Granges railroad museum
is becoming a reality with real trains
caboose may be arriving soon
to accompany engine
Helen E. McKinney
LA GRANGE, Ky. (October 2011) The Railroad
Museum project in La Grange may get a boost with the possible addition
of a caboose if funding can become available. Future goals call for
many ways to expand the project and establish a museum of which the
town can be proud.
The Ohio Valley Railroad Historical Foundation Inc. is behind the push
to create a Railroad Museum on the lower level of the La Grange Train
Depot at 412 E. Main St. The foundation currently uses the lower level
for displays and meetings. The La Grange Train Depot also serves as
the home of the Oldham County Chamber & Economic Development offices
on its upper level.
by Helen McKinney
steam locomotive The Flying
Duchess has been parked for permanent
display in downtown La Grange.
The foundation is now looking at two different cabooses,
said Bob Widman, a foundation member. One is owned by a woman in Fairdale,
Ky., in which the down payment would be $5,000 and moving costs would
be $3,100, he said.
The second caboose is owned by Padgett Inc. in New Albany, Ind. This
one costs $5,500 and is in better condition, said Widman.
Moving costs would run about $1,000 to $1,500. Were working
to try to get it at a little more reasonable price, or donated.
The foundation was instrumental in bringing a steam locomotive, the
Flying Duchess, to La Grange in late August. It was set up at the La
Grange Train Depot. The locomotive was moved by Adkins Movers, a company
located in Louisville and owned by Matt and Cory Malone.
Were also looking at getting a dining car, box car and maybe
a non-working diesel engine, said Widman. For now, the caboose
would be placed behind the Flying Duchess.
The steam locomotive has created quite a bit of interest and will permanently
remain where it is due to strict CSX rules. It is a display item
only, said Widman.
Steps have been taken so far to weatherize the steam engine,
said foundation secretary George Corral. It is debatable whether the
Flying Duchess will be repaired over the winter months. The issue
we have to consider now is a shortage of manpower, he said. Individuals
with expertise, knowledge, experience and mechanical aptitude are needed.
The steam locomotive is on loan for 20 years from the Louisville Harrods
Creek & Westport Railway Foundation. There is an option to transfer
the ownership to the foundation at any time.
Plans call for a sign to be placed in front of the Flying Duchess depicting
an 18x24-inch embossed photograph of the steam locomotive in a sheet
The foundation wants to extend its mission statement and provide a historical
perspective of trains and the L&N railroad in La Grange. We
want people to understand what the railroad was like and the part local
people played in it, Corral said.
The project to establish a Railroad Museum has been in existence for
about six years. The addition of a steam engine is relatively new, said
Corral. The original purpose was to put together a museum to provide
information on the region (Ohio Valley).
Linda Goin, executive director of Discover Downtown La Grange, the towns
Main Street Program, said that the organization backs this project and
the establishment of a railroad museum would go beyond tourist attraction
status. The center could be used for educational purposes, meetings
and a resource for train groups, she said.
What is needed now is money and manpower. The foundation is soliciting
membership and will meet on Oct. 3 at the La Grange Train Depot. The
group will possibly meet more often if needed. There is no member fee
to join the foundation.
For information, contact Bob Widman at (502)
Back to October 2011