The Bienes Museum  of the Modern Book Presents "The Great Days of Rail Travel on the Florida East Coast" Exhibit and Program Series
- Exhibit and related events celebrate Broward County Libraries Division's "Viva Florida 500" finale -

Vintage train poster.

"The Great Days of Rail Travel on the Florida East Coast" will be on display at Main Library  through March 31, 2014.

DATE: November 7, 2013
MEDIA CONTACT: Catherine McElrath
Libraries Division
PHONE: 954-357-7402

BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. - Explore The Great Days of Rail Travel on the Florida East Coast  at an exhibition and program series highlighting the history of passenger train service by the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC). The exhibit and programs will be held at the 
Broward County Libraries Bienes Museum of the Modern Book, located on the sixth floor of the Main Library, 100 S. Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301.

The Great Days of Rail Travel exhibit  will be on display until March 31, 2014.  Visitors can take a journey that began in 1885,  when Henry M. Flagler purchased the predecessor of today's FEC. Images, brochures, booklets and other memorabilia from the golden days of rail passenger service bring the past alive and showcase what is referred to today as "America's most exciting railroad." Flagler, a developer who masterminded the growth of Florida's East Coast, also launched the railroad which bears that name. A renowned figure in state history, Flagler has numerous streets, schools, public facilities, a city and a Florida county named after him. 

The exhibition, which is drawn from the Myrna and Seth Bramson Florida East Coast Railway Archive, heralds the glories of train travel on the FEC. Model trains are from the collections of Tom Byrne, Jonathan Nelson and the Florida Citrus Model Train Society. Artifacts and vintage photographs detail the comfort, luxury and amenities of FEC's passenger train service including fine dining, lounge and bar cars and, during winter seasons, recreation cars on the FEC's famed passenger train, The Florida Special.

The Great Days of Rail Travel on the Florida East Coast is presented by the Bienes Museum of the Modern Book and Florida East Coast Railway Company Historian, Professor Seth H. Bramson. Special programs and events celebrating this exhibit include:  

  • January 27, 2014, 1 to 2 p.m. - Train Safety for Everyone. Presented by Dr. Ken Sargeant of Operation Lifesaver, Main Library, Bienes Museum.
  • February 24, 2014, 3 to 4 p.m. - Get the Most with Your Toast! Dine on the Florida East Coast! An excursion into the Flagler System's gracious on-board dining and beverage services from 1896 through 1968. Presented by historian and avid train enthusiast Jonathan Nelson. Main Library, Bienes Museum.
  • March 10, 2014, 3 to 4 p.m. - Extra Fare! Fabulous Florida Streamliners and "Limited's" of the 1950s. A look at some of the most beautiful trains in the world. Presented by historian and avid train enthusiast Jonathan Nelson, Main Library, Bienes Museum.
  • March 18, 2014, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. - Dreamers and Schemers - The Balancing Act: Entrepreneurialism, Tourism and Preservation. Exploration of issues concerning Florida's industry and tourism and the environment. Includes theatrical presentations about Henry Morrison Flagler, Napoleon Bonaparte Broward and Marjory Stoneman Douglas.  Presented by the Florida Humanities Council, Main Library/Auditorium.
  • March 24, 2014, 2 to 3 p.m. - All Aboard Florida: The Future of Train Travel in Florida. An executive from All Aboard Florida will present updates and an overview of a future express passenger train between Central and South Florida, Main Library, Bienes Museum.

The exhibition and all events are free and open to the public. No reservation/registration is required.   

For more information on the exhibit, opening reception or special programs related to The Great Days of Rail Travel on the Florida East Coast, please contact Lillian Perricone, 954-357-8243,

The award-winning Broward County Libraries Division, founded in 1974, is the ninth largest library system in the nation by population served and one of the busiest, with more than 9 million walk-in customers visiting its 40 locations annually. The library has more than 3.4 million items and 2,000 computers for public use, and offers hundreds of events and programs to meet the needs of Broward County's diverse community. Broward County Libraries Division continues its strong emphasis on literacy, after-school programs and electronic access. In addition to our comprehensive Web site,, which provides information about library activities, links to online catalogs, reference information and databases, customers can visit BCL WoW - Broward County Library Without Walls – for free eBooks, music, audiobooks, apps and more. Customers may also follow Libraries on Facebook and Twitter. Libraries Division also administers the services, programs, collections and exhibits of the Broward County Historical Commission.


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