Thursday, September 21, 2017

An 0-4-0 for the Northwest Railway Museum

Thursday, September 21, 2017 was a momentous day for the Northwest Railway Museum.  The first steam locomotive to be acquired in more than 40 years was moved to the Snoqualmie Valley.


Steam locomotive #7 was built in November 1918 by the H.K. Porter Company in Pittsburgh as builder’s number 6361.  Initially owned by the US Navy, it operated in Norfolk, Virginia, and later in Bremerton, Washington.  In 1952 the #7 was purchased by the Olympic Portland Cement Company for use at the cement plant in Bellingham.  In June 1956 that operation was purchased by the Permanente Cement Company who in July 1960 donated the locomotive to the City of Bellingham.  Bellingham placed the locomotive on a plinth in the Bloedel Donovan Park at the north end of Lake Whatcom where it has remained on exhibit ever since.  

Changing priorities for Bellingham Parks resulting in the #7’s donation to the Northwest Railway Museum.  And on September 21, it was moved by road to North Bend, WA.  A simple track ramp was constructed to allow the 7 to be winched onto a truck.  In Snoqualmie, it was connected to the Museum's railroad with a similar ramp and pulled off with locomotive 4024.


Locomotive 7 has been accepted into the Northwest Railway Museum's collection.  Plans are to perform basic preservation and some limit rehabilitation to allow the locomotive's use in an exhibit in time for its 100th anniversary.  While this work is underway, additional assessments will take place to establish if there are other future restoration scenarios.  However, for now, there are no immediate plans to operate the locomotive.

Thanks to the efforts of Bellingham Parks and Rec, Mike Hawkings Trucking, and volunteers from the Northwest Railway Museum, and the City of North Bend the #7 has been safely moved to the Snoqualmie Valley.  Please enjoy the highlights of this exciting day, and join us in thanking our many volunteers who made this possible!






























Monday, August 21, 2017

Glowing from Railroad Days 2017

The Northwest Railway Museum hosted the annual Snoqualmie Railroad Days August 18 - 20, 2017 in historic downtown Snoqualmie.  Thousands of people attended this community festival that included the Legends Car Club show, live music, Encompass children's activities, great food, quality vendors, children's activities, logging demonstrations, and more!  

Major sponsors included Safeway, the Snoqualmie Tribe, the Snoqualmie Casino, the City of Snoqualmie, Frankie's Pizza, and the Northwest Railway Museum.  The Snoqualmie Arts Commission supported art displays, and visual art demonstrations including a Plein Air Paint Out.  

Check out some scenes from this year's festival:























Friday, August 18, 2017

Snoqualmie Railroad Days 2017

Come and experience the excitement of an old-fashion town festival! The annual Snoqualmie Railroad Days is happening tonight, tomorrow and Sunday August 18 - 20, 2017.  There's live music, crafts, food, antique cars, trains, a parade and more!  Check out the event schedule for more details.  All Aboard!

Friday, August 11, 2017

New exhibit installed in Snoqualmie Depot


Dark wood frames
were chosen to blend
with the existing
wood work.
The Museum has just completed and installed the “Depot RE-Interpretation project” in the Snoqualmie Depot’s men’s waiting room. The 4Culture-funded project is an eight-panel exhibit on the history of the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway – the company that built both the original rail line to Snoqualmie and the Snoqualmie Depot.

Using historic photographs, maps, and railroad documents, the exhibit describes the process of building the railroad from Seattle to Snoqualmie, as well as several other lines, and the eventual absorption into the Northern Pacific Railroad. The final exhibit panel is all about the Snoqualmie Depot construction.
A combination of vertical and hori-zontal panels were used to get the most out of the available wall 
space.
The challenge with any exhibit is finding a balance between too much and not enough information. There is always more that can be said, but all authorities on exhibits say, “less is best.” So how do you tell the story without too many words? The strategy used with this exhibit was to utilize large font (48pt) for the key points of each panel and smaller font (22pt) for supplementary information for those interested in knowing more. Part of that strategy is also to use only around 50 words to make main points, so the bulk of your text is in the supplementary section of content.
Seating was removed from under 
the exhibit panels to encourage guests to walk up to the panel to investigate the small details and images up close.
The exhibit is in the men’s waiting room at the west-end of the Snoqualmie Depot and can be viewed Monday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm. Guests arriving to purchase train tickets on the weekend can enjoy the exhibit while they wait in line. In addition, since the Depot is free to visit, so is the exhibit. The companion website for this exhibit will be available by September 1st at TrainMuseum.org.

A 4Culture Heritage Special Projects Grant funded this exhibit. 4Culture is the Cultural Development Authority for King County, Washington. Using Lodging Tax and 1% for Art funds, 4Culture has four program areas to serve the county: arts, heritage, historic preservation, and public art. For more informaton on 4Culture, visit their website at 4Culture.org.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Chapel car ABCs

Chapel car 5 Messenger of Peace has continued to receive a variety of restorative efforts, and beginning last summer lettering was added.  Original lettering was gold leaf applied in a gilding process but most of the restored lettering has been applied with a gold paint.  Unfortunately, it is a slow a deliberate process that involved more than 150 letters.  However the letterboard has been completed thanks to support from the American Baptist Home Mission Societies and the American Baptist Historical Society.

Original lettering was traced from the car during the rehabilitation process.  Those original tracings are now part of the car's permanent record, but were used to create digital images.  Steve at Issaquah Sign (he also did the lettering for the Weyerhaeuser locomotive 1) prepared the files and procured the letter mask.  He used a vinyl cutter to transfer the letters and a transfer tape to hold everything together.  The masking was applied to the car, lettering base exposed and sanded, the lettering applied with a gold paint, and then the final lettering was exposed.  Check out these sequential photos taken during the application process.