Why did it take us so long to visit the B&O Railroad Museum
in Baltimore, Maryland? This place is great! By visiting in December, we also had an extra treat of also enjoying the special event Holiday Festival of Trains and Toys. The B&O Railroad Museum has three buildings you can tour which includes the Roundhouse, Annex Building, and the Baltimore & Ohio Passenger Car Works. The yard around those facilities also contains a good number of different rolling stock and locomotives.
The first thing you are likely to encounter on a trip to the museum are all the railroad cars and trains in the parking area of the museum. You may see the B&O No. 3684. This was the first 380 EMD model GP-40 which was put into service on the B&O railroad back in November of 1966. It was restored in 2006. B&O number 633 is a General Motors EMD SW900 switcher. Number 6607 is a EMD GP-9. The Reading 2101
T1 class 4-8-4, which was renamed “American Freedom Train #1”, sits in the yard. She was the first to pull the American Freedom Train
on the East Coast during America’s Bicentennial. Damaged severally by fire in 1979, she now sits “cosmetically” restored.
Chasing textures and patinas are always a fun thing to do for photographers. The weathered and rusted rolling stock that sit outside at the B&O Museum make great subject matter. A 1923 Fruit Growers Express Company (FGEX) refrigerator car’s (No. 32757) weathered yellow paint fascinated me. The large B&O X215 MOW Crane Car sat still as I snapped away. The stainless steal skin of the B&O Number 1961 RDC self-propelled pocket streamliner screamed “photograph me!”
Entering through the B&O Annex Building and moving straight to the Roundhouse, we were very impressed with how bright it was inside this wonderfully restored building. The multi-levels of windows allowed plenty of light to shine on the displays beneath.
You might think of trains as a guy thing but my wife enjoyed herself here as well. I could always find her smiling throughout our stay at the B&O Railroad Museum.
There are many historic steam trains on display in the roundhouse. After all, the B&O railroad was the “Birthplace of American Railroading”. Here you might find: a replica built in 1927 of Peter Cooper’s “Tom Thumb”, Atlantic 0-4-0 Grasshopper rebuilt in 1892, B&O Locomotive Number 8 “John Hancock” 0-4-0 built in 1836, and a Lafayette 4-2-0 replica.
Other steam engines include: 1905 GC&E Number 1 “Shay” locomotive, A.J. Cromwell Number 545 2-8-0, B&O Number 305 “Camel” 4-6-0, Cumberland Valley Railroad (CVRR) “The Pioneer” 2-2-2T, and B&O Number 57 Memnon” 0-8-0.
Exiting the roundhouse and moving beyond the train loading platform you will find the B&O Passenger Car Works. This building is packed with even more engines and rolling stock. On our trip we saw the C&O Number 490 4-6-4 Hudson (streamlined), C&O Number 377 4-6-0 Ten Wheeler, B&O Number 4500 2-8-2 A (light), the huge C&O Number 1604 “Allegheny” 2-6-6-6, B&O Number 5300 “President Washington” 4-6-2 Pacific, and many more.
While the B&O Railroad Museum has a nice model train layout housed in a passenger car year round, The Holiday Festival of Trains and Toys brought out many more local model train enthusiasts to display their setups. It was a great way to enjoy the holiday season.
We were so impressed with the B&O railroad museum that we became members
. Becoming a member allows you free access to the museum and train rides all year long. You can bet we will be back to visit the museum often. Check out more of our photos over on our photo site: http://photos.bgcustoms.biz