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Illinois Railway Museum

7000 Olson Road, Union, IL 60180
(815) 923-4391
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Ranked #1 of 4 Attractions in Union
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Museums
Attraction details
Type: Museums
Mon - Fri 10:30 am - 4:00 pm
Sat - Sun 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
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111 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Rockford Illinois
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2014

I am a lifelong railfan. IRM has an extremely comprehensive collection of steam, diesel and electric railroad engines. Some equipment is kept in huge barns, while other gems on the storage tracks. The restoration shops are generally open to watch work on rolling stock and engines. IRM has a great collection of interurban cars. Also, There are many electric buses.... More 

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Crystal Lake, Illinois, United States
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
11 attraction reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2014

We visited about two years ago during a busier season. This time, while quieter, was just as charming. Only two trains were running this day, but we still filled the afternoon with lots of exploration through the barns housing everything from horse pulled carts to enormous steam giants. This weekend in particular they had trick-or-treats at the end of the... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Joliet, IL USA
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
8 attraction reviews
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2014

I guess we were both a bit disappointed after reading a number of reviews touting all the cool things to do and see here. True, there are a lot of trains, but most of them are only visible from the exterior and are in various stages of restoration (or decay, depending on how you look at it)., Unfortunately, the interiors... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Huntley, Illinois
20 reviews 20 reviews
11 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2014

This is a such a great place to visit with family. Even though we have been here several times over the years, we always enjoy seeing all the trains. My favorites are the ones where you can walk through and see how train travel has changed over the years. If you visit during the Thomas days or when they have... More 

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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
13 attraction reviews
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2014

One very reasonable entry fee gets you on everything they have running that day. Ride in a caboose or a lounge car from the railroads hay day. Lots of static displays and running street cars to see and ride. Ride and learn about the equipment you're on. Steam and Diesel. Old and also almost new equip. Remember it is a... More 

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Niagara Falls, New York
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2014

All the positive reviews are correct. I want to add a couple of nuances: We are "mobility challenged" to some extent. So we appreciated the old-time trolley car that runs around the extensive property - you can get off, visit the various storage sheds and then you can catch another trolley and move on to another amazing shed. The other... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
38 attraction reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2014

Ive heard of this place before but never visited until now. Signs are well marked so you wont get lost. Lots of locomotives, electric, streetcars, railcars, and anything that you would find on a railroad, they had a old electric streetcar from Chicago running the day of our visit and it was very nicely restored. My Great Grandpa Walsh operated... More 

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Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
7 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2014 credit card Amex Card Member Review

We were going apple picking with our grandson and children and stumbled across the museum. Our 2 year old grandson LOVES trains. He was in utter bliss. They have an amazing collection of trains. Quite enjoyable. Want to return.

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Plainfield, IL
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
8 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2014

I've heard about this museum many times in the past but only recently decided to make the trek out there to check it out. Our 2 year old is completely into trains right now so we thought he'd enjoy seeing the trains up close and personal. Well, we were completely right, he absolutely loved it and didn't want to leave!... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Chicago, IL
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
5 attraction reviews
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2014 credit card Amex Card Member Review

We went during the annual Thomas the Tank Engine event. This was our 2nd year going, and it was again wonderful. Aside from all the Thomas stuff, they have lots of trains to look at and ride - everything from a few minutes to a 45 minute ride out into the farmland. The staff is friendly, facilities are clean and... More 

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?