Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Field Trip!: Amtrak's 40th Anniversary Train

©2011 Boston to a T
 On Saturday Aaron and I decided to go on one of our crazy field trips. This trip took us down to Providence Rhode Island to visit Amtrak's 40th Anniversary exhibit train.

Since 1971 Amtrak has carried millions of passengers across the nation. They have carried families on vacation and men and woman on business trips all while showing them what America has to offer. For their 40th anniversary Amtrak put together a special exhibition train that would travel the entire country and show the public how this company has prospered. So far the train, which departed from Amtrak headquarters at Union Station in Washington D.C., has traveled along the entire Northeast Corridor. After it leaves Providence the next stop will be South Station in Boston and then head up to Vermont.

 The train itself is quite magnificent. It totals 510' in length and it consists of a GE Genesis P-40 locomotive., a GM F40PH Non Powered Control Unit (this allows the train to operate in either direction without having to be turned around), three refurbished 1950's baggage cars, a former Pacific Bend sleeper car, and a reconfigured Amfleet Cafe car. Each car was handpicked out of storage by Amtrak to be part of this exhibition. They were also extensively refurbished before heading out on this trip. The cars that received the largest reformation were the baggage cars, which were transformed into display cars. Crews added new display cases, lights, electrical outlets, and HVAC systems.

Aaron Sitting with one of
the manequins
The exhibits on the train were nothing short of incredible. The cars had thousands of nostalgic photos and pamphlets in display cases. They had mannequins modeling crew uniforms from the 70's till today and tables displaying different Amtrak china. The train also had some interactive exhibits. One had five different locomotive horns that allowed you to push a button and see how the tones changed over the years. There was also one that let you see, up close, how a pantograph works and the difference between the catenary wire between Boston and New Haven and New Haven and New York. My overall favorite exhibit on the entire train though was all of the Amtrak Advertisements from over the years.

Pieces of Amtrak advertising ranged from small buttons and bumper stickers to huge billboard posters.

Overall, this was not only the most unique museum I have ever had the privilege to visit but also one of the most informative. Amtrak truly is one of the companies that has truly defined itself in America. Even though they have had their fare share of problems and scrutiny they have still managed to move thousands of passengers everyday on their 21,000 miles of track!


  1. USA makes progress in different fields. Its train service provides facilities like best essay writing services to the millions of people. This provides comfort to the all kind of people. This Amtrak's make field trip for all over the country on its 40th anniversary. This show the remarkable achievement for the train services.

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