Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Visit to the Winnipeg Railway Museum

The Winnipeg Railway Museum is located in the
historic Union station.

The Winnipeg Railway Museum is dedicated to preserving Manitoba’s railway heritage. Located at historic Union Station, it shares space in the train shed with tracks used by VIA and is right beside the CN transcontinental mainline.

Although Winnipeg would not exist if it wasn’t for the railway, the Winnipeg Railway Museum doesn’t rank very high on the list of funding priorities for the provincial, municipal or federal governments. It is dependent on individual and corporate donations and private foundations to keep going—and on the dedicated work of volunteers.

If there was more funding, it could complete the restoration of more rolling stock, re-do the interior, and add better heating and cooling to the train shed. It might even be able to bring indoors some locomotives currently languishing outside in various parts of the city.

That said, the museum’s volunteers have done a great job—as you can see by the photos on this page.

The prize of the collection—the Countess of Dufferin, the first steam locomotive in Western Canada. (Arrived in Winnipeg Oct. 8, 1877.)

CNR 1900 (GMD1), built in 1958. It was the first of a series of passenger locomotives equipped with a steam generator. It’s stored serviceable.

Winnipeg Hydro #4. Built in October, 1927 by the Davenport Locomotive Works. It was used for freight and passenger service.

CP Rail Track inspection car M300 was built in Great Britain; it’s one of only five ever imported to Canada from that country.

City of Winnipeg track inspection car. This 1946 Packard was rebuilt by the CPR to run on rails. It was purchased by the Greater Winnipeg Water District Railway in 1953 for use on the that Railway’s line serving Winnipeg's water aqueduct between the Shoal Lake inlet and the city of Winnipeg.

This Mac B-1 Railbus was built in 1922 by the Mack International Motor Company of Allentown, Pa. for the Northern Pacific Railroad. Purchased by Winnipeg Hydro in 1929, it ran in regular service until 1962 from Pointe du Bois to Lac du Bonnet carrying freight, mail and passengers.

CNR #7188 is a combination car (passenger/baggage). It was built in 1919 as a Colonist passenger car and rebuilt into a combination car in 1955. It was retired in 1977.

Wide vision van (caboose in the U.S.).

CN Jordan spreader, built in 1911.

Nearby at The Forks, some other equipment is on display; the passenger cars house a candy store. These items do not belong to the museum.


Finally, the Manitoba Children's Museum, also at The Forks, is home to a CNR F unit. If you're nice, they may let you in to look at it without charge. Or you can pay the entrance fee and be a big kid in the cab, if you want!

Click here for more info about the Winnipeg Railway Museum.

1 comment:

  1. I wonder how many locomotives are on display at the Winnipeg railroad museum in Canada are there ?