We made the drive (40 miles) today to Sacramento to visit the
It was number 1 on the attraction list for Sacramento on Trip Adviser and Jim had talked to someone at the park where we are staying that told us not to miss it.
We bought our tickets and made our way into the theater for an overview of the impact of the train on California's history. It was a great overview for what we were about to see. As soon as the movie was over, a tour began with a very energetic docent who led us to key parts of the museum explaining more history. It was a wonderful tour. We were then left to wander around on our own.
This place is gigantic when you think of all of the full size train cars and engines inside.
There are even cars that you can walk through. This was the mail car.
We also went through a dining car. Each table had a different set of dishes from railroad lines who each had their own pattern of dishes.
Upstairs were the toy trains and a Thomas the Train play area.
Finally, there was a section of wood carved train exhibits.
The workmanship and details were superb.
The train museum was excellent and we certainly recommend a visit.
The train museum is located in Old Sacramento which is now a State Historic Park.
Almost next door to the train museum was The Big Four Building. The Huntington Hopkins Hardware store in the middle was begun by Collis P. Huntington and Mark Hopkins. They did not realize when they began that just a few years later they would be part of the transcontinental railroad.
Business concerns throughout California relied on Huntington, Hopkins & Company Hardware for mining equipment, construction and dredging machinery, and blasting powder. Farmers knew they could order stones for milling grain and all kinds of plows through the store. Lumber companies could procure axes and adzes, cross-cut saws, and huge band saw blades. The firm also supplied typical hardware needs to a variety of consumers in Sacramento and elsewhere in the Golden State, even some in the territory that would eventually become Nevada. Its catalogs were amazingly complete for the time.
Today, you can still go inside and purchase items.
There is also an exhibit of many of the hinges and tools sold.
As we were strolling down the street, we ventured in to one of the many candy stores. It was truly a candy lover's delight. You were even invited to sample some of the candy in the baskets.
Next stop was a boat ride on the Hornblower. Luckily we had made reservations a few days before for this as they were all sold out for Father's Day.
We waited a few minutes before we could board and headed on up to the top deck.
We started our little cruise passing the Delta King, a paddlewheel steamboat that carried passengers from Sacramento to San Francisco on ten hour trips. Today, it is a restaurant.
We passed more buildings on the riverfront.
We passed the junction where the American River feeds into the Sacramento River. It was interesting that the American River is the one color (the darker blue) and the Sacramento River is another color.
On our way back we went under Tower Bridge which is a vertical lift bridge opened in 1935. It was interesting watching boats as they went through and the bridge would rise straight up in the middle instead of opening like a draw bridge.
We had a wonderful day exploring Sacramento. We were hoping to go to the capitol building, but time ran out. I guess we will have to go back so we can see it. :)