Frederick resident Jacob Engelbrecht recorded local, national and international events in numerous journals from 1819 until his death in 1878. Some historical background is available from Engelbrecht’s Diary, which states, “Thursday 29, 1869. Frederick and Pennsylvania Railroad broke ground for the Frederick and Pennsylvania line near Woodsboro.” With the arrival of the Frederick and Pennsylvania Railroad in 1872 new prosperity was brought to the area, hauling farmers’ supplies in and farm produce out. With this new prosperity, the town of Walkersville became incorporated in 1892. By the early 20th century the area grew into an industrial center that included a cannery, an ice factory, a bakery and a clothing factory.
The brick building that houses the museum was part of the Glade Valley Milling Co. property. This building was the Ice Plant and had freezer lockers for people to store their food. They also produced ice that was delivered around town. When the Frederick and Pennsylvania Railroad cut back on their freight operations, it brought about the demise of this busy industrial center. The brick building located down the lane from the Museum was the old Cannery. More about this on the History page.
Visitors to our museum will be able to view artifacts and documents of the PRR Frederick Secondary on loan from long time Track Foreman Leslie Lind. Also on display are a 1903 locomotive demonstrator and the front of a Baldwin Switcher locomotive from the 1940’s and the very unusual looking velocipede, which was built in the late 1800’s.
Visitors will be treated to many educational displays and an operating model railroad (HO scale) known as the “Monocacy Valley Railroad.” George Wireman, who for many years was the Senior Conductor of the Walkersville Southern Railroad, built the layout. If you look closely, you will notice that one of the trains running on the layout is an authentic model of the WSRR excursion train.
For our younger visitors, there is the Children’s Corner, featuring a wooden train shelf layout where they can get hands-on railroading time making up and running Thomas the Tank Engine and other trains over the rails. Children can also read one of our many train books, color or play a round of ‘Tic Track Toe’.
We are continually adding artifacts and displays to our museum, and feature some of our more interesting projects on our Projects page.