Historic cattle car will be restored

Mike Erwin |
The cattle-hauler/stock car owned by the Osage County Historical Society will be moved to Bartlesville later this spring. It is to be restored to like-new condition and added to the train exhibit next to the Bartlesville Visitor’s Center — which is located in the former Santa Fe Rail Depot.

Officials of the Osage County Historical Society have agreed to loan one of its two Santa Fe Railway cars to a group of area train enthusiasts, who will restore the the cattle car as part of its Bartlesville Railroad Exhibit.

The wooden cattle hauler (officially called a stock car) took cattle from Osage County ranches into Kansas before being retired decades ago. Since being donated to the historical society by the railway, the car has sat in a park adjacent the museum for decades.

Friends of 940, the area rail enthusiasts, will restore the car to its original condition — probably at the train exhibit next to the Bartlesville Downtown Depot/Visitor Center, 201 S. Keeler Ave. The Friends also will help the historical society repair some broken windows on the OCHS’s combination passenger/freight/mail car that sits just north of the local museum.

The Friends’ group’s previous projects, which are all on display at the Bartlesville center, include the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe Railway No. 940 locomotive, which was restored to its 1948 as-built apperance after being hauled from a nearby park. Also restored was a 1914 “Flying A” oil tank car and an AT&SF Caboose.

Museum officials said local residents will be able to see the restored cattle car at the Bartlesville exhibit, adding that the historical society will still be its owner.