Loco for locomotives: Inyo highlights museum offerings

Lee Hobo guides the Inyo Locomotive around the Nevada State Railroad Museum Saturday afternoon.

Lee Hobo guides the Inyo Locomotive around the Nevada State Railroad Museum Saturday afternoon.

Horn whistling, the 128-year-old black steel hulk of the Inyo locomotive chugged around the Nevada State Railroad Museum on Saturday, thrilling visitors from Poughkeepsie, New York.

"I think it's fantastic," said Ken Malley with a grin. "They have really polished her up."

He and his friend, Bill Brunsvold, snapping pictures in the sunshine, read about the event on the museum's Web site.

The Inyo only gets out on the track once a year --Ethe weekend of Independence Day, said museum volunteer Chuck Sheldon. Saturday the old locomotive -- built in 1875 -- was part of a "parade of engines" including the No. 25, a Virginia & Truckee locomotive built in 1905, and the No. 8, built in 1888.

There is no brake on the wood-burning Inyo, said Sheldon, who has more than 2,500 volunteer hours.

"That's why they have a brakeman on the tender."

Joining the fun Saturday was "Lone Pine Lawman" Ron McKimmy. Wearing a big white cowboy hat with a revolver on his hip, Lone Pine and Carson Kate were fixing to rob the train. Members of the Friends of the Nevada State Railroad Museum, the pair stages robberies, deputizes visitors and even teaches a little gun safety.

"Nobody gets hurt, but sometimes we rope 'em," he said.

They distribute "Carson City Deputy" badges from the Visitors Bureau with the number 1-800-NEVADA-1 on them.

"On a weekend like this we'll probably deputize 1,000 or 1,500 kids and families," McKimmy said.

He also tells the story of a real train robbery which took place 10 minutes outside out Carson in 1897.

"They took $7,000 of mine payroll for the Bonanza Mine using a shotgun," he said.

Re-enacting in period clothing is fun, said Barbara Reed, who plays Carson Kate.

"And the people just absolutely love it."

Autumn and Nicole Stephens were no exception Saturday.

"It really surprised me," said Autumn, 7.

The two came out from Lawrenceville, Ga., with their family.

"They had big grins during the shootout," said their grandfather, Don Stephens. "This is their big Western trip."

So far they've seen the Oregon Trail in Nebraska, Wyoming's Cody Stampede Rodeo, Bonneville Salt Flats, black bear, buffalo and Elk.

"And we're going to San Canfrisco!" said Nicole, 9.


What: Nevada State Railroad Museum

Inyo steam up

10-11 a.m. today

Plus steam train rides from 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

Where: 2180 S. Carson St.

Call: 687-6953.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment