Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Detroit, Toledo, & Milwaukee Roundhouse

In June of 2000, the Detroit, Toledo, & Milwaukee Roundhouse officially opened.
Originally located in Marshall, Michigan, the structure is the only working educational roundhouse in the midwest region, and one of only seven working roundhouses in the United States.

The original DT&M Roundhouse was built in 1884 and was demolished in 1989. The reconstructed roundhouse has been restored to look as it did in 1920 and includes many of the structural elements of the original. Visitors can watch from above as skilled mechanics service and repair the locomotives using 19th and early 20th century equipment and tools.

That being said, this roundhouse is also the primary facility for the inspection, care, repair, and storage of a number of historic locomotives. The trains at the Village, on an average, require one day of service for every day of operation.

Notice the caboose restoration taking place

In the old days, virtually all of the roundhouse workers were male and they would learn their skills through on the job training.
Not all roundhouses were round. Smaller roundhouses, like the DT&M, were built in a semi-circular pattern around a turntable. The DT&M Roundhouse is built around the Pere Marquette Railroad Turntable

One of the most unique features about the inside of this roundhouse is the ability for the visitor to have the opportunity to actually enter the inspection pit where one can stand beneath a fifty ton locomotive.
Ever stand underneath a fifty ton locomotive?

The "Railroad Junction" - as it's called in Greenfield Village - is now complete by way of the turntable, the Steam Locomotive Train Rides, the Smiths Creek Depot, and now the roundhouse.



chad said...


My name is CHad Lueken and I own the company that built the doors for the round house I think back in 2000. I was wondering if I can get some pictures to put on my website.


chad said...

My company built the doors to the roundhouse back in 2000 (I think). Do you think I could get some pictures of the doors that I could post on my website.


Historical Ken said...

The Village is closed for the season but will be re-opening later this month.
Do you mean the large front entrance doors for the trains? I will be happy to take some photos for you. If you don't hear from me by the first of May, please send me a reminder.