Engineers of Prosperity conference occurs in April

By | April 15, 2015

MAPR-logoMuddy Creeks, Pa. — The Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad Preservation Society is hosting the first joint conference of the two leading national rail preservation organizations, April 16 – 18, 2015. The Association of Tourist Railroads and Railway Museums (ATRRM) and the National Railway Historical Society (NRHS) are meeting together in a spring conference that has been two years in the making. Over 100 leading figures in rail preservation from all over the U.S. and Canada are expected to attend. The Yorktowne Hotel, 48 East Market Street, York, is serving as the official conference hotel.

The York area has a rich railway history that includes pioneer locomotive builder Phineas Davis. He built the first coal burning locomotive and developed the B & O’s (Baltimore and Ohio’s) grasshopper design. Just south of York City is the Howard Tunnel, the oldest railway tunnel in the United States. Starting in the late 1800’s, Billmeyer and Small was a major railroad car builder for standard and narrow gauge lines. By the 1930’s, York’s thriving industrial operations were being served by more than 130 dedicated sidings.

The conference program starts on Thursday, April 16 at the York County Heritage Trust, 250 East Market Street, York, with a 6:00 pm reception followed by 7:00 pm presentation. “Steel Rails to the White Rose City: The Northern Central Railway in York County, PA,” will be presented by Fred Wrabel. Between 1974 and 1986, Wrabel served the Pennsylvania Railroad Technical and Historical Society in a variety of capacities, including editor, writer and President for the Chesapeake Chapter. He created displays for Amtrak, Conrail, the Baltimore Streetcar Museum and others. He has written over twenty lecture/slide presentations. Before and after the presentation, at least a half dozen local rail attractions will have display tables at the Heritage Trust to showcase what they have available for the public. Both activities are free and open to the public.