Project 365 / Day 71 – Take a Seat

Civil War Era Passenger Car

Civil War Era Passenger Car

This morning was one of those mornings that all is right with the world.

Visiting the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, Maryland and meeting with guest curator and author, Daniel Carroll Toomey, I stepped back into time.

With his recently published book “The War Came by Trains,” Mr. Toomey shared with me that he wrote the book in a blazing nine months. Hiding in the basement of his home, writing seven days a week up to fifteen hours a day the well researched and beautifully illustrated book tells the story of trains during the American Civil War.

When sharing his story with me in the creation and development of the stellar Civil War Train exhibit at the museum, I was reminded of the power of networking. People of liked minds and interest in sharing their love of trains during the civil war period cross all borders. Many items are shared with the museum from private collections to be displayed in the exhibition gallery.

During the civil war, this popular yellow passenger car was transformed to be a hospital train car where injured soldiers were transported and cared for along the B&O railroad system. This car was returned to its original passenger car design, complete with oil lamps and a spittoon.

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It was one of those mornings where I felt like royalty. Mr. Toomey was a true gentleman and being Maryland’s top expert of the civil war in Maryland, his depth and breadth of the subject was awe inspiring. With great passion for not only the civil war era, but also his brainchild of “The War Came by Trains” exhibit, in his word:  “Coming to the museum is like going to Carnegie Hall.”

Thank you so much Dan for a fantastic morning exploring your world.

30 thoughts on “Project 365 / Day 71 – Take a Seat

      • I would have loved it, I’ll keep that museum in the back of my mind, hopefully I will have the chance to visit it someday. The train museums I have been to were more focused on freight, such as the trains used to transport iron ore to the shores of the Great Lakes for the ore to be loaded on the big “Lakers” that ply the lakes.

  1. The train’s hub in a couple of spots as they move from west to east and cross the Mississippi River. I grew up in a town on the east side of the Mississippi where the trains and train cars were resorted and sent further east. I grew up with a real love of our railroad heritage. I have visited many museums that celebrate this history and I thoroughly enjoyed your pictures.

    • Oh how very exciting. You’ll be thrilled to hear about this project as I’m trying to get an article together about the civil war train exhibit at the museum. They have the largest collection in the world. Of only 25 or so left, they have 8 of them.

  2. What a great day, I’ll bet you loved your time with Mr. Tooney – your photographs give us a perfect look into this wonderful piece of history. Looking at the seats I can imagine the sounds of people talking and bustling through the aisle, both as public transportation and for the soldiers.

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