train cars coming soon
to downtown La Grange site
plan to bring in
a caboose and dining car
Helen E. McKinney
LA GRANGE, Ky. (November 2012) In a town known
for its railroad tracks running down Main Street and trains that roll
through daily, La Granges efforts of getting a permanent caboose
and dining car for a train museum is like the icing on the cake. After
waiting for a very long time, supporters of a train museum hope these
two railway cars will soon roll into town.
by Helen E. McKinney
site at 412 E. Main St. in
La Grange, Ky., is being readied
as the site of two new train cars
that may arrive in early November.
The Flying Duchess is displayed there.
Weve been laying the track, said Bob
Widman, director of the Ohio Valley Historical Railroad Foundation.
The foundation has had plans for some time to establish a train museum
in the basement of the former La Grange Train Depot, located near the
railroad tracks at 412 E. Main St. The depot serves as the home of the
Oldham Chamber & Economic Development offices on its upper level.
Weve been notified that we have both a caboose and a dining
car, Widman said. Foundation members want to bring both cars to
town at the same time so they do not have to use a big crane twice.
La Grange city workers have been laying sidewalks in the area, a project
that has held up the arrival of the train cars. But members arent
complaining. Sidewalks will only make it easier to get to the railway
Foundation members hope the tracks will be completed for the two cars
in early November. Once completed, they plan to bring in a circa 1951-1953
L&N bay window caboose, said Widman.
The caboose was donated to the foundation by James Padgett Sr., owner
of Padgett Inc. in New Albany, Ind.
Its in excellent shape, said Widman.
Following that will be an 83-foot dining car that was part of a series
of 36-seat dining cars built by American Car & Foundry from 1921
to 1930. Prospect, Ky., residents Lynn and Bob Jones have donated the
dining car, which they renovated in 1991.
Currently, a six-foot toll motor, or jitney, rests on the tracks. This
six-cylinder engine contains a seat and steering wheel and sits on the
rails to move boxcars. Also on permanent display is the Flying Duchess,
a steam locomotive that created lots of interest when it came to town
earlier this year.
The foundation has been using the basement of the old La Grange Train
Depot for meeting space. The members also volunteered to keep
some equipment in the basement for the Kentucky Railway Museum since
it flooded, Widman said.
Once the equipment is moved and the basement re-arranged, wed
like to build a large, O-scale layout, Widman said. Its
what we wanted to do all along but had no room.
Foundation members and city officials hope the train cars will provide
a new attraction for tourists, especially those interested in train
Back to November 2012