Trains in Motion

Program note: registration is still open for the Archives without Tears workshop to be hosted by Somerset Historical Center on July 21-22. The two-day workshop features practical advice on archival collections care and management, plus lunches (all for $25). Contact Joshua Stahlman at the Pennsylvania State Archives for more info.

Last month, I visited the refurbished “Trains in Motion” exhibit at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania in Strasburg. Part of the museum’s ongoing series of changing exhibits focused on images of railroads in art and culture, the exhibit will be up through December of this year. “Trains in Motion” is effectively a timeline of cinema history, spanning films from the Lumière Brothers’ Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat (1895) to Unstoppable (set for release this November, starring Denzel Washington and filmed—in part—along former Pennsylvania Rail Road lines).

Four screens within the exhibit feature highlights of train-centric films that you may or may not be familiar with. Movie posters and stills create a great visual sweep, and a variety of props and objects provide an added dimension for visitors. Be sure not to miss “Trains in Motion,” which is located in the Museum’s second floor gallery.

Prop from Hello, Dolly! on loan from Strasburg Rail Road

The staff and volunteers at the Railroad Museum, perhaps inspired by this exhibit, have recently been making great use of moving images to document their work and show what goes on behind the scenes. Of current interest is the restoration of the PRR No. 460 locomotive (also known as the “Lindbergh Engine”).

More video of the restoration shop and other stuff going on at the Railroad Museum is available on Facebook or the museum website. And be sure to check out the calendar of events for programs coming up later this summer and fall.


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