Historic Dining Car in Tacoma needs new home

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From the Tacoma News Tribune:

Northern Pacific Dining Car No. 1663 is wrapped in gray tarps and standing next to Tacoma Rail tracks on the Tideflats. The 80-foot-long car is the sole survivor of a 15-car fleet built around 1910 by the Barney and Smith Car Co. of Dayton, Ohio.

It is the only piece of historic passenger-rail rolling stock in a town that was built by and for the Northern Pacific. Yet it is in danger of being lost to Tacoma unless Burns can finally get some help from those who share his hopes of seeing it restored and displayed. Tacoma Rail has told him they need the right of way he is leasing to allow the utility to improve tracks for an industrial customer.

That leaves him three weeks to find a new location, preferably indoors, to allow him to keep working on restoring the car. He’d love to attract some help to raise the money to hire experts and craftsmen to complete the work. That’s all part of his dream of having the restored car displayed somewhere in Tacoma.

Full Story: http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/02/16/3050440/piece-of-tacoma-rail-history-could.html


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The outlook continues to be fairly good. Construction on the project was started recently, as planned, but the car has about 3 weeks or so to get moved. The owner was on site today, doing some prep work for the move. He gave me a tour of the car, and I was impressed. It has some significant water damage, but the interior is amazing and enough remains that the restoration work will have plenty of solid historical evidence to work from.

He has, amazingly, been offered permanent indoor storage for the car at the LeMay collection at Marymount (that's the original facility which is near Spanaway, not the shiny new car museum at the Tacoma Dome). The main obstacle, no surprise here, is the cost of the move and cranes etc.

Should that fail, he also has a viable backup plan in consideration, though there would, as always be lots of details to be worked out before it's a go. It's a good option too.

Hopefully things will continue in a positive direction.

More info: http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/02/27/3069238/good-news-on-railroad-history.html


A 1910 NP Dining car that was moved from Easton WA, to Tacoma a few years for restoration is under the gun to be moved.

The LeMay Family Collection has offered a permanent home for storage and restoration. The owner of the car needs to raise 17k by end of the month to get the car to this new location.

Below is the plea for help through Kickstarter to fund the transportation costs. The Kickstarter site has a lot of good information.

Help if you can!


Hi Everyone,

We are trying to save a piece of Tacoma history so please spread the word and let’s make this happen!

The Kickstarter campaign that Dave Burns started to save Tacoma Dining Car! Check it out:


We have just a few days to make this happen!

Trudy Cofchin

LeMay Family Collection Foundation

Marymount Event Center

Office: 253.272.2336


Celebrate the Spirit of Collecting


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The car is being loaded out today (Mon 4/21/14) and shipped off to its new home at the LeMay Collection at Marymount.



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