Saturday Tours Highlight Shreveport’s Hidden Railroad History
Shreveport has a rich railroad history and tomorrow, locals will get a chance to take a train ride into Downtown’s Railroad Past.
Downtown Development Authority Executive Director Liz Swaine it all began in the early- to mid-1900′s, when downtown Shreveport was home to three passenger train terminals. Most cities our size were home to only one, if they were lucky. There was also a freight terminal, an “A” frame bridge that’s one of only two in the country, and so many hotels and boarding houses built for train passengers, you couldn’t throw a conductor’s cap without hitting one.
But Swaine tells KEEL News our railroad industry is just as important today as it was way back when. “There are a lot of societies and a lot of folks who really enjoy learning about the railroads and partipating in events that happen all over the country,” Swaine says. “It just so happens that Saturday is National Train Day all around the country, so it was just sort of a lagniappe that that was the day that we chose for this hidden history tour.” May is also Historic Preservation Month, another convenient coincidence.
Tours will start at noon at artspace, and will run every quarter-hour through the afternoon. If you haven’t made your reservation yet, you need to hurry…because these will fill up fast. These are being done on a first-come, first-served basis. Tickets are $5 each.
But that’s not all! At 3:30 that afternoon, local dignitaries will gather to cut the ribbon on Shreveport’s Railroad Museum. It’s rumored that someone looking like Arlo Guthrie might be there, too…you never know! The museum is on the grounds of the Waterworks Museum on North Market Street.
What kind of neat things will you be able to see there? “It’s a lifetime collection of a number of people in the Shreveport area who have worked with the railroads, or just train officionados, and all kinds of cool, old things,” Swaine says. Plus, there will be vendors, stories, live music, food — and trains both large and small.
If you need more details, or to reserve your spot, visit the Downtown Development Authority’s website, or call Swaine’s office 222-7403.
Listen to more with Liz Swaine, in our KEEL Morning News Friday Fun Feature, HERE: