Southern Museum of Civil War & Locomotive History
Below are some pictures I took at the Southern Museum of Civil War & Locomotive History
located in Kennesaw, Georgia.
The museum ofers three impressive collections that include:
Civil War artifacts and how railroads were the liveline of the Civil War,
the Glover Machine Works that manufactured railroad wheels and gears,
and the famous locomotive, the "General"
The Civil War artifacts include the James A. Liesendahl Civil War Collection, the George Wray and
Family Collection, and the Ralf G. Bateman Family Collection. These displays provide a glimpse
into the lives of soldiers and citizens during the Civil War.
The Glover machine Works played a significant role in industrilizing the South after the Civil War.
The museum includes a reproduction o the Glover factory, featuring the only restored
belt-driven assembly line in the U.S. It also features original machining equipment, and two
restored Glover locomotives in various stages of assembly. Below is a picture of a belt-driven
lathe in this display.
The most impressive exhibit of the museum is the Civil War vintage train locomotive and
tender named the "General." A picture of it is presented below.
The "General" was built in 1855 for the State of Georgia Western & Atlantic Railroad by the Rogers
Ketchum & Grosvenor Locomotive Works of Patterson, NJ. On April 12, 1862, James J. Andrews and
a band of Union spies stole the locomotive from under the watchful eyes of guards at Camp
McDonald while passengers and crew were eating breakfast at the Lacy Hotel. Andrews and his men
were planning to destroy the Western & Atlantic Railroad and cut the Confederate supply line at Chattanooga, Tennessee. Andrews and his men were chased 87 miles by the Confederate
Train Conductor William Fuller until Andrews and his men were captured at Ringgold, Georgia, just
south of Chattanooga, Tennessee. This chase has become known as "The Great Locomotive Chase".
Andrews, Sgt. John Scott, and some others of Andrews' men were caught. Andrews and Scott were hanged. The Union participants of The Great Locomotive Chase were the first recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor; most of them were awarded this honor posthumously.
Below are other pictures of the "General Locomotive."
The Great Locomotive Chase was made into a movie by Walt Disney entitled
"The Great Locomotive Chase" starring Fess Parker that was released in 1956.
Toy train manufacturer Lionel wanted to capitalize on the popularity of this movie and therefore released the #1862 locomotive (an O27 gauge) and the #1872 (a Super O gauge) in 1959. I have the Lionel #1872 "General" locomotive and you can see it and the associated railroad cars by clicking here.
The Southern Museum of Civil War & Locomotive History is worth going to see if you are in
the area. It is located in Kennesaw, GA (that was previously named Big Shanty). Kennesaw is
just north of Atlanta on Interstate 75.