Museums | Special Interest Groups


Smithsonian National Museum of American History

In 2003, the Smithsonian completely renovated of its transportation hall with an installation of a major new exhibition, "America on the Move." Representing urban transportation in the post-World War II period is Chicago, with elaborate displays on both the "L" and bus transit. The exhibit includes a restored car 6719 and a replica of part of Madison/Wabash station.

Illinois Railway Museum

The Illinois Railway Museum at Union, IL has a fantastic collection of passenger, steam, commuter and "L" trains and rail memorabilia. Among their "L" equipment collection are several wood-bodied cars, sets of 4000s, one of the three 5000s, three sets of 6000s, three 1-50 series singles, and the only museum-preserved set of Pullman 2000s.

Fox River Trolley Museum

The Fox River Trolley Museum in South Elgin, IL is an outdoor, admission-free museum that offers rides on various "L" cars, as well as CNS&M and CA&E interurban cars. In their collection are three 4000s, the only operating 5000-series car, the CTA's Historic 6000-series cars (6101-6102), and two 1-50 series singles.

East Troy Electric Railroad Museum

The East Troy Electric Railroad runs from Mukwonago to East Troy in southeast Wisconsin. Built in 1907 by the Milwaukee Electric Railway & Light Company, it continues in its 92nd year as both a living shortline as well as a museum. Their collection includes 4000- and 1-50 series cars.

Appleton Trolley Museum (Trolley Car '86 Inc.)

An all-volunteer organization that works closely with the city of Appleton, WI and is dedicated to the restoration and operation of working electric streetcars for the enjoyment and education of all. They operate the only original restored Milwaukee city streetcar in the Midwestern United States and is also the home of 1-50 series CTA car 28.

Special Interest Groups

Central Electric Railfans Association (CERA)

The Central Electric Railfans' Association was formed in 1938 to encourage the study of the history, equipment and operation of urban, suburban, interurban, and main line electric railways. Based in Chicago, CERA is the premier railfans group with a focus on Chicago-area and Midwestern electric traction.

Shore Line Interurban Historical Society

The Shore Line Interurban Historical Society is a railfan group interested in the electric railways of the Chicago area. The Society's primary focus are the North Shore Line, South Shore Line, and CA&E, as well as several other Chicago area electrics, including the "L", the Chicago Surface Lines, and others. The Society has a number of functions and activities, including production of First & Fastest magazine, a high-quality quarterly publication about the Chicagoland electric railways.