Is there anything worth seeing in Richmond, Virginia? It is just the capital of the state of Virginia. All that is there is the state government and nothing else. It is just a place you pass through on Interstate 95. No travel writers write about Richmond which usually means that it is not worth your time. If this is what you think that the city of Richmond is, you should take a little time to think of this city other than the home of the state government. Those who have been here know that it is a city with lots of history. It was the capital of the Confederacy during the American Civil War. The White House of the Confederacy where Jefferson Davis resided from is open for visitors as well as numerous other sites.
As much as the city is a haven for American history, it is also a haven for railfans. With railroads passing through the city and the famous ‘Triple Bridge’, the city has also preserved a few of its station stations to include the Main Street Station which is served by Amtrak plus the old Broad Street Station. Then you have the old Hull Street Depot which rests across the James River from the downtown area. What is special about the Hull Street Station? It is the home of the Richmond Railroad Museum.
Since the early days of the railroad Richmond was a hub being served by many railroads. For this reason, the Confederates made this city their capital during the American Civil War. Through the years, train stations were built. The Southern Railway built the Mill Street station in downtown Richmond in 1900. The station had a short life as it was demolished in 1914. (Mill Street is now Canal Street.) The Hull Street station was built a year later across the river. The station was damaged by floods a few times (until the flood wall was built). In February of 1957, the station saw the last passenger train leave. The station was dormant for many years as ownership was transferred from the Southern Railway to the Old Dominion Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society who refurbished the building, and it became the home of the Richmond Railroad Museum in 2011.
Today, the Richmond Railroad Museum has a few box cars, a baggage car, cabooses, a locomotive and a signal outside. Inside you will see the old ticket office in its original setting. The freight room has many artifacts on display to include old schedules, models of the other stations in Richmond, plus a speeder car. There is also a HO model train display by the Old Dominion Chapter Model Railroad Club which depicts the railroads of Virginia. If you need something to remember your visit, there is also a gift shop.
The Richmond Railroad Museum is a National Historic Landmark. It is located inside the old Hull Street Station at 102 Hull Street in Richmond, Virginia just across the James River from downtown Richmond. It is open on Saturdays from 11:00am to 4:00pm and Sunday from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. Admission is $10.00 for adults, $8.00 for seniors, $5.00 for children six to thirteen and free for children five and under. Parking is available on site at the museum and on the street if the museum lot is full. Go to http://richmondrailroadmuseum.org/ for directions, for events and to read more into the history of this station station.
The next time you are approaching Richmond, Virginia, do not think of it as another pass-through city. Think of it as a great place to stop and see. While here, made your way to the Richmond Railroad Museum.