Vintage model trains chug around the tracks in Nacogdoches

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Vintage model trains were chugging around the tracks, honking their horns and blowing their whistles at the historic Railroad Depot in Nacogdoches.

It was all aboard at the Loblolly Railroad stationed inside the Nacogdoches Railroad Depot.
Dozens of train enthusiasts, young and old, watched as the trains whizzed through the 12 foot by 16 foot town.
Loblolly crew member, George Ellis was the train conductor today and he was excited so many people came to visit the exhibit.

Ellis said, "I personally find it exciting. I like to share the hobby. I like to talk to the folk. There's a lot of closet railroad people in the area and this is an opportunity to bring them out and talk about the hobby."

A newly added camera car that plays on a big screen TV gives on-lookers and up-close-and-personal look at what it would feel like to be riding the caboose through the display.
Ellis says, "We have 2 main lines on this railroad and the one train is a Shay Locomotive. It's similar to the train that's parked in front of the forestry school at SFA and we've got 6 log cars behind it."

Ellis controls all both the trains and all their functions like blowing the whistle, speeding the trains up and down from the touch of a button.

He says, "It's just fun. It's a family hobby. You've got from geometry to electricity. You've  got physics,  you've got chemistry and it all kind of brings it together."

Steve Stovall has a family background in railroad work and some old tools he wants to find a new home for. "I just wanted to look and see what was down here. I have a bunch of tools he gave me from the railroad and I was going to donate them." Stovall also said nobody is ever too old to play with trains.

The depot is the only surviving passenger depot on the Old Houston, East and West Railway and SFA and the Center for Regional Heritage Research keep the historic building alive.

If you missed the model train exhibit this weekend, not to worry, The Loblolly Railroad will be open and on display again next weekend:

Friday from 11 - 6, Saturday from 10 - 5 and Sunday from 1-5.
It's free and lots of fun for all ages.

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