The station is your first stop; this is where you can buy your tickets, start your tour, and catch the train. Inside the station is a souvenir and book store, a snack counter, and many displays including a complete telegraph display.
The railway station was always an important gathering point for people. It was where passengers arrived and departed, mail, express and freight came and went. The telegraph facilities were an important communications link to the outside world. Stations provided living quarters and office space for the station agent, freight and express storage, and a waiting room for passengers.
The St. Albert Station was built in 1909 at Mile 5 of the Sangudo Subdivision. The original station was somewhat smaller; a freight storage addition was made in 1921. The station was stuccoed and insulated in 1937, electrified in 1953, moved to the Museum grounds in 1973 and placed on a foundation in 1982. Interior renovations were carried out from 1983 to 1986.
Built on the Canadian Northern mainline, this station became part of the Canadian National Railways, formed from 1917 - 1923. A replica of the station has been constructed at the grain elevator site in St. Albert.
Gibbons Water Tank
The Museum acquired the 1919 Gibbons water tank in 1984. It was a major accomplishment getting it trucked to the grounds because of its size, design and physical condition. It has eight sides each 13 ft. wide at the bottom, 11ft. wide at the top and 32 ft. high, plus the roof.
The tank is actually two separate structures, the exterior shell and the interior tank and support members. The exterior serves to protect the tank from the elements.
The tank was used to fill the tenders of steam locomotives with water. The ball on the rod at the top of the tank is the float which shows how much water is in the tank. The building had a stove inside to keep the water from freezing during the winter.
The tank is constructed like a wooden barrel, with wooden staves bound together with iron straps. Without a constant water supply swelling the staves, it is unlikely that the tank can be used as originally designed without lining it with plastic or fiberglass. Even then, there is some doubt that the tank would be able to withstand the pressure of 40,000 gallons of water - 400,000 pounds (nearly 182,000 kilograms)!
The exterior was repaired and repainted in 1994-95 through an Unemployment Insurance Section 25 Grant.
Edmonton South Yard Fire Hall
Built during the First World War, this former CN fire hall is representative of the smaller structures that housed manual fire fighting equipment of that era.
This particular hall was a feature of the South Yard in Edmonton. The Fire Hall was restored and repainted in 1991. The structure has been fitted out as a commissary for feeding summer work crews.
The Museum's bunkhouse came from Rosalind, Alberta in 1993. It was put on a foundation across the track from the station. The bunkhouse was completely painted inside and out, and has been fitted out as a volunteer centre.
Bunkhouses were set up so that maintenance-of-way crews would have a place to eat and sleep while away from home. This one is typical of many that sat at trackside on Canada's railways. The upper picture shows the bunkhouse in its original condition, shortly after its acquisition.
Yes, this is a railway station - technically, a passenger shelter. It stood in the hamlet of Opal, Alberta, a flag stop on the line west of Redwater, AB.
Trains only stopped at flag stops when they were flagged down. The building is located just east of the St. Albert Station. It was donated by Robert Murland, an Opal resident.
The siding at Peavey, AB, just north of Morinville AB. was the site of a National Grain Company grain elevator.
The name of the siding was probably taken from the first two initials of the owner of the elevator company, P.V. Heffelfinger. He and his brothers were part owners of National Grain.
The company was sold to Cargill, Inc. around 1965.The building was donated by the McKirdy family.
The Museum has two large shops for equipment repair and maintenance.
The east shop is named "Dunvegan Shop" in honor of the Northern Alberta Railways. It contains a carpenter shop, car repair facilities, and track for storage of railway cars while repairs are being made. Some cars are available for viewing.
The west shop was named "Calder Shop" after CN's main yard.
Calder Yard is now named Walker Yard, recognizing the long service to CN of Ross Walker who was CN's Senior Vice-President.
Calder Shop was built in the early 1980s for storage and repair of xCN6060 when it was donated by CN to the Province of Alberta in recognition of Alberta's 75th Anniversary. 6060 is now located at Stettler and operates on Alberta Prairie Steam Tours.The shop is being used for maintenance and repair of our locomotive fleet.