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Tracked Down

An unlikely railroad museum in a seafaring town

capePhoto: Nicole Pasquale


ounded by a retired-to-Chatham executive of the New York Central System, the Chatham Railroad Museum seems an anachronism in this coastal town. Housed in the impeccably restored 1887 station of the Chatham Railroad Company, the museum has as its centerpiece a standard-issue New York Central caboose built in 1900 and sitting at the platform as if awaiting an engine. Audio speakers make the caboose sound if it’s moving down the tracks; inside, the sound of telegraph keys comes from the exhibit of original telegraph equipment, lanterns, charts, train models, relics of railroading dating to the first commercial train in America in 1826, and a diorama showing what the Chatham railyard looked like around 1915. It’s a fun, free, and unexpected thing to do when you’re tired of the beach.



The Cape Cod Central Railroad offers dinner and sightseeing train rides around Cape Cod. One of its co-owners is named John Kennedy, and he grew up in Hyannisport.