Amtrak recently launched a new website, History.Amtrak.com, dedicated to providing a view into its extensive archive and is a place to share in its rich history. The site features a collection of historic photographs, ads, route guides, timetable covers and other resources from employees that celebrates Amtrak’s more than 40 years as the nation’s intercity passenger rail provider. The public is encouraged to share their memorabilia by using the contact link on the site where direction will be provided on how to provide specific items.
“Amtrak is woven into the fabric of America, providing a vital transportation service to the nation and connecting families and communites as part of an amazing and unfolding history,” said President and CEO Joe Boardman. “We are thrilled to share our history and look forward to adding items to create a thorough, robust resource for employees, researchers and the general public.”
In addition to the archives, the site offers a guided tour through Amtrak’s history by decade and how it became America’s Railroad®. A frequently updated blog provides year-by-year highlights, a look at recently uploaded items and a recap of the Amtrak 40th Anniversary Exhibit Train’s cross-country journey in 2011 and 2012. In addition to contributed memorabilia, the site will be adding content including annual reports, Congressional testimonies and ridership and revenue figures.
The digital and physical archives have been compiled and organized with the assistance of the Special Collections Research Center at The George Washington University. “The story of Amtrak and the resurgent role of American passenger rail travel over the past 40 years is told through many stories and by many voices. GW is honored to be able to help ensure that these stories remain a vital part of the American experience,” said Steven Mandeville-Gamble, Associate University Librarian for Collections & Scholarly Communication at The George Washington University Libraries.
Furthermore, the site also links to the Amtrak store, which offers merchandise, including: Amtrak: An American Story, a 144-page commemorative book and Amtrak: The First 40 Years, an award-winning documentary DVD.