   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Austin Steam Trains: History Comes to Life

Steam trains are an important part of Texasâ??s proud history. When war with Mexico ended, the government of the newly-formed Republic of Texas sought to encourage investment. Improving transportation by building a railroad system seemed a logical choice, and once Texas attained statehood, several railway companies began work on constructing a rail system to serve the needs of the growing Texas population.

In 1853, the Buffalo Bayou, Brazos, and Colorado Railway began offering rail service between Harrisburg and Stafford, a distance of about twenty miles. This gave the company the distinction of being both the first railroad in Texas and the second railroad west of the Mississippi. As the rail system expanded, so did the risk to passengers; at the dangerous bridge crossing the Brazos river, for example, the conductor allowed travelers to disembark and take a ferry across rather than brave crossing the bridge on board the train.

The Southern Pacific Railroad agreed to begin construction on a line running from Caddo, near San Antonio, to Marshall, due east of Dallas, Texas. When this route was first completed in 1858, the steam locomotive intended to run the line had not yet arrived. However, in order to retain its state charter, the Southern Pacific Railroad was required by written agreement to provide rail service between these two cities. Rather than wait for the locomotive to arrive, the Southern Pacific Railroad opted to use ox-drawn rail carts to transport goods on the newly-laid rails.

In Austin, the train system was essential to move goods transported on the Colorado River to inland destinations. When Austin was named the capital city of Texas, the need for swift transportation increased substantially, and the first railroad into Austin was completed by the Houston and Texas Central Railroad company in 1871. This first steam train line was the beginning of the intricate system that connected Austin with the rest of Texas and the United States.

Today, steam trains no longer grace the old railroad lines. But you can still experience the history and adventure of riding the rails on an old fashioned steam train. The Austin Steam Train Association offers three-hour train rides every Saturday, recreating the historical experience of traveling through rural Texas by train. The original steam engine, the Southern Pacific 786, was manufactured in New York in August 1916. While it is currently being restored to working condition, the train association is using a diesel-powered Alco Diesel 442 locomotive to pull its vintage passenger cars.

The journey begins in Cedar Park, a suburb of Austin, Texas, and winds its way through historic Texas Hill Country, stopping along the way at the 1912 Bertram train depot. The trainâ??s classic passenger cars offer three different levels of service, from Coach to First Class Pullman Lounge. The Coach service comes closest to the original rail experience, but lack the modern amenities of air conditioning and heating. Of course, the windows can be opened for better ventilation and natural cooling in summer. The Excursion Class and First Class Pullman Lounge cars offer air conditioning, heat, and other amenities for less adventurous travelers. If you are interested in chartering a car, the Boonesborough Lounge offers privacy and luxury for your special occasion.

Reservations are recommended, but tickets are usually available for purchase at the boarding area on the day of your journey as well. The Austin Steam Train Association offers riders the chance to travel back in time, making Texas history come to life for railway enthusiasts and tourists alike.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by - September 16, 2009 at 12:35 pm

Categories: Vintage Steam Trains   Tags: , , , , ,