Sunday, May 3, 2015

National Train Day - Toledo

Yesterday I decided to head down to Toledo.  They were hosting a National Train Day at the train station there.  I was kind of interested because I heard that they were going to have a couple heritage units.  Since I don't get many chances to get pictures of heritage units, it would be a good opportunity.
 National Train Day was started by Amtrak in 2008 as a way to spread information about Amtrak and trains in general.  Events are hosted at many Amtrak stations across the country as well as a few railroad museums.  Because of a scheduling conflict in 2008, the Train Day in Toledo was hosted a week before everyone else.  This has become a tradition.
 This Heritage Unit ended up passing on the tracks behind the station but I wasn't really in a great position to catch it.  The Savannah and Atlanta Railway was formed in 1906 when a railroad was constructed that connected Savannah to Newington, Georgia.  This railroad was originally known as the Brinson Railroad after it's founder, George Brinson.  Eventually, he acquired the Savannah Valley Railway but ran out of money at that time.  It was taken over by a bank, but Brinson retained the Presidency.  In 1914, the railroad was renamed the Savannah and Atlanta.  In 1951, the railroad was acquired by the Central of Georgia and operated as a subsidiary of the Southern Railroad until 1971.  The Southern in turn merged with the Norfolk and Western to become Norfolk Southern.
 Amtrak was formed in 1971 as a way to continue passenger service in the United States. 
They had some cars set up that show the history of Amtrak.  It is almost like a traveling museum. One of the earlier Amtrak uniforms.  For some reason, it reminds me of an airline stewardess uniform.
 An example of an Amtrak Policeman.  They typically patrol the tracks that Amtrak owns as well as some of their larger stations.
 They had pictures that showed each of their main routes.  I kind of liked this one for the Zephyr.
 This shows all of their routes in the Midwest.
 Sadly, it was well after this picture was taken that I realized I was on a setting where the pictures would be a bit on the overexposed side.  Fortunately, the main part of the subject looks fine but the sky looks pretty washed out.  I kind of like the effect somewhat.
 One of the engines they had there was an engine that appeared on this blog before.  I call it the LEET engine.  If you do any sort of online gaming, you would understand why.
 They had this particular engine opened up so that you could see the insides.  It's amazing how much space there is in one of these.
 While not a Norfolk-Southern Heritage unit per se, this one is used to advocate for the railroads.
 I believe the GoRail group is a group that advocates for the Railroads.  Of course, they tell the advantages of the railroads.  While not quite as efficient as shipping stuff by ship, railroads are quite efficient.
 After I realized that my settings were off, I switched to a more normal mode.  I like the pictures a little bit more.  This particular engine is one that Amtrak uses to salute our veterans.  I think it looks pretty cool and I wish they would use some of their heritage units on the Wolverine more often.
 The GoRail engine again.
 A not so washed out picture of the Ann Arbor Railroad Engine.
 As I said, there was an active track behind the station.  This is one of the Norfolk-Southern trains that was passing by.
 It was accompanied by a Union Pacific Engine.  Sadly, this engine looks like it has seen better days but still, I love this scheme.
 It passes under a bridge.  It looks like they were allowing people up on this bridge.
 They also had some superliner cars set up.  I didn't really need to tour these since I've been on them a few times now.
 A plaque outside the station showing the lines that used to pass through.
 A plaque dedicated to the Central Union Terminal.
The Central Union Terminal was built in 1950 by the New York Central.  It was the last of their great train stations (although it doesn't look like one of the grand stations).  During the 1950s and 60s it was used by four railroads:  The New York Central, Baltimore and Ohio, The Chesapeake and Ohio and Wabash.  When Amtrak took over, there were as many as 6 trains going through here but in 2005 they discontinued mail service.  I think now there is the Lake Shore Limited and Capitol Limited.

Despite it's modern look, it's a nice station on the inside.  The benches have tributes to prior rail lines.

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