For those who love trains, Washington state is filled with American railroad history. Part of the unexplored West, Washington became a huge part of shipping grain and other goods by rail. Come see and experience what life was like well over a century ago at these interactive train museums.
Northwest Railway Museum
38625 SE King Street
Snoqualmie, WA 98065
Visit a Victorian depot. Learn how the railway changed Washington and influenced settlement. See and feel the excitment of a working railroad. Experience what travel was like before Interstate highways. Hear all the bells and whistles. Travel back in time. See the sights and all the sites. Shop in a book store and find a new book. Enjoy it for the pure spectacle! Experience a train excursion aboard antique railroad coaches through the Upper Snoqualmie Valley over five miles of rail. Check website for details.
Northern Pacific Railway Museum
10 South Asotin Avenue
Toppenish, WA 98948
The museum has been made to recreate the ambience of the 1930s Northern Pacific Railroad. The depot has been restored to its early appearance and gives an opportunity for the visitor to view many aspects of early railroad transportation. Its many artifacts help to demonstrate the importance of railroad transportation to the development of our community and the entire Western United States. The museum’s regular season is May – October.
Yakima Valley Trolleys
South Third Avenue & West Pine Street
Yakima, WA 98902
Preserving America’s last intact, early 20th Century, interurban electric railroad, the Yakima Valley Trolleys organization was incorporated in 2001 to operate the railroad for the City of Yakima. Present and future generations are able to experience an early-American street railway almost exactly as it was 100 years ago and come to understand the important role transit held in developing the City of Yakima as well as the rest of the industrialized world. Come take a ride on an authentic streetcar (trolley). There are four streetcars and two electric freight locomotives, all of which were built between 1909 and 1930. You’ll also see a train of vintage freight cars at the museum.
Ritzville Railroad Depot Museum
201 W. Railroad Avenue
Ritzville, WA 99169
During the early 20th century, Ritzville was the largest and heaviest grain shipping railroad station in the world which is why the Northern Pacific built such a large depot in such a small town. At one time 8 to 10 passenger trains arrived each day in Ritzville. Rail travel continued to be popular for many years after the turn of the century. Ritzville residents could ride the train to Spokane early in the morning and return that same evening. Passenger service to Ritzville was discontinued in 1972 after which the depot was used by railroad maintenance crews. In 1988, Burlington Northern deeded the depot to the City of Ritzville. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989 and is part of Ritzville’s National Historic District. The depot has changed very little. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Washington State Railroads Historical Society Museum
122 N. Tacoma Ave.
Pasco, WA 99301
Pasco served as a major rail hub for the Northern Pacific & SP&S Railways, and on June 21, 1955 Northern Pacific Railway built its first “pushbutton” hump-yards at Pasco and to this day Pasco remains a major hub for the BNSF. From the Great Northern Railway, Milwaukee Road,to the Northern Pacific, Union Pacific, SP&S Railway and
all the railroads in between. Discover railroad history through displays, photos, and collected and donated items, including the state’s oldest existing locomotive. Open Fridays and Saturdays, May – December.