About The Railroad

Fillmore & Western

History & Policies


Fillmore & Western Railway Company (Short Line Enterprises) was founded in 1967. Between 1967 & 1972, the company bought, sold and traded locomotives, passenger cars and freight cars (mostly of 19th century origin). The majority of the equipment was acquired from the property departments of 3 major movie studios: MGM, Paramount & 20th Century Fox. This activity, combined with Short Line's experience in buying, selling and evaluating railroad equipment led to the company's emergence as one of the foremost appraisers in America of rolling stock and other railroad related items. It also focused the company on its long-term path of providing movie trains for the film industry.

By 1976, Short Line's collection of rolling stock was anything but short. The company moved lock, stock and locomotive, to the Sierra Railroad in Jamestown, California, which provided a better location for film work. It was also close to Sacramento, where principals of Short Line had been engaged by the Califomia Department of Parks and Recreation to supervise restoration of the extensive and historic collection of the California State Railroad Museum.

Short Line was also retained as the prime contractor by the Nevada State Museum on restoration projects in Carson City. This series of projects ran from 1979 to 1988, and resulted in the restoration of three derelict steam locomotives and seven 19th Century passenger & freight cars.
During this time (1985), Short Line moved its movie operations to Newhall Ranch, placing it within the Hollywood production zone. Between 1985 and 1990, Short Line was used in over seventy feature films, television series and commercials. No Hollywood railroad location had ever amassed that number of credits in such a brief period of time. The track lease was cancelled in 1990 when the Newhall Land and Farming Company decided to develop the surrounding area in a way that was incompatible with movie operations.

A search began for a new home of Hollywood's "Movie Trains". All potential sites in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura Counties were explored. The only line that met the specific needs of the film industry was Southern Pacific's Santa Paula Branch in rural Ventura County. The pastoral surroundings of the area also bode suitable for development of a passenger excursion business. The City of Fillmore showed great enthusiasm for the operation of a vintage train in conjunction with the revival of its 1920-era Central Business District. The objective, to create a major visitor destination that features the movie trains, passenger excursions and dinner trains as the master theme for the community redevelopment.

The "Movie Trains" found a home and Fillmore became "Train Town". In 1996, Short Line Enterprises became the film division of the Fillmore & Western Railway Company. Operations expanded from movie work and limited passenger trips to regularly scheduled daytime passenger excursions, Saturday and Sunday lunch/dinner trains, holiday train & other specialty trains. The antique trains of Fillmore & Western rolled into the 21st century. They remain highly involved in the magic of movie making, while the company's passenger excursions, dinner trains, private party and corporate event trains provide the means of travel to a bygone era....

Train History & Policies

Ticketing & Excursion Policies

  • Health & Safety
  • Absolutely NO BOARDING or DISEMBARKING without permission and knowledge of the Conductor. Absolutely NO JUMPING from vestibule or train steps! Please use care when boarding or disembarking, and we must insist that you use the handrails. NO RUNNING ON THE TRAIN.

    For safety, children MUST be accompanied by an adult when walking through the train. Please seat children with a parent or guardian at all times, never leaving the child without adult supervision.

    Only folding umbrella type strollers are allowed to be stowed on the train, due to space restrictions in the vestibule.

    Diaper changing is prohibited in railcars, due to food service and hygiene concerns. The restrooms are very small, so we encourage parents to change the child's diaper before the trip or at one of our stops.

    Please wear closed toe shoes, preferably rubber soled, for safety reasons when riding the trains. Flat shoes are REQUIRED. NO HIGH HEELS, FLIP FLOPS OR OPEN TOED SHOES.
  • Seating, Food & Reservations
  • Parties of less than four are subject to seating assignment with other passengers. All of our dining tables seat four, as in the tradition of railroad seating. Parties of five are seated three at one table and two at the table directly across the aisle. Parties of six are seated four at one table and two directly across the aisle. In both cases, there is a chance of a party of two being seated with the remaining two people in your party.

    If two or more parties want to sit together, their ticket orders must be made at the same time. Otherwise, we cannot guarantee the parties will be seated together.

    Children must be seated with a parent or guardian during the entire train ride. Children may NOT at any time be seated alone.

    Children under two years old who do not require a seat may ride in an adult's lap for the entire train ride at no charge. Children age two and older do require a seat, available at the reduced child fare. If your under age two infant does require a seat, you must purchase a child fare ticket for the infant. If you wish to bring a car seat for your under age two infant, please be aware that a child fare ticket will be required for the infant in the car seat. Also please be aware that our vintage trains are not equipped with seat belts.

    On meal trains, infants riding on an adult's lap with no seat of their own are not provided with a meal.

    No outside food or beverages are allowed on the train. We do allow birthday cakes to be brought on the train; however, lit candles are PROHIBITED as they are EXTREMELY dangerous on a moving train! You will need to provide your own plates and utensils. Refreshments and snacks, as well as beer and wine are available for purchase on our Weekend Scenics, Pumpkinliners, Santa Shopper and Christmas Tree train rides. Payment options on the train include cash, Visa, MasterCard and Discover.

    Dinner trains, Murder Mystery Dinner and Luncheon trains, and all other meal trains, such as Easter Lunch, Mother's Day Lunch, Father's Day Lunch, The Glow Train, The Firecracker Train, Headless Horseman Train, Dinner with Santa Train and Heritage Valley Tour Trains require advance reservations. If the train ride you are booking has a choice of entree please tell the reservation agent what the individuals in your party have chosen. Vegetarian meals are available. If anyone in your party has dietary restrictions, let the reservation agent know when you are buying your tickets and we will do our best to accommodate you.

    Please be sure of your dates and how many will be in your party when making your reservation because ALL TICKET SALES ARE FINAL. There are NO REFUNDS for any reason, including missing a train because of heavy traffic or getting lost, and no partial refunds for someone in your party not coming with you at the last minute. Trains typically depart promptly on time. We cannot "hold the train" for anyone, as it is not fair to the passengers who did arrive on time.

    Reservations are recommended on all trains, but are required on dinner and special event trains. Walk-ups are ok on Weekend Scenic trains.

    Credit cards will be charged at the time you make your reservation. Visa, MasterCard and Discover are accepted. Checks are not accepted.
  • North Pole Express Trains
  • ALL seats are assigned on this very popular special event. Seats are arranged in sets of four with two facing each other. Parties of five are seated three on one side of the aisle and two directly across the aisle. Parties of six are seated four on one side of the aisle and two directly across the aisle. In both cases, a party of two will be seated with the remaining two people in your party.

    As in the case of train rides where a meal is offered, parties of less than four will be seated with another party. If two or more parties want to sit together, their ticket orders must be made at the same time. Otherwise, there is no guarantee the parties will be seated together, as our North Pole Express rides commonly sell out. Children under two years old who do not require a seat may ride in an adult's lap for the entire train ride at no charge. If you wish to bring a car seat for your under age two infant, please be aware that a child fare ticket will be required for the infant in the car seat, and please note that our vintage trains are not equipped with seat belts.
  • Handicapped Accommodations
  • All of our trains are antiques and as such, they do not have room for wheelchairs. If however, the person using a wheelchair can board the train on their own or with help from someone in their party, and if the wheelchair is collapsible, we can stow the wheelchair in the vestibule during the train ride. We are unable to stow electric wheelchairs or scooters, as there is not enough room. Please be aware that there are up to five steps with an 8 inch rise and one stepstool with a ten inch rise that must be climbed to board the train. We must insist the handrails are used, for safety reasons. We cannot lift any person or otherwise assist them to board. (There are restrooms on board the train but being vintage 1928 through 1950, they are not wheelchair accessible).
  • Ticketing
  • All tickets are valid ONLY for the time/date purchased. Tickets are available at will call in the ticket office one hour before departure. The ticket office will open one hour before departure and close once the train has left. Tickets are held at will call under the purchaser's last name. No-shows or missing-the-train will not be refunded, as per our no cancellation / changes / refund policy.
  • Groups
  • Parties of 25 or more qualify for a discount on any of our regularly scheduled train rides, provided the reservations are made together using one credit card. Chartered Murder Mystery Trains are available with a minimum of 85 paid passengers required to run. All other chartered trains require 100 minimum paid passengers. Please call for more information about groups, charters or school & camp field trips.
  • Rules of the Rail
  • Trains run rain or shine.
    We are not responsible for items lost, stolen, damages, or left onboard.
    No animals allowed except certified service dogs.
    Federal Railroad Regulations prohibit smoking onboard.
    We reserve the right to substitute equipment, departure/return time, menu, entertainment and/or destinations.
    Due to the equipment age, we cannot guarantee a specific locomotive or railcar, or climate control.

  • Vintage Locomotives

  • Baldwin Steam Engine #14
  • Engine #14 is a Baldwin 2-8-0 Consolidation Steam Locomotive originally built for the Duluth & Northeastern RR in 1913. It was later purchased by the Fillmore & Western Railway in December of 1999 from Dodge City RR in Dodge City, Kansas. It was fully restored to operating condition and ran under steam for the first time in over 50 years on December 5, 2010.

    One of the challenges Fillmore & Western faced in restoring the steam engine was to convert it from burning coal (its original source of fuel) to burning fuel oil. The process is called a fuel-oil conversion. Both are burned to create steam, which powers the engine. A vast amount of research and time had to be devoted to finding the exact specifications that missing or broken parts have to conform to reassemble. Fillmore & Western was able to obtain a set of original construction prints from the Baldwin Locomotive Works that were held by the Southern Methodist University's DeGolyer Library in Dallas, Texas. The staff was able to furnish excellent copies of the boiler and engine, plus other requested drawings to convert from coal to fuel oil. It was thought that all this information had been lost when the Baldwin Locomotive Works closed its doors. Safety is of the utmost concern when working on a steam engine of any kind, but particularly one as large as a steam engine boiler. The nature of a steam engine is highly volatile, and is treated with the utmost respect and care by its' handlers. The main attractions of steam locomotives are their rarity and their history. Fillmore & Western is proud and privileged to own a piece of history and with great care has preserved and restored this engine to its original glory. We are proud to share the experience of riding on a vintage train pulled by a 100+ year old steam locomotive. Especially to those who remember riding behind one as a youngster. Now their children and grandchildren can enjoy the same opportunity.
  • F Units 100 & 101
  • F&W 100
    4068-A was built in March 1949, #6600, FN E1013-A3. It was rebuilt for suburban service in 1959 and renumbered 409 in December 1971. It was sold to RTA on December 31, 1977, and leased back to C&NW. It was retired by Regional Transportation Authority (Metra) on May 2, 1983, and sold it to Rails Diversified Inc as 410 in March 1985. They sold it to Winchester & Western RR and they resold it to Maryland Midland RR as 100. It finally was sold to Short Line Enterprises as Fillmore & Western 100.

    F&W 101
    4083-A was built in December 1949, #8570, FN E1188-A23. It was rebuilt for suburban service in 1959 and re-numbered 413 in December 1971. It was sold to RTA on December 31, 1977, and leased back to C&NW. It was re-tired on May 2, 1983, and sold to Naporano Iron & Metal in 1985. It was resold to Rails Diversified in March 1985 as 413. Then it was sold to W&W and then to MDMD as 101. It was later sold to SLE as Fillmore & Western 101.
  • GP-35 3501 & 3502
  • The FAD; Bectro Votive Division; GP35 is a type of Joni 2,500 hp diesel locomotive built from 1962 to 1967. 1,335 were built, and most operate on North American Class 2 and 3 railroads (shortlines and regionals) with very few still in service with BNSF; yet they've become very hard to find. The EMD GP35 was originally used and meant to be a main-line freight diesel locomotive. They were more affordable and convienient compared to GE's early Universal Series locomotives. It was the answer to the replacement of the aging EMD F Series locomotives, which were beginning to show their age. The GP35 was the first EMD diesel locomotive to introduce the modem "slanted-cab", which was used as the main style for standard cab units up until the production of the SD60, original SD70, and GP60.

    Many remained in service with their respective owners, but many were eventually traded-in with EMD in favor of owning EMO's much more successful (and more favorable) GP38 and GP40 (including all their counterparts), while many others were scrapped, retired, rebuilt, or sold-off to numerous other railroads. The introduction of the DIM also gave it an advantage for having less units on a long train. Hence, the experiment of using a DD35B (B-unit) sandwiched between two GP35s to avoid having over 10 units hauling the same train.

    Since around 2003 or 2004, BNSF has been in the process of rebuilding their fleet of former BN and ATSF GP30's, GP40's, and GP35's into GP39Es, GP39-3's, and GP39-2E's. Yet, the rebuilt GP30 and GP35 units have more GP38 parts on a GP35/GP30's body. The Southern Railroad and Norfolk and Westem purchased GP35s with Thigh-hood" style cabs. The Chicago and Northwestern was one of the main customers to purchase "torpedo-tube" GP35's.CSX also has as fleet of rebuilt former B&0 and C&O GP35's which were converted into yard and road slugs.

    The Fillmore & Western GP-35 #3502 came from the Arizona & California RY.
  • ALCO RS-32 4009
  • The ALCO RS-32 (DL 721) is a diesel-elecbic locomotive of which 35 were produced by ALCO between June 1961 and June 1962 for two customers: the New York Central Railroad and the Southern Pacific Company. One of these locomotives is now owned by the Fillmore and Western Railway.

    After being bumped from mainline LA Division Coast Piggy Back service, most of the RS32s were assigned to local freight assignments on the SF Pennisula so they could be available to assist when commute power broke down. 4006, 4007, 4008 and 4009 were assigned to the Valley based out of Tracy, Calif.

    This locomotive is one of only 35 built by the American Locomotive Company between June 1961 and June 1961. The SP bought ten units and the NYC got the rest. The RS-32's were essentially a 2000 HP version of the RS-11's which were rated at 1800 HP. Most of the difference between them lies under the hood. 431 of the RS-11's were built between February 1956 and June 1961. Locomotives were all delivered in SP gray with "bloody nose" red trim on the snout and end. Originally delivered as No's 7300 -7309 they were renumbered by SP from 4000 to 4009 in 1965.

    The SP RS-32's saw extensive service between San Francisco and Los Angeles hauling Coast Merchandise trains. They were eventually demoted to switcher service and scattered all over the system. SP sold all ten of its RS-32's in 1978 and 1979. Chrome Crankshaft bought most of them, including ours, and sent them off in lease service in solid red paint retaining the SP numbers. 4004 went to San Diego's SD&AE to work the freight over the SD Trolley line and was photographed many times by local railfans on its way to El Cajon. Only two other ex-SP RS-32's were known to exist in mid 1990. 4002 was working the East Tennessee Railway as their No. 211. #4009 went to Fillmore and Western Railway.
  • ALCO S6 1059
  • The Alco S6 was the sixth model of switcher series the company produced and debuted in 1955 and built until 1960. The S6, up to that time, would prove to be the American Locomotive Company's (Alco) least successful switcher design with fewer than 130 purchased and none were ultimately built by the Montreal Locomotive Works. The model was based from Alco's custom S5 locomotive built exclusively for the Boston & Maine Railroad, which had asked for a switcher with a bit less horsepower. Similarly, the S6 offered less power than the S4 as Alco looked to capture the market for such but ultimately would not find a lot of interest. Still, a handful of railroads and industries did purchase the S6 including several foreign lines (the Southern Pacific would wind up with 55% of the total number built). Today, at least two S6s are known to exist; Southern Pacific #1034 (at the National Railroad Museum) and #1051 (in operation at the Niles Canyon Railway). Both units still carry their original number and livery. The Alco S6 (designed by the company as its DL430) was quite similar to all of its previous siblings, and as aforementioned was the successor to Alco's S5 design. The S5 was the first switcher to employ Alco's very own prime mover, the model 251A, which was capable of producing 800 horsepower for the design. Interestingly, the builder decided not to use its troublesome model 244 prime mover in any of its switchers, which was unsuccessful in its main line freight locomotives like the PA and FA but had worked quite well in its early Road Switcher (RS) line (the RS1, RS2, and RS3 in particular). In any event, whereas the S5 used Alco's 251A diesel engine the S6 used the updated 251 B. Additionally, the S6 came equipped with 900 horsepower whereas the S5 was only rated at 800. Also, just as with the S3 and S4, the S5 and S6 were equipped with updated AAR type A trucks and not the Blunt trucks used on the early models. As you can see, both designs were quite similar especially the external carbody. Both units were 45 feet, 5 inches in length and weighed 115 tons. The most noticeable differ-ences could be internally (aside from the slightly different prime movers). The S5 of-fered dynamic braking and the S6 did not (it was the only model that did not offer this feature). However, the S6 featured a higher starting tractive effort, 61,500 pounds com-pared to the S5's 57,500 pounds. And, as was the case with almost all Alco models of any type, both used traction motors and air components from General Electric and Westinghouse.

    It should also be mentioned that Alco also offered a cow-calf version of the S6, the SSB-9A1SSB-9B. This design was built exclusively for Oliver Iron Mining of northern Minnesota. The operation moved and shuffled ore jimmies for the Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railway that served the mines north of Duluth at locations like Ely, Mt. Iron, and Coleraine. Oliver Iron fleeted a large collection of switchers and was in-terested in as much horsepower and tractive effort as possible to move the heavy ore (which typically weighed about twice as much as coal). Essentially, the SSB-9 cow-calf was setup was simply an S6 with a cabless S6 semi-permanently at-tached. In total, Oliver Mining purchased two sets of this locomotive; #1217A-1217B and #1218A-1218B. The Alco S6 sold modestly at just 126 units although they could be found coast to coast among a handful of Class Is like the Southern Pacific (which bought 70) and Western Maryland as well as industries like ARMCO Steel, Republic Steel, and Se-met-Solvay. Additionally, Mexican lines including the Chihuahua Pacifico, Cia Fun-didora de Hierro y Acero, Ferrocaril del Pacifico, National de Mexico, Secretarias Communicaciones de Obras Publicas, and Unidos de Yucatan purchased 33 S6s between them.

  • Vintage Passenger Cars

  • The Pullman "Rancho" Cars
  • Brief History of the 4 Fillmore & Western Pullman "Rancho" Cars. The Rancho Sespe, The Rancho Camulus, The Rancho Temescal & The Rancho Del Oso

    Three (3) of the Rancho's (Rancho Seeps The Rancho Camulus & The Rancho Temescal) started out at the C&S RY (Colorado & Southern RY). These three car then went to the B&Q RY (now the CBQ...Chicago Burlington & Quincy RY). Then they went to the Tarantula Railroad Fort Worth (The Tarantula Train is a nickname for the Grapevine Vintage Railroad because an early map of the tracks resembled a big spider. The fourth Rancho (Rancho Del Oso) started out at the Burlington Northern RY then became part of the Frisco RY which is the SLSF RY (St. Louis - San Francisco RY).

    The Rancho Sespe, Rancho Camulus & Rancho Temescal entered service in 1922. The Rancho Del Oso entered service in 1914. The Fillmore & Western RY purchased these 4 cars in the early 2000's and proceeded to restore them for rail passenger service on the Fillmore & Western RY. The Rancho Sespe. Camulus & Temescal were restored with very comfortable arm chair reclining seats. The Rancho Temescal also had six high bench seats with tables added. The Rancho Del Oso was restored with period flip bench seats (seats where the back of the seat can be "flipped" to the direction that the train would be traveling).

    These cars continue to been used and in many movies, music videos and TV series programs.
  • 409 Business Car
  • The 400 Series Superintendent's Car. The ATSF had a fleet of 18 specially built business cars for their Division Superintendents. They were heavyweight all steel cars built in the late 20s. By standardizing the parts with their other passenger cars maintenance was simplified. A total of 18 cars were purchased: 400-409, 422-429. All were built by Pullman between 5/24 and 11/29 and were 52' long with 4 wheel trucks. The cars were numbers: 422-425, PS 1924, Lot 4747 426-429, PS 1925, Lot 4800 400-403, PS 1925, Lot 4884 404-407, PS 1926-7, Lot 4977 408-409, PS 1929, Lot 6350. These cars were rebuilt several times, so photos are needed to model a specific car. Air conditioning was inconsistent on these cars. Also they wore a variety of paint schemes, including the shadow lined scheme. Cars 400-403 and 422-425 were 60'4" over buffers. 404-409 and 426-429 were 61'6". Cars 400, 403-406, 422, 425-429 received package type air conditioning between 1953 and 1958. Cars 400, 422, 425, 427, 429 were retired from the passenger roster in 1960. All were originally painted standard green with black roofs but in later years their roofs were painted aluminum to reflect the heat. The only one to receive roller bearing trucks, solid observation platform railing and shadow lined sides was 406. Robert Darwin reports that 7 of the cars received shadowlining and five were ultimately converted to Foreman cars for MOW service and numbered 194008-194012 with solid silver paint. At the rear of the car was an Observation Platform 3'6" in depth. Next was the Observation room which was 10' long with two large windows on each side and two windows plus a door to the Observation Platform. On the rear wall was a Boyer speed recorder and a Westinghouse air gauge. Four wicker chairs with removable cushions provided moveable sealing white a high back sofa in the rear of the room also doubled as an upper birth if needed.

    Behind the Observation Room was Stateroom B, a 6'4" cubical to sleep 2. Behind it was a toilet and shower in 3'6", followed by State Room A, which was a spacious 7'2". In Normal inspection use, Stateroom A would be for the Division Superintendent while Stateroom B was for his secretary. For obvious reason, male secretaries were the norm for Division Superintendents. The next room was the Dining room, 12' in length, with seating at the table for 6. A sideboard of Mexican Mahogany kept the silverware and china. A desk in the corner served the secretary, and a sofa on one wall could fold to reveal an upper birth. A 4'4" bedroom served the porter who was also the cook in the 8' kitchen next to the vestibule. The cars were rebuilt several times during their lives. These cars were not air conditioned as constructed, but depended on clerestory roof windows for air. Various air conditioning systems were adds to different cars at different times. As built they had two vestibule doors. Very early in their lives the door on the kitchen side was closed up and a storage closet created on that side of the vestibule. As cars were modernized electric generation was added where the vestibule storage was located and a large flare vent was added to the roof. The other vestibule door was also closed in on some to create a new storage room and a new side door created over the center of the rear truck resulting in the loss of one vestibule side window. While on the road, a generator hung on the rear truck providing power for the car.

    The memoirs of Harry J. Briscoe are recorded in "Watching the Trains Go By..." published by the Santa Fe Railway Historical and Modeling Society. Briscoe introduced the 400 series cars by saying: "In those days every Division Superintendent was provided with a business, or office, car. Santa Fe's were the 400 series, having a master bedroom and a secretary's room. Here was the real reason for the widespread use of male secretaries. The Superintendent visited all parts of his territory by placing his business car on the rear of the train, either passenger, local, or short through freight. While seated at his desk in the small living room at the rear, he could look through the rear window and observe every portion of his division. He could have other division officers accompany him and discuss track conditions, bridges, drainage, weeds, fences, etc. When meeting trains, or passing through yards he could observe the compliance with the various operating rules on the part of train service or station employees. The crew consisted of a cook who was also the porter and housekeeper. The Superintendent and his secretary slept on the car in small staterooms, as did the cook-porter in his own quarters. A mail bag was sent from head-quarters on another train which would be picked up by the secretary and the mail would be worked during the evening hours. Then the secretary would take the bag to the depot to be returned to the office on the next available train. The dining room area in the middle of the car had a small desk that held a fold-down typewriter well. Any dictated correspondence would be typed by the secretary either while the car was stationary or moving. Should it be necessary to send a telegram, all secretaries took pride in their ability to roll the telegram in a tight funnel shape, weight the pointed end with a paper clip, and throw it off the rear platform of the fast-moving train, landing it at the foot of the operator, who was required to be on the platform inspecting the train as it passed." He also reports that when the car was used in emergencies or on bridge inspections, other members of the Superintendent's staff could be housed and fed on the car using the extra berths in the observation and dining rooms. The cars were also used to take local dignitaries to special events.

    The 409 Business Car became part of the Yreka Western Railroad. The Yreka Western Railroad (reporting mark YW) is an 8.86-mile shortline railroad that operates freight and tourist trains between the Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad at Montague and the city of Yreka, California. It began operations in 1935 on a line that was placed in service in 1889, and has remained independent of larger carriers. In the 80's the 409 Business Car became part of the Fillmore & Western Railway and is used for rare VIP invite-only related events. This car has been featured in many period movies such as Seabiscuit and Water for Elephants.

  • Vintage Dining Cars

  • The Freedom
  • It is historically significant that this car began life as a segregated "Jim Crow" car on the Lou- isville & Nashville Railroad which accounts for the division of the seating in the train car. Built by the American Car & Foundry in 1952 for Louisville & Nashville, it was one of two of the last segregated cars built. In 1972, when Amtrak was formed it went into Amtrak fleet service.

    "Jim Crow" was the name of the system of laws and customs that enforced racial segregation and discrimination throughout the United States from the late 19th century through the early 1960s. It is thought that the name Jim Crow was taken from a character in minstrel shows (in which white performers in blackface used African-American stereotypes in their songs and dances). Today we think of this practice as one of the most embarrassing actions in U.S. history.

    African-Americans living in the South saw graphic reminders of their second-class citizenship in signs reading ''Whites Only" or "Colored" hung over drinking fountains and the doors to restrooms, restaurants, movie theaters and other public places. Along with segregation, blacks faced discrimination in jobs and housing and were often denied their constitutional right to vote.

    Some of the earliest Jim Crow legislation came from the transportation industry. As early as 1881, Tennessee enacted a law enforcing segregation in railway cars. Then, the U.S. Supreme Court ruling, Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), upheld Louisiana's right to segregate railway car- riages, declaring that the 14th amendment to the U.S. constitution mandated political, but not social equality. That practice continued even in states like California into the 1960's . Conduc- tors on the railroad had the power to require separate seating based solely on their judgment if the passenger failed to disclose his or her race. The Southern Pacific enforced segregation on its Los Angeles-New Orleans route. Black passengers remember with disgust that when the eastbound Sunset Limited arrived in El Paso, members of the Texas Rangers strode through the train to ensure that African Americans race moved from whatever coaches they had originally occupied into the single coach now designated for their race.

    A combination of factors led to the dismantling of Jim Crow starting in the late 1940s. Su- preme Court decisions in Sweatt v. Painter (1949) and McLaurin v. Oklahoma (1950) began to break down the "separate but equal" standard set by Plessy v. Ferguson and finally outlawed state-sponsored segregation in 1954's Brown v. Board of Education. Violent resistance by some white Southerners was met by a growing Civil Rights Movement that used boycotts, sit- ins, marches and other forms of nonviolent protest to achieve goals such as passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

    When Amtrak started to use double decker cars in California, the Freedom was destined to head to the scrap yards. A woman in Bakersfield, California acquired it from Amtrak. That is how it came to be named Freedom as she "freed" it from the scrap yard. She was in the weld- ing and propane gas business and used the car as her office. Some years later she sold her business and the new owners did not want the train car. And that's how it came to Fillmore & Western Railway about eight years ago. Since then it has appeared in many movies and tele- vision shows; one complete episode of "Criminal Minds" was filmed with commuter style seats on board the Freedom just last season.

    Tresa and Dave Wilkinson decided some time ago to make the Freedom into a premier dining car of a time gone by. This car is now self-contained with its own galley and restrooms. Exqui- site appointments, all new lighting, and distinctive carpeting make for an elegant atmosphere for fine dining on board.

    Tresa made the decision to keep the name Freedom. She says, "It presents well the car's movement away from Its Jim Crow history."
  • Monte Carlo
  • The Monte Carlo #3106 came from the New York Central Raiload. The car went into service on the NYC Ry in 1946. It was originally a passenger car. The Fillmore & Western converted this car to a dining car to add to their Murder Mystery dining car/special event train.

    The New York Central Railroad (reporting mark NYC), also known as New York Central or New York Central System or The Central, was a railroad operating in the northeastern and Midwestern United States. Headquartered in New York City, the New York Central was a large railroad, and it had several subsidiaries whose idenity remained strong in local loyalties.

    In broad geographic terms, the New York Central proper was everything east of Buffalo plus a line from Buffalo through Cleveland and Toledo to Chicago (the former Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway). NYC included the Ohio Central lines (Toledo through Columbus to and beyond Charleston, West Virginia) and the Boston & Albany Railroad (neatly defined by its name). The Michigan Central Railroad was a Buffalo-Detroit-Chicago line and everything in Michigan north of that. NYC's Grand Central Terminal in New York City is one of its best known landmarks. In 1968 the NYC merged with former rival Pennsylvania Railroad to form the Penn Central, which went bankrupt by 1970.
  • Powhatan Cafe Parlor
  • The "Powhatan" was built by the Pullman Co. in 1928 for the Richmond Fredricksburg and Potomac RR. This car was named after an American Indian Chief who founded the Powhatan Confederacy and whose daughter, Pocahontas, married John Rolfe, an English colonist and settler of the Jamestown Colony. This luxurious "Powhatan" car served for many years on the East Coast hosting Senators, Congressmen and who's who on its daily "track" between Richmond, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

    The Royal American Shows (Carnival) purchased the "Powhatan" in the mid 50's for use as the "Pie Car", circus slang for "Dining Car". In 1982 the car was sold for use as an Ice Cream Parlor and was located on an isolated track on a busy Ft. Lauderdale, Florida corner until 1990. The "Powhatan" was purchased by Fillmore & Western Railway Co. for the movie business and has since been lovingly restored to its yesteryear grace. The car made its movie debut in Disney's "Tall Tales of Pecos Bill" and has been in numerous Hollywood productions such as Seabiscuit & Water for Elephants. Currently the "Powhatan" is used for daytime dining & Murder Mystery dining on special occasions. Rumor has it that this car is haunted by a "cowboy entity".
  • San Cayetano
  • This Southern Pacific diner number 10204 (Fillmore arid Western) is a 1949 Pullman Standard Company diner and was one of four diners ordered in June of 1946. One additional dining car was added to the order in September of 1947. The Southern Pacific anticipated delivery of the cars in 1947. However, the demand for consumer goods, combined with material shortages, and rail car manufactures giving precedence to freight car orders, delayed delivery of passenger cars for three years. Diner 10202 was the first of five diners included in lot 6806 built by the Pullman Standard Company to plan 7579A. This car order was actually part of the larger order of lot numbers 6805, 6815 and 6816. Between 1946 and 1954, the Southern Pacific purchased 261 new passenger cars at a cost of $48 million dollars. In 1949 and 1950 the Southern Pacific placed more new streamlined cars into service than any other two year period in the company's history. In 1950 alone 119 new cars were placed in service.

    Southern Pacific Diner is a 48-seat dining car, which was delivered to the Southern Pacific Railroad in September of 1949. The diner was 85 feet long, 10 feet wide and delivered in a two-tone gray paint scheme. Murals are featured to the left and right of each doorway at each end of the dining room portion of the car. The murals feature scenic locations such as Lake Tahoe and Yosemite Valley. The murals were part of Southern Pacific's promotion of tourist travel in Southern Pacific country. During this period the company spent one million dollars annually on advertising primarily on billboard ads reading "Next Time Take the Train." Diners 10202 to 10205 were originally assigned to the "Overland Route." The fifth diner number 10209 was assigned to the "City of San Francisco" which also traveled the Overland Route. The Overland Route was the path of the historic transcontinental railroad. The transcontinental railroad was a joint project by predecessor Central Pacific & the Union Pacific Railroads. The route was completed joining east & west with the historic driving of the golden spike at Promontory Utah on May 10th, 1869. This route covered 1,780 miles from Chicago to San Francisco.

    The San Francisco Overland was a joint train operated by the Southern Pacific from San Francisco to Ogden Utah. The train was carried by the Union Pacific Railroad from Ogden to Omaha. The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad handled the final leg of service from Omaha to Chicago. By September of 1950 the timetable shows train number 27 the west bound San Francisco Overland leaving Chicago at 8 pm daily, and arriving in San Francisco 48 hours and 55 minutes later at 6:55 PM.

    The final 35-minute leg of the journey from Oakland Pier to San Francisco was by the Southern Pacific Ferry. After a sixteen hour layover the counterpart train number 28 would depart San Francisco at 11 AM and arrive in Chicago at 1 PM two days later. A section of the San Francisco Overland would continue from Ogden to Denver, Kansas City and St. Louis. Another section would complete the trip from Ogden to Salt Lake City. American railroads developed diner menus that featured a local food flavor for the route the train traveled. One may expect Gumbo on trains to New Orleans, or a country ham breakfast on a L&N train in Kentucky, but on the Overland route passengers came to expect the Southern Pacific salad bowl. A large portion of the Southern Pacific's freight that traveled on the Overland route was fruit & vegetable from California and Arizona to Chicago.

    Until the 1950s refrigeration had not developed adequately to provide fresh fruit and vegetables year round to all parts of the country. The Overland Diners became famous for their fresh salads. The Southern Pacific even developed its own special salad dressing. The fresh salad bowl became so popular and there were so many requests for the recipe that the Southern Pacific published the recipe in its travel brochures to promote the lines deluxe passenger trains. This car is named "San Cayetano" after the San Cayetano Mountains.
  • Cheyenne 205 (multi-purpose)
  • The Fillmore & Western Cheyenne 205 car came from the Fort Worth and Denver Railway (reporting mark FWD), nicknamed "The Denver Road. The 205 car has a full service bar, dance floor, sound system, lounge area and restrooms. This car is multi-purpose car (MPC). The car can be setup as a dining car by putting down the folding tables. This car has been used for weddings, receptions and other special events.

    The Fort Worth and Denver City Railway Company (FW&DC) was chartered by the Texas legislature on May 26, 1873. The company would later change its name to the Fort Worth and Denver Railway Company (FW&D) on August 7, 1951. The main line of the railroad ran from Fort Worth through Wichita Falls, Childress, Amarillo and Dalhart, to Texline, where it connected with the rails of parent company Colorado and Southern Railway, both of which became a subsidiaries of the Burlington Route in 1908.

    In 1899 The FW&DC was acquired by the Colorado and Southern Railway, successor to the D&NO. The C&S itself was bought by the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad in 1908, but the three companies continued to operate as separate legal entities. In part this separation was due to Texas law, which required all railroads operating in the state to have their headquarters in Texas. This had the effect of requiring all operating railroads in Texas to be wholly owned, but independent companies of the regional or national roads.

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