New Jersey Museum of Transportation
The New Jersey Museum of Transportation is a museum dedicated to the collection, preservation, and operation of historic railroad equipment. The organization runs excursion trains on a 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge tourist railroad named the Pine Creek Railroad. The museum is independently operated along with the Allaire Village and is located in Allaire State Park in New Jersey.
The museum runs Santa Special trains on the weekends in December.
The origins of the New Jersey Museum of Transportation began with the purchase of a Baldwin 0-4-0T engine from the Raritan River Sand Company in 1952 by a pair of railroad enthusiasts. This first engine was named the Pine Creek No. 1 and was eventually sold to the Walt Disney company, where it was overhauled and renamed the #4 Ernest S. Marsh. The engine is still in use today at the California theme park.
Initially a 2.5-acre plot of land on Route 9 in Marlboro was purchased where the railroad was run as a tourist attraction, but in 1952 when the organization was facing large property tax increases the not-for-profit Pine Creek Railroad Division of the New Jersey Museum of Transportation was formed and the operations were moved to its present day location in Allaire State Park.
While the Pine Creek railroad loop runs adjacent to the abandoned Freehold and Jamesburg Agricultural Railroad that skirts the park (now known as the Edgar Felix Bikeway), it was never part of that rail line right-of-way.
In 1985, two engines were found in 90 feet of water 5 miles off the coast of Long Branch. These engines were found sitting side by side and in an upright position. The origins of these engines remained a mystery until 2004 when a team of diving and railroad enthusiasts working along with the a History Channel production team investigated the engines.
On September 25, 2004 the New Jersey Museum of Transportation was granted custody of the two engines by the US District Judge Joseph Irenas, the museum hopes one day to raise the relics for display and interpretation at the museum.
- New Jersey Museum of Transportation web site, retrieved December 19, 2011
- John Shiffman (September 19, 2004), Old trains discovered of NJ coast are called 'real archeological find', Philadelphia Inquirer