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Union Pacific Railroad Museum

Union Pacific Railroad Museum is situated only a few steps off the lobby on the first floor of Union Pacific Railroad's 12-story headquarters building in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. Within easy reach of all visitors to the city, it is a good place to take a trip on the rails of history in the nation. The artifacts here provide visitors with easy access to the documentary history of the building of Union Pacific lines through the untamed west. Among its precious collections is the display honoring President Abraham Lincoln who, in 1862, signed into law, a bill creating the Union Pacific Railroad and authorizing that company to build what was to be the nation's first transcontinental railroad and telegraph line. The museum got its start quite modestly in 1921, when it was discovered that part of the Lincoln car service had been gathering dust in a vault. Thousands of railroaders added historic items to the collection over the years. With this huge army of collectors, the displays grew rapidly and the office was overcrowded. In 1939, the museum was moved to its present location. Exhibits also include several miniature locomotives and an unusual collection of locomotive pictures taken when steam engines were the undisputed champions of railroad power. Film and video shows also take visitors through nearly 150 years of growth to the current train system. Its library, which was started in one huge bookcase, has now grown to fill an entire room.