Archive for General

Welcome to our new Volunteer Coordinator Amanda Resnick

Please welcome Amanda Resnick, our new volunteer coordinator. She started September 7th and has already proven herself a welcome addition to ORM. Amanda is diving right in and working on recruiting and assigning volunteers for Day Out With Thomas. She recently moved to Oklahoma City, with her husband, from Virginia.

Activities that Amanda will be working on include scheduling of volunteers for train run days and special events, maintaining the Volgistics database, project support, and recruitment of new members.  She can’t wait get to started and to meet everyone, so stop by and say hello!


Updated Depot Display

Volunteer and Education Chair Steve Kamm has been hard at work revamping the displays in the Oakwood Depot. After much cleaning and rearranging of display cases and objects the baggage room is now a informative educational space for our visitors.

On the west wall is the Railroad Scales Display that includes a rail car weigh scale, platform scale and weigh tickets along with a cross-buck and two historic signs from Oklahoma Railway Museum’s previous incarnation as Central Oklahoma Railfans Club.

At the south east corner ORM’s collection of historic track tools are arranged on the wall clearly marked with descriptions of their use.  The display case is now home to various track-related items from Chuck Shinn’s collection, along with a model velocipede donated by Stan Hall. We’re in the process of enhancing two photos, circa 1912, of a group of gandy dancers which includes Samuel Sanders—grandfather of our Terry Birchett.  A newly acquired coal-burning, depot stove is now on display. This stove, probably 100 years old, was made for the St. Louis & San Francisco Railway and was used to heat the Wellston, Oklahoma depot.

On the east wall is our Frisco velocipede. This velocipede, built by the Sheffield Velocipede Car Company, is probably 100 years old.  It was owned by the St. Louis—San Francisco Railway and used by crews for track inspection and repair.  This antique velocipede was donated to the ORM by former Frisco Road Master, R. B. Mose.  Restoration was completed in 2017 by Steve Kamm.

Steve wishes to thank all those who helped on this project: Charles Price, Eric Dilbeck, Larry Dodd, Stan Hall, Chuck Shinn and others.


Frisco Turntable is Here!

A relic of the railway industry has  join the Oklahoma Railway Museum, the 100-foot Frisco turntable was delivered via truck by J&B Heavy Haul on April 14.

Check back we will have a webpage up soon with pictures of the move.


Photos: Jay Chilton


Historic Frisco Turntable coming to ORM

A relic of the railway industry is set to join the Oklahoma Railway Museum, as a 100-foot Frisco turntable will be delivered via truck by J&B Heavy Haul on April 14.

Utilized as a way to turn locomotives 180 degrees, allowing trains to travel back in the direction from which they came, turntables were once an integral part of the railway industry. They are typically steel bridges, ranging from 6 to 120 feet long, supported by an axis in the middle of the structure. Wheels on the outside guide the turntable on its ring tail, while equipment is turned.

The turntable arriving at the Oklahoma Railway Museum was originally installed in Sapulpa, Okla., in 1920 by the Frisco railroad. It was moved by the Frisco to Oklahoma City in 1929 as a replacement for an 82-foot turntable. In 1994, it was donated to the museum by the BNSF Railway. It is being transported from Stillwater Central’s yard.

As the Stillwater Central is an active railroad facility, public access prior to transportation of the turntable will be restricted. Turntable will be accessible at the Oklahoma Railway Museum. ORM thanks the Stillwater Central for their support of the museum on this project.

The museum is also seeking donations to help cover the costs of relocating the turntable. Donations can be made through the museum’s website at, or by mail at 3400 NE Grand Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK, 7311.

New parking lot completed!

The new parking lot was completed and was inaugurated with the Central Oklahoma Corvette club meet up on March 11th. Tuna Dobbins had the honor of being the first to park in the new lot.


Track work

Guy Lynn and his crew, Lupe, Gregorio, Miguel, Angel, Carlos and Raphael were hard at work last week surfacing and tamping the Main 2.  The track was also adjusted so that Santa Fe engine #2571 can now enter the house track. It looks great for the start of the 2017 run season!

Tamping                                                                    View North                                                        View South

Track work 1      Track work 2  track work 3

New Year sees new construction

20170118_084848  20170118_085005





Oklahoma Railway Museum has started the new year with an exciting new project. Construction started this week on our new parking lot. The crew from A-Tech started earth moving operations on Tuesday.

Expansion plan print 2015-11-19 cropped


Custom Wind Chime

Member Art Gustafson made a custom wind chime for the Oklahoma Railway Museum.


The wind chime is currently hanging outside the museum office. The tube are stainless steel, the top is aluminum, the striker is aluminum with a plastic sound control and the wind sale is melted plastic bags. It has 3 setting for sound. A new wind sail will be made and we will re-hang it with cables.  Every thing is recycled or leftover from projects. So it makes a soft green sound.


See a video of it here







Oklahoma Railway Museum kicks off Scout Merit Badge Program with railroad tales, tour and a ride

More than a dozen Boy Scouts and one Girl Scout learned about railroads at the Oklahoma Railway Museum's first Merit Badge Program even in April.The Oklahoma Railway Museum (ORM) recently launched the Gary Githens Railroading Merit Badge Program. And if initial response is an indicator, the program is bound for success.

Thirteen Boy Scouts, one Girl Scout and seven adult leaders arrived at the museum’s depot in Oklahoma City in April to learn about railroading, ride the rails, and spend the night camping. They also got an upclose look at a a few old cabooses.

After the train trip, the Scouts convened for a session on Operation Lifesaver conducted by Drake Rice in the museum’s Rock Island Party Coach, which serves as a classroom. The Scouts then went outside where Kamm told stories of cabooses, illustrating with ORM’s CRI&P No. 17834. The unusual caboose was originally built as a 40-ton Class B-2 boxcar, probably by the Bettendorf Co. of Iowa in 1915, for the CRI & P Railroad, according to the museum. It was modified into a caboose in 1940’s by the Rock Island Railroad. To make the change, the center section was cut out, end platforms were added, and a steel cupola was mounted of the roof. The car has underwent restoration in 2010.After introductions, activities began with a flag-raising ceremony conducted by the Scouts and attended by several museum volunteers. The Scouts and their leaders then boarded the 9:15 a.m. train and rode the Great Northern caboose for a 50-minute journey. For most of the Scouts, this was their first train ride.

Back in the classroom, members Tony Chamblin and Fred Jones began their presentation on the history of railroads and the various types of railcars. Anne Murray-Chilton and Eric Dilbeck prepared the presentation from content found on a public Boy Scout website.

Following an outdoor sack lunch, the Scouts toured the museum and learned firsthand about cab operations, diesel engines and knuckle couplers. Then it was more lectures on engines, braking, trucks, train schedules and signals.

Kamm also discussed model trains and showed examples of the different scales. The Scouts competed in teams of two on the museum’s HO-scale timesaver layout. At the end of the day, the guests operated the AT&SF handcar.

All of the Scouts received a Gary Githens Railroading Merit Badge Program patch and camped at the museum overnight.

“We hope this marks a new chapter in ORM history,” said member Steve Kamm, who helped create the program, which aims to provide education and experiences to help Boy Scouts earn their Railroading Merit Badge.

ORM members started planning the event Troop 6 of the Bartlesville, OK-based Cherokee Area Council contacted them in January.

The idea of a merit badge program was discussed at the next ORM board meeting, where it received enthusiastic support. After Githens died in January, the suggestion was made to name the program in his memory. He was a long-time ORM member, rail photographer, editor of The Dispatcher and also an active Boy Scout leader.

ORM received donations in honor of Githens (at his bequest), and in February the board approved allocating the funds as seed money for the program. Two long-term railroad employees, Chamblin and Jones, volunteered as hosts and program presenters. Together, they have more than 90 years of experience as brakemen and conductors for the Rock Island, Missouri-Kansas-Texas and Union Pacific railroads.

Oklahoma Railway Museum Launches New Website!

Volunteers Anne Chilton, Eric Dilbeck, and Steve Kamm have been working with T&S Online Marketing to update the look and functionality of our website. T&S Online Marketing, based in Edmond, works with non-pro ts to design websites and assist with online marketing. Our current website was designed ve years ago and was due a facelift.

“Design Wizard”, Holly Kosec, from T&S worked her magic to modernize our online presence. ORM’s new website debuted Wednesday June 8th. Steve, Eric and Anne will still have quite a bit of new content and photos to get up as well as updating existing pages over the next few months.