The Historic Railcars Are Home!
The 10 historic railcars were moved from Harris Nuclear Plant five miles down public roadways to the North Carolina Railway Museum/New Hope Valley Railway the week of May 9, 2022. They are now at home in the rail yard awaiting eventual restoration.
You may view video footage on our YouTube channel playlist (please subscribe to the Triangle Train New Hope Valley Railway YouTube channel) from the first day when one of two cabooses was moved and a flatcar.
Read more about the historic cars in this May 18 article that was in Duke Energy’s Illumination newsletter.
Thank you to all who contributed in helping us raise a total of nearly $200,000 toward our Save the 10 project, including $50,000 in state appropriations. We still need to eventually restore these railcars, so we are still taking donation (see below).
Update April 2022: published an article about our Save the Ten project. Click to read it here: http://apex.suburbanlivingmag.com/save-the-ten-preserves-historic-train-cars-by-janice-lewine/. The move is now planned for the month of May. The next ride is the May Brew ‘n’ Choo, after the move.
History of the Save the Ten Project
Located less than five miles from the North Carolina Railway Museum (NCRM), which is home to the New Hope Valley Railway (NHVR), were 10 historic railroad cars parked at a disconnected railway siding on Duke Energy’s Shearon Harris Nuclear Power Plant property. Our all-volunteer railway is raised funds to save the railroad cars from the scrap yard and moved all 10 cars to the museum’s rail yard in spring 2022. In the mid-1990s, the NCRM acquired four railroad cars which were then stored on Shearon Harris’ property until they could eventually be moved to the museum’s rail yard. Shortly after 9-11 occurred, plant security tightened and we were unable to enter the plant area to visit our cars until late 2019. After visiting the museum’s four cars in fall 2019, a few NCRM volunteers discovered that Duke Energy had an additional six railroad cars they were willing to donate to the museum—if we could pay to move them. Unfortunately, shortly after discussions began to move the cars, the COVID-19 pandemic started in early 2020. Nearly all NHVR’s rides during its 2020 season were canceled due to the pandemic, and the few rides that did happen were limited to 30 percent capacity. Since most of the our revenue comes from train ride ticket sales, this left us with a lot of lost income and depleted our rainy day fund. Below are the 10 railroad cars that were moved to the NCRM rail yard. Items 1-4 are owned by NCRM and are in weathered condition but restorable. Items 5 and 6 are owned by Duke Energy and are being donated to NCRM.
- Historic ex-Pullman sleeper, originally called the Calais, but later re-named the Alexandria, that was built in 1916. In the late 1940’s it was acquired by the Seaboard Air Line Railroad and converted into a foreman/cook car for use on maintenance trains. Much later, one end was altered to appear to be an observation car. Rumor has it, this modification was done so that the car could be used in a movie featuring a presidential candidate speaking from the back.
- Atlantic Coast Line Baggage-Express car, that was used for carrying luggage, baggage and mail on passenger trains. The inside is wide-open and ideal for our eventual use as a new display space.
- Ex-Pullman baggage/RPO car, built in the 1910’s originally for the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad. It was later acquired by the “old” Norfolk Southern Railway and converted to a “camp car” for maintenance crews to use eat and sleep. Inside are bunk beds, seating, a kitchen and restroom. This car was used in trains with the NS #711 crane tender car currently on the NCRM property.
- Hi-Cube Tall Boxcar, which is believed to be one of the last surviving original paint Chesapeake and Ohio Railway 60-foot-high cube plug door box cars.
- Two cabooses, slated to be scrapped but in great condition. They are equipped with comforts such as a kitchen, air conditioning, bathroom and electric generator and were used by Carolina Power & Light (now Duke Energy) in its operations. The NCRM would hope to eventually restore these cars and used them as part of the operations at NHVR.
- Four flat cars, also slated to be scrapped. These cars are unusual because they have depressed centers from when they were used by Duke Energy for specialized purposes in plant operations in North Carolina. They could eventually be converted by the NCRM to carry passengers on the Triangle’s Triangle’s Train.
It will cost just under $10,000 on average for each railroad car to be moved to the NCRM totaling nearly $100,000. Each car will be lifted by crane onto a flatbed truck, transported five miles to the NCRM rail yard, and then another crane will lift the cars from the truck to a set of tracks at the railway. If we exceed our goal, money raised will go toward stabilizing or refurbishing these cars for preservation or NCRM use where possible. If you have any questions concerning “Save the Ten”, please email them to email@example.com and one of our volunteers will respond.
How to Donate
The NCRM is now restoring and preserving these railcars and cabooses. Anyone can donate by:
1. Mail a check (avoid processing fees) to:
North Carolina Railway Museum, Inc. P.O. Box 40 New Hill, NC 27562 Attn: Save the Ten Please note “Save the Ten” in the memo portion of your check.
2. Make an online donation via Network For Good link
Please click the Donate Now to make your online donation!
3. Sponsor Level Contributions
The NCRM is also offering the sponsor level incentives for larger contributions. These sponsorship levels provide a tiered level of special benefits ideally suited for businesses or groups that wish to make a bigger impact. NCRM will work with large group, corporate, or individual sponsors to arrange public recognition though our PR/media programs and on-site at the railroad museum. These incentives are also available, if desired, to individuals, families or neighborhood groups making contributions at these levels. Any company, group or individual wishing to be a sponsor should make their payment by check mailed to the PO Box shown above and indicate “ATTN: Save the Ten Sponsorship” on the envelope. Please provide your email address with your check so that you may be contacted by one of our volunteers with further details as to how to schedule the benefits listed below:
- $1,000 – 10 tickets on any regular* train ride
- $2,500 – Above plus two private caboose rides (for up to 8 riders each) on any regular* train ride
- $5,000 – Above plus four Operate-A-Loco (OAL) sessions for use anytime on any regularly scheduled OAL days
- $10,000 – Private Charter Train Ride and use of the main yard for a group or corporate event in 2022 (rider capacity up to 250 w/ no COVID restrictions) plus eight OAL sessions for use anytime on any regularly scheduled OAL days in 2021 or 2022. (Charter scheduled at mutually available date/time.)
- $20,000 – Private Charter Train Ride Day for up to 4 round trip train rides for an event in 2022 (total rider capacity 1,000 w/ no COVID restrictions) plus 12 OAL sessions for use anytime on any regularly scheduled OAL Days in 2021 or 2022. (Charter scheduled at mutually available date.)
*Regular train rides exclude annual special October Halloween or December Santa train rides. If you have any questions concerning “Save the Ten”, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our volunteers will respond. This solicitation of funds is sanctioned by the NCRM Board of Directors.