This unique one-of-a-kind inspection car was built in 1973 at the Katy’s (M-K-T) shops in Denison, TX, from a former 40’ all-steel Pullman-Standard boxcar. The car was painted green and used by M-K-T’s operating department between 1973-1988. After the Katy was acquired by Union Pacific, this car was given to the city of Denison, TX, for display. However, due to delays, it was instead sold to the U.S. Army--where it was painted red. The ORM acquired the Inspection car from Fort Sill where the car was used as an office to do load plans to ship out military trains and trucks. It is believed to have been used by the Katy railroad and later used by the Union Pacific Railroad.
Builder Winter - Weiss, Denver, CO. Built in 1924. Acquired in 1985. Previous owner: Southern San Luis Valley Railroad, a subsidery of the Colorado Aggregrate Company. History: The car had the truck axle added for "traction" sometime in the 1950s. The initial location was between the front and rear truck, just ahead of the lead axle of the rear truck. The car still looked the same as photos as late as Sept. 1949. A photo in the book shows the extended front end was added by 1960. This extension was probably added to accommodate an air compressor to operate the train brakes on the cars, as there are brackets and piping still in place that indicate a compressor was once located there. The M-300 is very light, and freight cars loaded or unloaded would not have any problem pushing it down the track once they got to rolling. The SLVS experimented with the rubber-wheel drive system when the steel wheels (on the rear truck) proved to provide inadequate traction. The rail bus was used to replace a mail/passenger train. The problem with the rubber tire system was the tires heated up on the rail to the point where they last only a couple of round trips of the line. The same problem occurred with the first D-500 that was built with rubber wheels. Replacing a blown tire on that thing would be downright exhausting, particularly at high altitude. It seems that both the M-300 and the first D-500 were quite adept at blowing tires. The M-300 also had a steel trailer car of narrow gage dimensions (standard gage axles however) that was used infrequently and finally finished its days as the pump house for the SLVS water well. As for how the car came to Oklahoma City: One of the traveling members of the Oklahoma Railway Museum (then called the Central Oklahoma Railfan Club, also called the Central Oklahoma Chapter of the NRHS) happened onto the SLVS at Blanca about 1985. He caught sight of the M-300 and asked the railroad if they would part with it. About 6 months later the M-300 was loaded on the back of a flat bed semi-trailer and trucked back to Oklahoma. The car earned the name "The Mouse" because of its silver/gray paint and the fact that a whole troop of mice could be seen falling out of the M-300 and running all over the deck of the trailer as it was towed over La Veta Pass.
This derrick car was built by the Fairmont Company, date unknown. It belonged initially to the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad (CRI&P). The car then went to the North Central Oklahoma Railway and finally to the Museum. The winch mechanism is not original, but is fairly typical of modifications made by the CRI&P RR.
This motor car was built by the Fairmont Railway Motors Company in 1984, Class MT19 AA-2-9. It was sold to the Southern Pacific Transportation Company of California which operated the car in its Maintenance of Way Department (Inventory No. E1492). The car was donated to the ORM by Bob Flaherty in 2016. Information on this motor car was provided by the Martin County, MN, Historical Society.
This car was built in 1927 by the American Car & Foundry Company for the Southern Pacific RR with an original road number of SP 6701. Later on, it was converted to a tool car and put into service as SPMW 6029, a Maintenance of Way car. This car was donated to the Museum by the Union Pacific RR.
This "crane car" was built in 1964 by General Steel Industries, Inc., of Granite City, IL. It was used by the Missouri Pacific RR as an "idler car" for a crane (such as OGE No. 2299) when in transit. The car was donated to the ORM by the Union Pacific RR. Length: 60 ft. Light weight: 72,900 lbs. Capacity: 147,000 lbs.