Iowa has a number of charming railroad destinations where antique railroad locomotives are displayed. Oelwein's very own Railway Museum, the Hub City Heritage, was opened in June 1987. The museum consists of old school locomotives, a yard tower, railway express building, and an actual pump handcar.
The primary objective of the Hub City Heritage is to establish and maintain the railway museum for the education and the enjoyment of the public in Oelwein area, and preserve treasured artifacts.
Oelwein was home to Chicago Great Western Railway, (CGW) until the early 1960's. During that time, Iowa was the hub for certain railways, with CGW dominating the competition, dirrectly connecting the state to as many as five others. Hub city heritage acquired the railroad building by 1989. The museum buys railroad equipment on an ongoing basis. The staff is working hard to preserve the history of Chicago Great Western (CGW) in Iowa.
As of today, the most well-known locomotives at the Railway Hub Heritage Museum are Minnesota Transfer (MTFR) 62, the CGW Caboose, and the Rock Island Caboose. The MTFR 62 is a diesel switcher locomotive of the Minnesota Transfer Railway. This beautiful engine was built in Schenectady, New York in 1941. The American Locomotive Company (ALCo), which ruled the production until 1969, designed MTFR. Other well-known attractions of the museum include the wooden Rock Island Caboose, which was built around 1914, and the Chicago Great Western caboose, built around 1960.
The railway museum also has a gift shop with a tremendous collection of railroad memorabilia. For more information about the museum, please click here, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 319-283-1939.
Museum Hours: The railway museum is open on Sundays from May through September: 1 pm to 5 pm. As part of Oelwein “Heritage Days” each year. The museum also invites in visitors during the extended window of 9 am to 4 pm on weekends.
Hub City Heritage Railway Museum,
26 Second Ave. SW.,
Come, see the historic railroad museum with your friends and family, and understand Iowa’s proud railroad tradition.
* Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons.