In the Hub City Heritage Railway Museum, located in Oelwein, Iowa, one can look at railroad memorabilia from the Chicago Great Western Railway. The depot has been restored and in it are refurbished railroad cars.
The most permanent and significant change in transportation was the development of the railroad. This enabled people to travel quickly and safely for a reasonable amount of money. The usual charge was two to three cents per mile and the tickets were good for three to six months. Trains usually offered a choice of a sleeping berth or a seat in the coach cars. For the wealthy, the luxurious Palace Car was available, with plush carpet, personal gaslights, and a large sleeping berth. Most passengers took advantage of the parlor car to socialize and play cards. If they could afford it, people ate in the comfortable dining car. If they were poorer, they provided their own entertainment and food. For years northeast Iowa farmers shipped their cattle and wheat directly to Chicago by rail.
Admission – None
Directions – Hub City Heritage Corp. Railway Museum, 26 Second Avenue, P. O. Box 300, Oelwein, IA 50662. The museum is located south of City Hall.
Hours – 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., weekends and holidays between Memorial Day and Labor Day, or by appointment
Credit Cards – None
Phone – (429) 283-3197 or (319) 283-4589