The San Bernardino History & Railroad Museum will hold the grand
opening on Sat July 12, 2008, 9am to 1pm, at the Santa Fe San
Bernardino Depot. The event is FREE and open to the public, and
especially to railroad employees, their families and retirees.
The City of San Bernardino obtained a grant which was turned over to
the City of San Bernardino Historical & Pioneer Society to establish
a museum in conjunction with the San Bernardino Railroad Historical
Society. The new San Bernardino History & Railroad Museum is being
set up in the former baggage room and REA office, on the ground
floor, between the waiting room and the old Wire Chief's Office.
This is toward the west end of the depot. The old baggage room has a
new, (2004), brick floor, good lighting, air conditioning, alarm
system and new paint.
Two firefighters. Steve Shaw, President, and Allen Bone, Vice
President, respectively of the City of San Bernardino Historical &
Pioneer Society hold the same positions with the new museum, and are
making great progress, with the help of volunteers. These two men
were responsible for the excellent fire fighting museum in San
Bernardino. Unfortunately the fire fighting museum closed due to the
building owner's divorce settlement.
The San Bernardino RR Historical Society has sent some interesting
artifacts and railroadiana from Redondo Jct to San Bernardino for
display in the new museum, including a large scale wooden model of an
SP 4-8-2 built by Santa Fe machinist George Meir, replica/spare
lighted 3751 number box built by Wayne Tucker, Santa Fe builders
plates from the William B. Garner Collection, and passenger uniforms from
Engr Hank J. Graham.
San Bernardino History & Pioneer Society has contributed a fully
restored horse drawn fire wagon, and hose reel, both from San
Bernardino. Some artifacts from the Santa Fe Shops Fire Dept will be
displayed. Two semaphore block signals, wig wags, baggage cart,
railroad lanterns, dining car memorabilia and other railroadiana are
already on hand with more coming.
San Bernardino Mayor Patrick Morris, who was once a Santa Fe
trainman, and comes from a Santa Fe family, is on record as wanting
to bring Santa Fe 3751 back home to San Bernardino. The Mayor has
met with the San Bernardino Railroad Historical Society, and reminded
SBRHS that the legal contract, whereby Santa Fe 3751 was turned over
to SBRHS, requires that 3751 be made available to the City of San
Bernardino once per year. This has happened only once, in 2004, when
the depot was re-dedicated. It was hoped 3751 could attend the
opening of the new San Bernardino History & Railroad Museum, but
SBRHS President Bob Kittel's quoted fee for operation of 3751 to San
Bernardino was much higher than what the City of San Bernardino was
able to spend. SBRHS has a policy of seeking a clear profit whenever
3751 is on public display, which is why sponsorships of such public
appearances are sought. Reality and politics aside, big steam certainly
costs money, but it sure is nice when we all get to enjoy seeing it in action.
The July 12th museum grand opening conflicts with the Santa Fe
Historical & Modeling Society 2008 Convention in Riverside, but only
for a few hours. I specifically asked if the date could be changed,
due to the conflict, but the City of San Bernardino set the date last
Fall, to commemorate the depot's 90th Anniversary. Apparently the
City fathers were not aware of the existence of the Santa Fe
Historical & Modeling Society, let alone the annual convention.
I plan to enjoy both events on Sat July 12th.
For info on SFH&MS Convention please see:
] You do not
have to be a member to attend! Chairman Gene Rutledge and Charlie
Schultz have been working hard on making the 2008 SFH&MS Convention
the best. The theme is the Green Fruit Express and the Santa Fe's
relationship to the citrus industry.