444 Fourth Street, Greenport, NY 11944

631.477.0439

http://www.rmli.us/RMLI/Greenport_Site.html

The Railroad Museum of Long Island is housed in a former Long Island Rail Road freight house. The freight house and the former Greenport railroad station (now the East End Seaport Museum) were built in 1892 in the same Victorian style popular at that time. The massive sliding wooden doors originally installed for loading and unloading freight are still intact. Over the years the freight house also served as the parcel post service of the US Post Office, housed a Railway Express Office, and was used for storage of busses. At one time the 3.4 acre site comprising the Greenport rail yard had a four-stall engine house, a coaling area, a water tank, and many other smaller maintenance-of-way structures all of which have long since vanished. The post card photo below shows the Greenport site in its heyday. The date of the photo is unknown but it is certainly before 1927 since the four stall engine house in the right center of the photo was demolished in that year. Note the tracks extending out on the pier in the center background. The building at the lower left edge of the photo is the freight house which is the present Greenport Museum site.

The former freight house houses the Museum’s extensive collection of small artifacts, photographs and other bits of railroad history from Long Island. Also inside is an operating scale model of the Greenport dock facility and its interaction with the railroad as well as a gift shop. A grant received from Suffolk County enabled volunteers to strip the old paint off of the eaves of the building exterior and repaint them. Work is progressing as additional funding is received.
Outside the Museum building are two pieces of rolling stock, ex-LIRR wood caboose #14 and ex-LIRR Wedge Snow Plow #83, nicknamed “Jaws III”.

Also at the Greenport site is an 80 foot long turntable that was used by the Long Island Rail Road to turn steam locomotives for their trip back west. This turntable was run by compressed air, not steam as mentioned elsewhere on this site, and is the only such turntable remaining on Long Island. The compressed air to power the turntable drive motor was drawn from the locomotive being turned. Engine #39 was the last steam locomotive to head a passenger train into Greenport and was the last steam locomotive to be turned on this turntable. Future plans call for the turntable to be used to turn Engine #39 as part of our goal to run excursions between Riverhead and Greenport. The turntable was recently cleaned and painted by the local chapter of the NRHS but needs extensive structural work and refurbishing of the drive system to be used with a steam locomotive.

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