The Operating Department will hold a class for new trainmen on April 10-11 and May 1-2. The class will run from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM each day with a one-hour break for lunch. Attendance at all four days is mandatory to complete the class. The class is held at Mid-Continent and is limited to 6 people, we will create a waiting list for anyone requesting to join the class after the 6th person signs up. The class consists of both classroom and hands-on sessions, with the first weekend being mainly held in the classroom. You must be a member in good standing to be eligible to attend the class, you must be able to lift 50 lbs, and you must be at least 18 years of age. Be aware that you will be required to work outside in all types of weather. The cost to attend the class is free, but you will need to equip yourself with the proper clothing/uniform and will need to buy a rule book. If, after completing your student trips, you qualify as a brakeman you will also have to provide a deposit for the keys you will be issued. All requirements for the class will be explained in the invitation email. Ongoing requirements of staying in the Operating Department will be explained during the class.
We try to hold a class for new trainmen once each year in the spring. If you are considering joining the operating department, you must attend this class to become a trainman. If you left the department without taking any kind of approved leave (leave applies only to a small number of people), you also must take this class if you wish to return and will start as a trainman. No credit will be given for previous service or positions held.
Due to the cancellation of last year’s class, applicants from 2020 have first choice this year, but if you would like more information on the program or would like to be added to a waitlist in the event a seat is available, please send an email or call the MCRM office at (608) 522-4261 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are selected to attend this year’s class: The first weekend will be entirely indoors at the North Freedom Town Hall. The second weekend in the yard will be mostly outside and require a few specific items (Steel-toe Boots, Gloves/Leather Mittens) and will be discussed in a follow-up email and at the first class. Social distancing guidelines will be followed and masks/face coverings will be required at all times indoors and on museum property. You will be required to obtain a Consolidated Code of Operating Rules, Edition of 1980, which you can purchase from the museum for $10. The museum has limited quantities and you are free to acquire your own copy of a Consolidated Code of Operating Rules, Edition of 1980 outside the museum (ebay or other sellers), but it is a REQUIRED item to have on your person while on duty. As well, once you qualify, you will need to pay $5 for a switch and “O” key. This is a one-time deposit fee and you will be given a receipt. You will be expected to return the keys should you no longer remain an active volunteer in operations, at which time your deposit fee will also be returned.
ALL details subject to change. We welcome any suggestions or other input. If you are still interested in the Trainman class, but not at this time, please let us know so we can keep you on a list for future classes. We also recommend following our Facebook page and reading the Steamer newsletters.
Christopher E Lorr
Assistant Training Officer
Mid-Continent Railway Museum