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<p>Union Pacific Railroad began its final 150TH anniversary celebration as part of the Pacific Northwest segment of the UP 150 Express tour today at historic Union Station in Portland. The two-day celebration in Portland is the last of a series of events in Oregon, Washington and Idaho commemorating 150 years since President Abraham Lincoln created Union Pacific by signing the Pacific Railway Act. Three immaculate Streamliner locomotives brought the UP 150 Express to Portland pulling a recently unveiled baggage car that has been converted into a rolling museum that tells Union Pacific's 150-year history using art, graphics and the latest in touch-screen technology. </p>
Just got back from seeing the train in Portland.
The day didn't start off great because a section of I-5 was totally closed, which stopped traffic well before you got across the river, so we had to take MLK all the way in. Getting out of town was almost as bad.
The UP roped off both ends so close you couldn't get a good 3/4 view of either end at all. I'd come down mostly to see 951, which of course was used on the head end of the "Preamble Express" in the 70s.
Generally, I was very disappointed with the one display car. It was just some graphics that looked like pages from a book and 2-3 shallow display cases. Other than the receiver of a Henry rifle used by the UP and a cross section of the original 1862 rail from Ogden, there was literally nothing to see. The Amtrak 40th anniversary train looked like the Smithsonian in comparison to this. They also left their sales car behind, so no UP swag could be obtained. If wasn't so keen on seeing 951, I would have thought to myself, "I drove all the way down here for this?"
At least I saw their older obs car I'd never seen before and finally caught the King Tut Talgo unit being serviced.
Thanks for the pix. Yes, getting around PDX on Saturday way was "highway hell". From your report, I am glad I didnt try and fight the traffic to get to the exhibit. For as rich a history as the UP has...you'd think they'd pull out all the stops for their 150th Anniv. A real shame the reality didn't live up to the hype.
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