Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bechtel Museum -- September 18, 2012

At lunchtime I went to the Bechtel Museum, a railroad car in the plaza behind the company's headquarters.   The Bechtel family lived in a railroad car, the WaaTeeKaa, at remote job sites in the 1920s. This car, originally from the Chicago, Saint Paul, Minneapolis and Omaha, was restored to externally resemble the WaaTeeKaa as a gift to Steve Bechtel, Senior and his wife Laura in 1988. The exhibits are arranged along one side of the car, with partitions between the sections. The exhibits are mostly photos with captions describing the company's founding in 1898 and the many projects which it has handled, including Hoover Dam, the Bay Bridge, and BART. Each section contains a few objects, like old hard hats or models of pioneering motorized equipment.

A guard sat at the end of the car, by the observation platform.  I asked him if the museum got many visitors.  He said some days there were none, other days there were many.  I saw five other people as I left.

This is one of the few museums I have visited that does not have a donation box.

I took the photo of WaaTeeKaa on 19-November-2011.  

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