Lincoln Train Museum in Gettysburg, PA (and other train stuff)

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July 16, 2012 9:56 AM

This past weekend, I took a trip to Lancaster and the Philadelphia area to visit the Stoogeum (3 Stooges museum), and along the way, stopped in Gettysburg to visit the Lincoln Train Museum on Friday.  It is a nice little museum with some model trains, real train memorabilia, and a simulated train ride that recreates Abraham Lincoln's train ride from D.C. to Gettysburg to deliver his famous Gettysburg Address.  Photography was allowed, so I snapped a few shots:

 

LTM_01

 

LTM_02

 

The "passenger car" below is the theater where they present the simulated train ride.

LTM_03

 

LTM_04

 

LTM_05

 

Below is one of two layouts.  This one is static.

LTM_06

 

LTM_07

 

LTM_08

 

This layout is operating (by push buttons for kids) and has a couple of loops of O gauge and one loop of standard gauge.

LTM_09

 

LTM_10

 

 

On Saturday, after leaving the Stoogeum, we took the short drive down to visit Nicholas Smith Trains, where I managed to find something to buy on both floors.

 

NS_1

 

NS_2

 

NS_3

 

Andy

 

TCA, LRRC, LCCA, Atlas Golden Spike (Charter Member), MTHRRC, LOTS, Pittsburgh Independent Hi-Railers - "Diesels represent the job, steam represents the adventure!"

 
 
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NS_3
 
 
 
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July 16, 2012 10:46 AM

Thanks for the pictures of the Lincoln Train Museum. We were regulars in the Gettysburg area for quite a few years and had the opportunity to visit the museum on a number of occasions. Since it is not lettered at the present time, folks often wonder about the heritage of the caboose on the museum grounds. It is the former Maryland & Pennsylvania 2005.

 

I've seen recent advertisements indicating the business is for sale but I don't know if anything's come of it yet.

 

Bob 

 
 
 
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July 16, 2012 4:13 PM

I called them a couple of months ago and was told they had a handshake agreement to sell that might be closed by 7/10/12.  They said they would call me back if it fell through, but I have not heard anything.  I misplaced the number I had for them.  Did you see any signs indicating if it was still for sale?  The price was not unreasonable for the property.

 

 
 
 
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July 16, 2012 4:27 PM

I didn't see any signs that indicated the business or the property was for sale.

 

Andy

 

TCA, LRRC, LCCA, Atlas Golden Spike (Charter Member), MTHRRC, LOTS, Pittsburgh Independent Hi-Railers - "Diesels represent the job, steam represents the adventure!"

 
 
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July 16, 2012 4:45 PM

Perhaps it has changed hands already as planned, then.  There were paper (home-printed 8.5x11) signs on the front door as well as some of the interior doors (the one you exit through to get back to the gift shop area) indicating that the museum was for sale when I was there 3-4 months ago.

 

I think it could really benefit from a more train-specific gift shop, too.  I came primed to buy something with my son, who loves trains, and all we found were the same G-Burg souvenirs you can find anywhere else on the main drag through town.

 

Had they any Lionel or even HO/N gauge stuff, I'd have spent some money. 

 
 
 
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July 16, 2012 7:11 PM

I know what you mean with regards to the gift shop.  I only bought a couple of refrigerator magnets.

 

A custom run MTH RailKing Overton passenger car with "Lincoln Train Museum" above the windows, and "Gettysburg" below the windows would be a perfect O gauge piece for the museum to sell... I know I would have bought one had they existed...

 

Andy

 

TCA, LRRC, LCCA, Atlas Golden Spike (Charter Member), MTHRRC, LOTS, Pittsburgh Independent Hi-Railers - "Diesels represent the job, steam represents the adventure!"

 
 
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July 16, 2012 7:21 PM

Hi Andy Now this is a beautiful thread, really nice pictures and lots to see

I'm sure you had a great time. Thanks for sharing.

 

Thanks again, Alex

 

P.S. I WISH ALL THE THREADS WERE LIKE THIS

 

HOME OF THE JADA RAILROAD

 

   

 
 
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July 16, 2012 8:32 PM

Thank you for the Memories, I think it's been 30 years since we took in the little movie.

 

A living Steam Engine hauling a train with commerce, reaching across time and space; is a wonderful journey undertaken by Man.

 

A product of our fine College System that has been made redundant by imports of Foreign Workers willing to push a Keyboard for a living.

 
 
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July 16, 2012 9:35 PM

Thanks for posting those pictures.  I have driven past that building since 1970,

and have thought "tourist trap", and driven on and never been in it, which thought applies to several shops in that row.   I am glad to know what is in there. There was a hobby shop on that road next to the battlefield years ago, but it has moved over on a side street and had/has almost nothing in tinplate.  On the road west on 30 out of Gettysburg there was an office machine shop where the guy had a lot of trains, after, I think, it was his father-in-law that had a building east on 30 out of Gettysburg.  I was at both places a couple of times and the second even, at least once,  had a flea market out in his yard that I set up in during York week.  This was far from the now known York shows.  I think the "father-in-law". who was in a wheel chair, sold that property and moved into the office equipt. shop, but...not sure.  I don't know if that

office machine shop or trains are still there.

There was the tiny little tinplate shop on the main square in New Oxford, now moved into downtown York with a change of hands, and  a few blocks west, the two passenger cars set on a lot and made into a scale hobby shop a couple of doors down from and, I think, owned by, a foreign train importer.  All are gone...the cars set there empty for years, but they disappeared a couple of years ago.  The station and, I think still, one other passenger car sit directly across the street from that, last I remember, now vacant lot.  For a while I would visit a tinplate shop just south of Willow Street, Pa., a ride through country roads south of Lancaster to get from Strasburg to York,

that was part of a garden center.  But when I last attempted to visit a few years

ago...the whole elaborate building was gone...and they, operating an open garden

center on the site, said it was destroyed by fire.

Kind of a nostalgia trip to have seen all these come and go in my infrequent trips to

the area.

I have never made it to Nicholas Smith when it was open....

 

 

 

??Another one of THOSE!!??  What you want to sell is not what I want to buy!

 
 
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July 16, 2012 11:33 PM

Been to Gettysburg many timse but never to train Museum-- this will change soon

maybe tomorrow.

 

Gettysburg has two train shops. One is Gilberts-- mostly hO and brass. But I have bought O gauge there.. Gilberts has been in Gettysburg many years but moved to a new lcocation a few years ago.

 

The other train shop is on Rt. 30 but I can't remember the name. Mostly O gauge..

 

Al W.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

R. Alfred Whiting

 
 
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July 17, 2012 2:12 AM

Yes, Gilberts on the old Steinwher Ave across from the Colt Museum. I think Old Man Gilberts sold out and later his Nephew Danny opened his shop. I believe that the Reynolds house about a block down was where Gen Reynolds 1st Corp was brought to die after a sniper took him down on day one.

 

The one on US 30 in New Oxford contained a store inside two passenger cars and was at a old Ma and Pa Station. It's been closed for years. A secret little shop about 50 feet east of this store was also selling European Import Trains. Chock full of trains.

 

Gilberts had Models, trains and brass. Some O scale too. Mostly HO. The thing I remember most was the feats of memory this Man had. You could walk in and ask for the most obscure detail part there is and he would walk past man high stacks of little drawers and pull out what you were asking for.

 

Regarding the so called Tourist Traps... I recall back in the 90's the Battlefield Museum next to the McDonalds were a bit of a change. They had a battlefield presentation in a center of a square auditorium. Fairly complete for it's time and technology. Best seen with the lights off.

 

Well, it scared children not used to battle and violence so they changed the program to have the lights on and so on. Me thinks the stock of Children changed some time ago to be too sensitive to that sort of thing.

 

Tourism is Gettysburg's Stock and Trade, however most of it is good.

 

They had even a trolley line back in the 1900's with a car barn down town for the purpose of taking people to see the Battlefield.

 

I think to write down more, but think it is enough for one night. I spent time in and about that area over the years.

 

One of the most remarkable tourist traps in the area was known as "Cashier in the Sky" a Tower of some few hundred feet high. It was demo'ed by about 20 pounds of explosives sometime in the late 90's

 

Culps Hill still has a tower with a range disk useful for pointing out the major points of the battlefield. Mid April or so is particularly best when the sky is clean and free of clouds for a dozen miles or more.

 

Gettysburg did have a Steam Train trips until the day the Boiler's Safety bolts snapped per design due to apparent low water. And later the economy pretty much put the death blow on what remained.

 

A living Steam Engine hauling a train with commerce, reaching across time and space; is a wonderful journey undertaken by Man.

 

A product of our fine College System that has been made redundant by imports of Foreign Workers willing to push a Keyboard for a living.

Last edited by Lee 145 July 17, 2012 2:17 AM
 
 
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July 17, 2012 6:47 AM

The train shop on Rt. 30 I referred to to is not in New Oxford. It is on RT. 30 somewhat west of Gettysburg town center. It is in a houselike structure.

 

Al W.

 

 

 

R. Alfred Whiting

 
 
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July 17, 2012 7:00 AM

I was just at the place you are talking about.  I forget the name.  It is on Rte. 30 a block or so past the roundabout, next to a hair salon.  It is on your way to the Seminary school.


There is a PINK train out in front of the house, and inside it's basically some guy's house, packed to the gills with stuff, Lionel mainly, lots of older stuff. 

 

If you hit the Pizza Hut you have gone too far.  Parking was limited, we parked behind the hair salon and I popped in for a few minutes. 

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 8:37 AM

Unless the "Pink Train" place is that house that had signs advertising repairs on

office machines, I have missed that one.  The guy in the wheel chair I mentioned

was big in Marx, and the office machine shop had some of that when I visited, I

thought moved from the place east on 30.  In another thread somebody mentioned

an O scale shop in Elgin, Ill., that I was unaware of...always glad to hear about

any "secret" shops around the country that I might check out if I wander through the area.  They have been closing more than opening lately, but some do pop up...

 

??Another one of THOSE!!??  What you want to sell is not what I want to buy!

 
 
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July 17, 2012 9:07 AM

Here is a screen grab pic of the "other" train shop on Rt. 30 just West of town.  It is located between the Pizza Hut and General Lee's HQ:

 

GettysburgT30

 

I've never stopped in, mostly due to the parking situation, and the time of day.  I usually pass through in the early a.m. or late at night.

 

Andy

 

TCA, LRRC, LCCA, Atlas Golden Spike (Charter Member), MTHRRC, LOTS, Pittsburgh Independent Hi-Railers - "Diesels represent the job, steam represents the adventure!"

 
 
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July 17, 2012 9:08 AM

The store being referenced is Carver's on Buford Avenue. As mentioned, it's a great store for older Lionel, Flyer and Marx equipment. Most of my Marx pieces were purchased there. The store which was located east of Gettysburg on Route 30 mentioned by coloradohirailer was owned by Ivan Kling who passed in '92. Mr. Kling and his associate provided the two signatures on my TCA application.

 

The original Gilbert's on Steinwehr Avenue was a legend in railroading circles. It was well stocked with a variety of scales and did a significant mail order business. Dick Gilbert was a genuine train person and great to speak with. I had the good fortune to meet him during a visit to the store during the late 80s. He and I had a wonderful conversation about the Reading Rambles as Gettysburg was a popular destination for these excursions. Dick ended up selling the business to some nice folks from New England but it ended up closing not long after. Tommy is Dick's nephew and branched out on his own. Tommy's shop is great as well. It's not terribly well stocked with O gauge items but I work with other scales as well and his selection of HO and N scale merchandise is superb and he offers an extensive range of books.

 

South of Gettysburg on Route 116 in Blue Ridge Summit is Mainline Hobby Supply. The store is owned by a very nice family and offers a complete selection of equipment and supplies for all scales. An appealing variety of books is stocked as well. The store is bright, well organized and a pleasure to visit. After visiting Mainline Hobby Supply, one can head back down the hill on 116 into Maryland and hop on 15 South to Thurmont to visit the oft-mentioned Catoctin Mountain Trains in Thurmont. You will not find a store with a better stock of O gauge plus the Johnsons are just about the nicest people you'll meet within or outside the railroading community.

 

As mentioned above, the stores in New Oxford are gone. Paul's was the store occupying the two passenger cars at the Route 30 grade crossing of the CSX Hanover Sub and Amro Ltd. was just up the street. This was the store specializing in foreign equipment. On the square was the original B&E Junction, owned by Bill and Ellie Barkby. They subsequently sold the business to the gentleman who eventually moved it to York. Although the stores are gone from New Oxford, the Conewago Valley Model Railroad club occupies the old New Oxford station building at the Route 30 crossing. I believe the club holds an open house at holiday time.

 

As far as the region's prototype action is concerned, one does not have to drive very far to find trains. In the immediate vicinity of town, CSX runs daily trains on the Hanover Sub and the Gettysburg & Northern has built a healthy freight business. Expanding one's scope yields additional treasures such as the Maryland Midland, Walkersville Southern, Middletown & Hummelstown and York Railway. As one can see, Gettysburg and its surrounding region have a lot to offer the open minded rail enthusiast.

 

Bob

 

 

 

 

 

  

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 4:17 PM

"As mentioned above, the stores in New Oxford are gone. Paul's was the store occupying the two passenger cars at the Route 30 grade crossing of the CSX Hanover Sub and Amro Ltd. was just up the street. This was the store specializing in foreign equipment. On the square was the original B&E Junction, owned by Bill and Ellie Barkby. They subsequently sold the business to the gentleman who eventually moved it to York. Although the stores are gone from New Oxford, the Conewago Valley Model Railroad club occupies the old New Oxford station building at the Route 30 crossing. I believe the club holds an open house at holiday time."

 

I used to go there as a kid.  I never went to Amro that I can recall because of the focus on foreign stuff - I always had US prototype stuff.  But I remember the rail cars well.  Neat shop, I miss it.

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 4:18 PM

Originally Posted by Andy Hummell:

Here is a screen grab pic of the "other" train shop on Rt. 30 just West of town.  It is located between the Pizza Hut and General Lee's HQ:

 

GettysburgT30

 

I've never stopped in, mostly due to the parking situation, and the time of day.  I usually pass through in the early a.m. or late at night.

 

Andy

 

That's the one.  I stopped in on a hot day, wife didn't feel like getting out of the car, and my toddler son was being cranky, so I didn't get to look too much.    If I had more time to browse I might have found something, though!

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 4:32 PM

Don Carver is a great guy, a real character, and has a great shop.  The place is stacked floor-to-ceiling with stuff, front-to-back.  He has repaired many items for me, first rate, and I have purchased a number of my pre-war items from him.  He does not carry much new stock, predominantly pre- and post-war Lionel, Marx and AF, and he has alot of vintage toys as well.  You could spend a few hours in there just looking around.  Well worth a visit...

 

 

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 4:41 PM

Originally Posted by Andy Hummell:

Here is a screen grab pic of the "other" train shop on Rt. 30 just West of town.  It is located between the Pizza Hut and General Lee's HQ:

 

GettysburgT30

 

I've never stopped in, mostly due to the parking situation, and the time of day.  I usually pass through in the early a.m. or late at night.

 

Andy

Andy: That’s a great shop, or at least it was the last time I was there about 10 years ago.  The store is a lot larger then it looks from the street front as it extends quite a bit to the back, as if there were several rooms added on to the original house.  The owner is Don Carver, a TCA member, and he is very friendly and helpful.  He specializes in Marx but also had a lot of postwar Lionel and Flyer when I was there.  I was very happy to be able to find the missing pieces for my original Marx wind-up set when I visited there.

 

It was definitely worth a stop back then.  As I recall I parked on the street right at the curb in the front of building just like that minivan in the photo. 

 

HTH,

 

Bill

 
 
 
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July 17, 2012 4:45 PM

Despite the fact that it doesn't have a ton of O gauge rolling stock, Tommy Gilbert's is a great hobby shop.  It has lots of scratch building materials, books, and tools.  And the staff is very friendly and helpful.  Tommy does spectacular custom painting and he transformed my Western Pacific Lionel S-2 Alco switcher into Weirton Steel's #208, complete with stack modifications.  It is very sharp and one of my favorite engines.

 

 

1160126952_2Qb5w-XL

 

I highly recommend his shop.  It's on Water Street in Gettysburg.

 

George

 

TCA, NMRA, PRRT&HS Modeling the PRR Panhandle Division between 1948-1957.

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September 22, 2012 12:30 PM

The Gettysburg Lincoln Train did trade hands on July 10th, 2012.  Mr. James F Kralik, retired Sheriff of Rockland County New York is our owner.  I would like to introduce myself, my name is Karen and I have been blessed with the opportunity to be part of the history of this museum.  Thank you Andy for posting these terrific photos.  We would love include them in our album of the history of our purchase if you would not protest.  The static layout is no longer a static layout.  We are pleased to now feature the 'Lincoln Funeral Special' Diorama. It replaces the static layout which is now displayed in a different format.  Our efforts are to present the Spirit of Lincoln and the Spirit of America through the Lincoln Train Museum.  Our Diorama hallway walks us through the history of our United States from our founding father to present day.  Our museum now displays our trains as well as articles of American History.  By next spring we plan to have much more to share.

history display

lincoln special engine

lincoln special

springfield diorama

 
 
 
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September 22, 2012 1:49 PM

Originally Posted by Karen Saylor:

Thank you Andy for posting these terrific photos.  We would love include them in our album of the history of our purchase if you would not protest.

 

I will gladly give permission to use my photos, provided some small credit is given somewhere (even in really tiny type).  Email me (my address should be visible in my profile) and I can send higher resolution copies than what you can get here.

 

Andy

 

TCA, LRRC, LCCA, Atlas Golden Spike (Charter Member), MTHRRC, LOTS, Pittsburgh Independent Hi-Railers - "Diesels represent the job, steam represents the adventure!"

 
 
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