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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Salamanca Rail Museum, Salamanca, New York


Salamanca, located in the "Enchanted Mountains of Cattaragus County" promotes its historic and cultural atmosphere, and also entertainment and night life provided by area casinos. Seneca Gaming and Entertainment in Salamanca is something of a regional draw. This is the only nation that has a U.S. city within its boundaries.

A critical mass of cultural attractions appears to have emerged with the Allegany State Park, the Seneca Iroquois National Museum, the Salamanca Rail Museum, and the Salamanca Historical Society.



The 1912 depot for the Buffalo, Rochester and Pittsburgh Railway, today houses an impressive collection of railroad artifacts. The building was acquired in 1980 and was a vandalized vacant shell that had stood empty for 20 years. Provide donations, government grants, and volunteer labor helped to bring the station back. Features in the building display are either a restored original or an exact duplicate based on the original architectural plans.

A museum within the railroad station showcases artifacts from the three railroads that served the region: the Erie, the Baltimore and Ohio, and the Pennsylvania Railroads.

The Salamanca Historical Society was founded in 1995 to help preserve the city's history. They had several temporary homes before signing a lease with the City of Salamanca for the historic bank building at 125 Main St. A Small Cities Grant program from the State of New York helped to provide funds to restore the building. The Society moved into their new permanent home on May 14, 2004.



While the Salamanca Rail Museum and Salamanca Historical Society are in close proximity to one another, there does not appear to be a strong programmatic connection between the two. These two attractions are further constrained by being separated by raised railroad tracks that pedestrians or cars must pass under.


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