Guests to the Railroad Museum might soon be wondering why a number of automobiles are on display alongside locomotives.
California State Parks and the California State Railroad Museum & Foundation – in partnership with the California Automobile Museum — will debut an eye-catching and new “A World on Wheels” exhibit on Friday, May 26.
In addition, interested guests can enjoy a one-day-only Shuttle Train Ride to and from the two nearby museums (for a small fee) on Saturday, May 27. This special Shuttle Train will be pulled by the steam-powered Granite Rock 10 locomotive.
“A World on Wheels” Exhibit
Located alongside impressive full-scale locomotives in the Railroad Museum’s spacious Roundhouse, five vintage automobiles will be on display as part of the “A World on Wheels” exhibit. The display will highlight how innovative train technology and design paved the way for the emergence of the automobile that quickly surged in popularity for passenger travel.
The five automobiles on loan from the California Automobile Museum will include the following: a 1914 Stanley Steam Car, a 1932 Ford Model B Station Wagon, a 1937 Cadillac Series 60 Sedan, a 1940 Lincoln Zephyr and a 1953 Chevrolet Bel Air.
Railroad Museum visitors will learn how train technology and design drove that of early steam-powered automobiles. For instance, the first station wagon was a direct product of train travel – the vehicles were custom-built to transport people and luggage to and from train stations. As automobiles increased in popularity, the focus of railroads shifted to the transportation of cargo (that coincidentally included automobiles).
The new “A World on Wheels” exhibit will remain on display through September 4, 2017.
Shuttle Train Rides
To further appreciate the enduring connections between train and automobile travel, special one-day-only Shuttle Train Rides will be available for interested guests to transport them between the California State Railroad Museum and nearby California Automobile Museum.
With stops for loading and unloading at either end, steam-powered shuttle train rides will depart the Central Pacific Passenger Station in Old Sacramento at 11:10 a.m., 12:10 p.m., 1:10 p.m., 2:10 p.m., 3:10 p.m. and 4:10 p.m. and stop at the R Street crossing about five to six minutes later (which is just a short walk to the Automobile Museum on Front Street).
In addition, the Automobile Museum will have “Road Crew” classic cars available at the R Street Crossing to transport any guests who need assistance.
Tickets for the special Shuttle Train Ride cost $3 per person and include shuttle rides back and forth (Shuttle Train Ride times do not need to be specified). Plus, Shuttle Train Ride ticket holders can enjoy $2 off admission prices at both museums for the day. Shuttle Train Ride tickets are available online and on-site at both locations.
Note that the Railroad Museum’s regular weekend excursion trains are running that day as usual and will not be affected by the Shuttle Train Rides.
For more information about the “A World on Wheels” exhibit, the Shuttle Train Rides or the California State Railroad Museum in general, please call 916-445-5995 or visit californiarailroad.museum. For more information about the California Automobile Museum, please call 916-442-6802 or visit calautomuseum.org.
Photo courtesy of Joe Balestrini