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McKeen Car Cuyamaca Renderings!!!


March 19, 2017 by Madison Kirkman

This Past Year has been Amazing. Tomorrow is March 20, 1 year since the McKeen Car “Cuyamaca” arrived in Ramona, however, we wanted to celebrate today, March 19 and I specifically wanted to celebrate 12:40PM, because exactly 109 years ago, the Cuyamaca arrived in San Diego for the first time, finishing it’s trip from Omaha, which at times ran at 60MPH. The car would quickly begin testing before serving on the railroad for 6 years.

One of my first goals after receiving the car was to create an accurate 3-D model of the car, one where blueprints could be made off of digital parts, but to also act as a body that I can render and apply paints to. To achieve this level of detail, I spent about 350 hours over summer and school time constructing this model. I have been keeping these renderings(images) a secret, but I feel this is the best time to share them.

We are also now a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation and we set up with GoFundMe to receive at a reduced rate, and in a way where you can use it as a tax write-off. Here is the link to the page.

We have a tinsmith who is currently reproducing the McKeen Ventilators that go on the roof, and soon we’ll be working on the “Dr. Suess” (not the professional term) Air Intakes for the car. We are also finishing up blueprints for the entire side sill of the Cuyamaca, that will be the first major part on the car that we replace, a major piece of the framework.

I hope you all have had a great year, and I really have to say thank you to everyone out there who have helped with the project, My Parents, Riley (my Brother,) my Friends; Taylor, Shae, and Bob, and I have to thank those who helped with my modeling and graphics work including Andrew Brandon, Randy Hees, and Kevin Bunker.

Thank You for Donating to the project, for none of this would be a reality if our followers had not helped out.

Thank You Again – Madison Kirkman

Jim Crow McKeen Cars


January 15, 2017 by Madison Kirkman

We remember January 15th as Martin Luther Kings birthday. Martin Luther King fought against segregation in the Jim Crow south in the 1950’s and 60’s until his tragic assassination in 1968.

The Jim Crow Laws allowed businesses and government to provide ‘separate but equal’ facilities to non-white people. These services however were often poorly maintained when for use by backs, while white amenities were better taken care of.

The Supreme Court of the United States ruled in Brown vs. the Board of Education that separate was not equal. That was 1954, and it still took time for people to accept it, that was how the black boycotts and protests, which was primarily ran by Martin Luther King, where there to change how blacks were treated.

Putting this all in perspective, there were two McKeen cars that were sold to Railroads in the South that requested that they be built with separate sections to split Whites from Blacks. The two cars were the Norfolk Southern #90 (different railroad than the current railroad) and the Southern Railway #3. Both Cars were 70′ long, and the Southern Railway Car had two sets of dropped doors. One in the back and one in the center. The only other car built like this to my knowledge is the Norte De Cuba #800.

Here are photos of both cars at the begging of their lives, both cars were unique, and neither survived to 1940.

Photo Courtesy of the Norfolk & Southern Historical Society Collection

Norfolk Southern #90

N.S.#90 Plan

Southern Railway #3 – Courtesy of Marvin Black Collection

Blueprint of Southern Railway #3 – Courtesy of Marvin Black Collection

I am Working on the Website Again


November 19, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

I know I haven’t update much of the website in the past months, with how busy an actual McKeen Car as kept me, it’s been difficult balancing Sleep, School, Work, 3-D Drawings, Homework, running such Facebook Pages as the McKeen Group, “Ahead of the Torch,” and a few other railroad related related groups. I do a little of each most everyday, but there’s only 24 hours. I am going to try to really really update my website, and I’ve started with the Maricopa and Phoenix Railroad, and the Northern Pacific Railroad Pages. I am also going to work on other pages as I really need to update some of them… Not that history is changing, but that I’m acquiring more and more information that I haven’t had time to add to the website. Lastly I want to say, thank you all for your support in my project, we are now a 501c3 Non Profit under the eyes of the IRS, and we are finishing up the process with the State of California. Again, thank you everyone for you’re help, it really does mean a lot when someone tells me that received most of their information from my website, and that it was a great help in their conquest for knowledge on even the smallest of railroads.

-Madison Kirkman

Santa Fe M-101 Postcard


June 8, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

Erie McKeen Car Postcard


June 5, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

McKeen Car “Cuyamaca” in Ship Creek, Anchorage, Alaska


May 31, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

Pennsylvania Railroad McKeen Car #4701


May 25, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

We Made it Into the San Diego Union Tribune


May 21, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

S.O.H.O. Award


May 20, 2016 by Madison Kirkman

McKeen Motor Cars and Switcher engine on the Minneapolis & Northern Railroad


May 5, 2016 by Madison Kirkman