Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum

Roundhouse with equipment ready for a night shoot. Photo copyright Andrew Fisher

Next Event:

Membership Banquet

Jan. 20 13th, 2019, Speaker Tom Chase on the East Thompson train wreck.

Amherst Train Show,

Jan 26th and 27th 2019


See the events page for special museum events during the off season.

Trains, Toys and Trees at the Mill Museum started Dec 8th, continues thru Jan. 6th 2019

Successful Railroad Day

The Museum is

Closed for the Season

Please come see us next year

See the Events at left or

on Special Events page.

May  - October    

Saturdays  10:00AM – 4:00PM     

Sundays  12:00PM – 4:00PM

Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum - Entrance at 55 Bridge St. – Willimantic, CT, 

proceed down the gravel road.

Home About the Museum Hours and Directions Special Events Picture Gallery Equipment and Buildings
Membership Info NRHS & CT CT  Eastern Chapter

Trains, Toys and Trees

Our annual holiday event of operating toy trains, toys from years past and holiday decorations will open on Dec. 8th and run through the first weekend in January at The Mill Museum.

SANTA is coming to Trains, Toys and Trees! Take photos with Santa for free (with regular admission)! Dec. 15th 2018, 11:00-3:00.

To whet your appetite, here is a video of last years display. Click the image below.

Volunteers still needed for all days. Even an hour helps! Call Pieter (203-645-9512) or Mark.

Annual Banquet

Coming Jan. 13th, 2019.

Speaker: Ton Chase on the East Thompson Train Wreck

The Great East Thompson Four-Train Wreck of 1891 is still renowned in local history.  Not many wrecks have involved so many trains. Early on the dark, cold, foggy morning of December 4, 1891, the dispatcher in Putnam, Connecticut put the Boston Freight on the westbound main line, so that the eastbound Long Island and Eastern States Express could pass without delay.  In East Thompson, the Boston Freight collided with the Southbridge Local, spewing wreckage all over the two main lines. The Express collided with the wreckage. It was being closely followed by the Long Island Boat Train, which ran into the rear Pullman car of the Express. Wreckage everywhere!

While a lot of the facts are indisputable, there are still areas where we are looking for definitive answers.  Tom will tell the story of the wreck, show all the pictures we have, mention areas of controversy, and point to directions for future research.

Tom Chase grew up in Newton Centre, Massachusetts, near the Highland Branch of the Boston & Albany, which he regularly rode during his early years.  One of his favorite activities was going over to the B & A mainline in Newton and watching whatever was going through, including the last steam in 1951.  In 1958 he boarded the New England States at Worcester Union Station bound for Elyria, Ohio and four years at Oberlin College.  He majored in conservation of art, did graduate work at New York University's Institute of Fine Art, and had a distinguished career in conservation and restoration of Oriental Art at the Smithsonian Institution's Freer Gallery.  Since retirement to Woodstock, Connecticut he has gone back to trains, and is now a Director of the Massachusetts Bay Railroad Enthusiasts, a member of many railfan organizations, and Curator of the Ramsdell Transportation Collection of the Thompson (CT) Historical Society.

2018 Night Photo Shoot

This popular event sold out early, so be sure to sign up when it is announced for the 2019 event.

The following photos are iPhone snap shots to show the setup with illumination.

These are NOT the caliber of photos the photographers attending got with their higher quality equipment and the professional grade lighting provided.


Our biggest event of the year. Food, music fun and TRAINS for the whole family, has come and gone.

To see it again, or see what you missed, click the picture below to check out the video.

CERM roundhouse with visitors

Newest gift shop item - mugs!

CERM Coffee mugs.

Two designs, get yours at the Gift Shop this weekend!

You can now support the museum with your Amazon purchases through Amazon Smile

On May 24th Jean Lambert accepted the Windham Chamber of Commerce 

"Windham Arts Creative Business Award" on behalf of the Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum

at the Chamber of Commerce dinner.

Bill Dougal photo

Pictures of Opening Day

First train of Season

New Ride-on-Train

Parts of a donation of materials

Another part of the donation - Amoskeag Manufacturing

VERY Limited - only 3 left, at the Mill Museum gift shop.

The Calendar is back! With 13 Color and B+W photos.

$15 each plus postage.

New Video! A Ride on the Air Line.

Join me on the Narragansett Pier RR Fairmont Speeder for a ride over the old NY&NE/NYNH&H Air Line roadbed at the museum.

Check it out!

On Sept. 30th 2017 we hosted the Central Vermont Railway Historical Society as part of their annual convention.

Thanks to all who came for a visit.


See the last door going on the Roundhouse, and the final color coat on the CV 4052 caboose!

Thanks to all our guests who made -

Railroad Day, September 2nd, 2017 a great success!


Also thanks to all the volunteers, performers, vendors and displays who made the event special.


Attention All Connecticut Libraries

The Connecticut Eastern Railroad Museum is participating in a Museum Pass Program. If interested please contact Robert A. LaMay at

Museum Passes are available at $100 each and admit 2 adults and 2 children (12 and under are Free)  free of charge. For more information please visit or "like" us on Facebook - Eastern-Railroad-Museum-122662274431468/

Visitors: Check with your local libary and ask them about the Museum Pass Program. 

The Dec 2017 Issue of the Ghost Train Journal is now available online! Railroad Travel, Hobby & Industry

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