MRTM Planning Three New Exhibits for the Reopening

Construction has begun on the conversion if Central Station to a Curio by Hilton hotel.  We are planning three new exhibits that we want to have ready for the reopening that will improve the museum and help us tell the Memphis railroad history story better for you.

The first exhibit will be a mural that will be an illustrated timeline of the Canadian National back to its origin the Mississippi and Tennessee railroad. And the Norfolk Southern back to its origin the Lagrange and Memphis railroad.  The timelines will be supplemented with photos and storyboards and will be produced by the same vendor that did our other 3 murals. His work is as good as any done in any other museum.

The second exhibit will be a Fairmont M9 motor Car from the Illinois Central Railroad. These cars were used by track crews and signal maintainers. This car is in excellent condition and we will allow its use for photo opportunities.

Here are photos of the car.

This is the “interior” of the car with its single seat. The space to the right of the motor/control box was used to stow tools.

The front view shows the retractable lift bars extended there are lift bars in the front and rear to place the car on the tracks and remove it

Here is a side view of the car.

We will tell the story of Lonnie Smith, a longtime signal maintainer who owned this car and in whose memory it was donated to the museum. We will also include our collection of railroad tools in this exhibit.

The third exhibit will be the previously announced 1900 riverfront model which will now replace the narrow gauge model railroad and will recreate the beginning of Casey Jones’s trip to the promised land. This custom built display will provide a vision of downtown Memphis in 1900.

Since we have been closed for the past year and donations have been reduced, we need your financial support now more than ever to complete these exhibits. We are also needing volunteers to assist our exhibit designers and model builders.

If you are interested in volunteering or contributing financially, please contact MRTM President Mike Fleming at or  call his direct line at (901) 461-7138.