Press release from the Fort Wayne Historical Railroad Society:
Join the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society for steam-powered passenger excursions in North Judson, Indiana at the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum and in Owosso, Michigan as part of TrainFestival 2009.
These excursions mark a significant milestone in no. 765’s history. After a sixteen year absence from the mainline the locomotive, fully restored after a five year rebuild that ended in 2005, will reprise her role as passenger excursion train motive power and goodwill ambassador.
Beginning Memorial Day Weekend, no. 765 will operate on the former Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad as a guest of the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum, culminating over a years worth of planning and preparation that will see two recipients of Indiana’s Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century combine forces for the enjoyment of the public.
These trips will operate on a historic rail line that was preserved by a $1.5 million dollar Transportation Enhancement grant in 2004. Awarded by the state of Indiana to the Town of North Judson, the grant was instated to preserve the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum and promote economic development in the area.
One of only a handful of historic operating steam locomotives in existence today, Nickel Plate Road locomotive no. 765, built in 1944 by the Lima Locomotive Works, has operated over 52,000 miles in passenger excursion service since being originally rehabilitated in 1979 after being retired and put on public display in 1963.
In 2001, the project to completely rebuild the locomotive was awarded $449,500 by a TEA-21 grant which covered nearly 80% of the total restoration costs. Following a series of test runs in 2006, no. 765 has returned to operation for public exhibition and excursions as part of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society’s mission to preserve and make railroad history.
2-hour long roundtrips will operate three times daily May 23rd-May 25th at 10AM, 1PM, and 4PM Central Standard (Daylight Savings) Time between North Judson and LaCrosse, Indiana.
On June 20th and 21st, no. 765 will pull the Mint Festival Flyer during North Judson’s Annual Mint Festival between North Judson and LaCrosse, Indiana. Trains depart daily at 10AM, 1PM, and 4PM Central Standard (Daylight Savings).
All trips departing North Judson will feature special photo runs for passengers to enjoy the sights and sounds of the historic steam era. Tickets for these trips are on sale now at www.765.org and 260-493-3885. After April 13th, tickets may also be purchased on Saturdays from 9AM-3PM local time at the North Judson railroad depot 507 Mulberry Street, North Judson, Indiana 46366 or on Saturdays from 1PM to 3PM local time at the TrainTown Museum, 15808 Edgerton Road, New Haven, Indiana.
In July, no. 765 will travel to Owosso, Michigan to star in the nation’s largest railroading event of the year as it and seven other historic steam locomotives operate in public exhibition and recreational passenger service. The 765 will be on live-steam static display July 24th and 25th and operate a day-long passenger excursion on July 26th.
Tickets for this event may be purchased online at www.trainfestival2009.com.