Railroad Historical Society adds historic rail car to its fleet

The Riding Mountain Park car was manufactured in 1954.

HILLSDALE — Looking to expand its rail tourism program, the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society just added a new historic railroad car to its fleet.

The Riding Mountain Park car is a unique first class passenger car built in 1954 for transcontinental passenger train service on the Canadian Pacific and will operate in the Hillsdale area following restoration.

“Passenger cars like this were common in the postwar ‘streamliner’ era and were usually found on the railroad’s most popular or well-known routes,” said Kelly Lynch, the company’s vice president.

Lynch said that while the car will remain mostly in its original condition, the “observation dome car” will require about $250,000 in mechanical and electrical upgrades and interior restoration and furnishings.

The antique locomotive has been added to the fleet of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society.

“It’s in pretty good shape, all things considered,” he said.

Much of the interior artwork remains intact, created by members of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts.

For 10 years the car was in storage at the Adrian & Blissfield Rail Road Co. in Blissfield, Michigan after being sold to a private owner in 2005.

The addition of the new car was made possible by a donor, and the company plans to accept donations to restore the car.