Colorado Railroad Workers, 1970 to Today
The third installation in our Colorado Railroad Workers series, this exhibit examines what it is like to work for the railroad today.
There have been many changes in railroading throughout the previous fifty years, not the least of which includes integrating computers, the internet, and women into the workforce. Equipment has also changed, and Class 1 railroad companies now focus primarily on long corridor freight shipments instead of intercity passenger travel.
Despite these changes, railroading remains a viable career opportunity. Want to be an engineer when you grow up? Well you still can! The average railroad wage in Colorado (including benefits) is $112,000, (which is higher than the national average), and railroading remains one of the highest paid jobs available to individuals without a college degree. Over 3,000 people are currently employed in Colorado by the Class 1 railroads BNSF or Union Pacific. Colorado is also home to the Transportation Technology Center, a research and testing facility in Pueblo that develops new railroad technology.
Visit Railroading Now to learn more about working for the railroad. Climb into our model Ski Train diesel locomotive, discover who is working for railroad right now, read about Union Pacific’s Bailey Yard, the largest Class 1 rail yard in the world, and much more!
Ludlow Centennial Remembrance
Tensions between coal companies and miners had been building for almost a decade before the incident at Ludlow. Nineteenth-century coal miners faced constant risk of explosion, suffocation, and collapsing mine walls, and Colorado mining companies were notorious for ignoring national safety laws. Between 1884 and 1912, more than 1,700 miners died in Colorado mining accidents, with a state mining death rate 2 ½ times higher than the national rate.
This exhibit has been installed as part of a statewide collaboration to remember Ludlow, and because coal mining and railroading have always been closely tied together in the state of Colorado. The Colorado Fuel & Iron Company was founded in part by General William Jackson Palmer, (the same businessman who founded a little railroad known as the Denver & Rio Grande). One hundred years later, Colorado remains a major freight corridor for coal trains and mining labor issues are still a frequent topic of conversation around the United States.
The American Hobo
From bindlestiffs to Depression-Era hobos, turn-of-the-century socialists to the hobo-punks of today, this exhibit covers 140 years of hobo history. While many of us may once again consider hobos as part of our past, hobos are in fact still riding the rails today. You are cordially invited to discover the long and vibrant story of hobos at our new exhibit which includes photos, personal stories, and hobo symbols and slang. Learn more about the fascinating lives of hobos.
We hope you take a moment to stop by and see these wonderful new exhibits!