Toys For Tots Train 2013

12/7 - NYS&W Railway, Southern Division
12/8 - Middletown & NJ Railroad
12/14 - Morristown & Erie Railway
12/15 - Kuiken Brothers Lumber Co., Roxbury, NJ

The URHS approved the usage of PRR Baggage car, NYC #43 and the Hickory Creek for these trains.


Santa, a Marine & New York Central #43 at Hawthorne NJ NYS&W station. Photo: Rail Education Programs.

The URHS is in the News!

Railfan-and-Railroad-November-2013In November and December issues our equipment is featured in THREE different magazines.

Railfan & Railroad was on hand to cover our night photo shoot.

Railpace features a 2-page spread on our Transportation Heritage Festival.

The Hickory Creek even made it into a featured photo in the December Trains Magazine.

Get to your local dealer and pick yourself up one of these excellent publications!

Pennsylvania Railroad GG1 4877

            GG1 4877 is one of the highlights on the URHS collection. 4877 began its career on the Pennsylvania Railroad in December of 1939. Over the next several decades is served the Pennsylvania, Penn Central, and New Jersey Transit. When it came time for New Jersey Transit to retire the last of the GG1s, 4877 had the honor of serving as the last GG1 to pull a passenger train in New Jersey. In 1981, Jersey Central RailroadHistorical Society, a member of the URHS, partnered with New Jersey Transit to paint 4877 into PRR's Tuscan red paint scheme, giving it the nickname "Big Red". In October of 1983, it pulled the train dubbed "The Last Run of the GG1." This became the last run of 4877's careen when a breakdown required sister locomotive 4879 to save the train, earning it the title that 4877 would have had. Regardless, 4877 still hold a special place in the hearts of those who saw it traverse the North Jersey Coastline and across the northeast decades beforehand.

            4877 was stored in Hoboken for almost a decade before being donated to the United Railroad Historical Society in 1991. Over the course of the next decade, it was stored under the protection of the URHS until grant money was found to restore it. In 2005, Star Trak Inc. began work on the rust-damaged body. It was not until 2011 that the final coat of paint was applied. The URHS elected to paint "Big Red" into it's as-built Brunswick Green paint scheme to remain true to the locomotive's history. The finishing touches were put on by volunteers in Boonton yard and in 2013, the URHS can call the 4877 project "finshed" in time for the 30th anniversary of the locomotive's retirement.

           While the pantographs may lift, and the headlights illuminate the track, we may never again see 4877 operate in regular service for a miriad of reaons. All GG1s were gutted of key components before being donated due to safety concerns. Even with those parts, GG1s cannot run as-built on modern electrical systems or without modern cab signal equipment. GG1s were also imfamous for experiencing damage to their 35-foot cast-steel frames and have been repaired with more welds than would make them safe by today's standards. Even not in operation, 4877 still makes a beautiful display piece and will be a highlight of the future New Jersey Railroad Museum. 4877 can be see by the public at the yearly URHS Transporation Heritage Festival (September 21, 2014).

Photos of 4877

Hover over to view description.

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September 2013 URHS News

Transportation Heritage Festival – Clean-up & Prep work needed – NEED VOLUNTEERS from various URHS groups! It is suggested that we should have a minimum of 2 people per group. Everyone [group] needs to let Pete Hasler know by Monday September 16th (with names). Volunteers should arrive by 8 am, event runs from 10 – 4. Pete Hasler urges all URHS groups to send out promotional materials. We have 10 days from today to the event – there is work to be done.

Capt. Bill McKelvey will be bringing a pump car and a velocipede to Boonton for display.

The URHS approved the usage of PRR Baggage car #9286, NYC Tavern Lounge #43 and the Hickory Creek for the 2013 Toys for Tots trains.

Fall Foliage Excursion Saturday October 19th

Fall Foliage Excursion

Come ride in classic style aboard these historic cars from NYC to Albany & back on Saturday October 19th

Tickets — $175 each to ride one car on the trip to Albany and the other on the return trip. $150 each for the New York Central Tavern-Lounge #43

Click for larger view.

Hickory Creek

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NYC Tavern Lounge #43

NY Central Hickory Creek NYC to Albany from Mark Forman on Vimeo.

NY Central Hickory Creek NYC to Albany. from Mark Forman

All pictures of the Hickory Creek and the NYC Tavern Lounge #43 on this page will enlarge when clicked. Go for it!

<– Train Number –>
11:20 am
6:50 pm
11:44 am
Yonkers, NY
12:04 pm
Croton Harmon, NY
5:58 pm
12:43 pm
Poughkeepsie, NY
5:20 pm
12:57 pm
Rhinecliff, NY
5:06 pm
1:20 pm
Hudson, NY
4:45 pm
1:50 pm
Albany-Rensselaer, NY
4:20 pm

PLEASE NOTE: Dress code for these trips will be Business Casual, with a sport jacket preferred for gentlemen. All fares include lunch & afternoon Hors D’oeuvres. A limited number of tickets will be sold!

We will be selling two ride types for this trip:

  • Ride in BOTH the Hickory Creek and NYC #43 combo tickets for $175 each (ride one way in each car)
  • Ride in NYC #43 ONLY tickets for $150.

ALSO NOTE: if you buy a ticket for the NYC #43 you will be able to visit the Hickory Creek, you will not have a chance to stay and sit in the Hickory Creek but you are welcome to come back and visit. You will have your seat reserved in the 43.

New York Central # 43

Click for larger view.

Builder: Budd Company, Type: Lounge, Built: 1947, Original Owner: New York Central Railroad, No. 43, Storage Location: Boonton, NJ. History: One of 13 Tavern Lounge cars (Numbers 35 to 47) utilized over the New York Central fleet of long dis­tance trains. After the Penn Central merger in 1965, the 43 was renum­bered (#4443) and served on many trains between New York and Washington DC. Upon the form­ation of Conrail in April 1976 the car was assigned to the North Jersey Coast Line service operated by Conrail and later, NJ Transit. It was retired in 1987 and New Jersey Transit donated it to the URHS of NJ museum collection in 1991. It suffered extreme vandalism while in storage, but has now been comp­letely restored to it’s “as-built” configuration and ran its first trip as an Amtrak cer­tified car from New York to Washington and back on January 9, 2010 and again on January 13, 2010. It is currently available for charter by Luxury Rail Vacations Inc

Tavern area


 NYC – Hickory Creek

Click for larger view.

Builder: Pullman Standard Car Manufacturing Company, Type: 5 Bedroom, Lookout Observation Lounge, Built: August 1948, Original Owner: Pullman Company, Storage Location: Boonton, NJ. History: This car and was christened on September 15, 1948 in Grand Central Terminal, New York City. General Dwight David Eisenhower officiated the celebration of the New York Central Railroad’s rebuilt ’20th Century Limited’ train entering service between New York City and Chicago, Illinois. During it’s 20 years of service, the Hickory Creek graced the rear end of the “most famous train in the world” and was used in advertisements, pro­motions, and Hollywood’s finest movies to reflect a standard of excellence in premier rail travel. In 1968, it was retired and sold to Ringling Brothers, Barnum & Bailey Circus. United Railroad Historical Society of New Jersey obtained the car in 1991 and contracted Star Trak to rebuild the car to Amtrak standards. Its inaugural trip was run on June 26, 2005 between New York City and Niagara Falls, NY. It is currently available for charter through Luxury Rail Vacations, Inc.