Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

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This is the "Petticoat Junction" water tower as it was back in summer of 2006.
They placed a roof atop of it to keep the tree leaves from falling in the watertower and cloggling it up. They run a steam train engine there some times and you all know that a steam train needs alot of water. It is located in Jamestown, CA, at "Railtown, Columbia State Park". The Sierra Railroad owns and operates it and you can ride on the train for a short ride. You may take a look at my photo album of the area and trains...Titles...Oakdale Dinner Train 2007 & Columbia State Park. The diesel train engine was one of the ammunition trains from the Concord Naval Wepons Station Railroad. It must have hauled a lot of ammo & bombs that went to Vietnam.

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Comment by Michael Ninneman on December 20, 2012 at 11:23am

This is NOT the original tank, as stated before. It was completely torn down and rebuilt in 2002, shown here by the relatively new timbers. Railtown 1897 is a California State Historic Park, and NOT owned by the Sierra Railroad, which is a private operation (hence the name on the Railtown trains being Sierra RailWAY, rather than RailROAD). It is also a completely separate operation from Columbia State Park. The reason for the new roof is NOT to keep the tree leaves out, it is to protect the structure underneath from the weather (snowfall & heavy rain which speed up deterioration). It is loosely based on the older Jamestown water tank's roof prior to 1938. The new structure built in 1938 did not have a roof, so in more ways than one this new water tank makes very little historically accurate sense.

Comment by Robert Hogan on October 10, 2012 at 8:47am

David...Nice photo.  Confirming what was already noted, this is NOT the actual "Petticoat Junction" water tank used in the filming of the TV series.  It is similar and was built on the same 1938 concrete footings, which are the only part of the old tank remaining.  This particular water tank was built in 2001 by the State and it is an approximation replica of a "typical" Sierra Railway/Railroad water tank.  The actual "Petticoat Junction" tank served the SRR from 1938 until the early 1970's when the actual wood water tank portion was replaced with a smaller one still using the original platform.  The platform was then replaced in 1982 and the 1970's era small tank was placed on it.  The 2001 tank rebuilding returned the water tank to the original size and added the roof, which is similar to several of the Sierra's water tanks in use thru the 1960's.  The Railtown 1897 Historic State park website has a complete history of the water tank and the water facilities at this Jamestown location.

Bob Hogan

Comment by powerpawsnw on October 9, 2012 at 5:38pm

Actually, it's not the same tower as used in the TV series. That one wore out some years back, and CSRM (as Railtown 1897 SHP administrator) paid to have a fully functional replica of the even earlier Sierra Railway roofed tank built in its place.

Comment by David Huddleston on August 24, 2012 at 4:03pm

Steve A. You may also remember the "Sacramento Northern Railroad ran by the Navy's Railroad, (Old Baypoint & Clayton Railroad). I'm modeling the Sacramento Northern Railroad. I have just about all of the equipment that they had, only in HO scale.

Comment by David Huddleston on August 24, 2012 at 4:00pm

The Oakdale Dinner Train has downsized a bit...but the food is excellant...see my photos...the "Flat Iron Steak" is the best.

Comment by David Huddleston on August 24, 2012 at 3:59pm're right.

Comment by Steve Atnip on August 23, 2012 at 5:10pm

Mentioning CNWSta brings back some memories. I worked there briefly in the Fire Dept, and the "Tidal" station, as it was called, was right next to the loco refueling pump, and they ran 24 hrs, so I had a few "Z"s interrupted, possibly by that same loco.

Comment by Zachary M. Toler on August 23, 2012 at 5:04pm

I've seen the dinner train photos, but I'll check them out again! Also will have to ride that dinner train sometime!


Zachary M. Toler

Comment by David Huddleston on August 23, 2012 at 3:20pm

This has been there before the TV show.  It supplies the water for the steam engines, for the Sierra Railroad and still does. The Sierra Railroad is a working railroad, (the Dinner Train is Great). The trees must have grown there, that's why they placed a roof on top of it, to keep the leaves out.  Check out my "Dinner Train" photos.

Comment by Zachary M. Toler on August 22, 2012 at 8:21pm

Nice find, David! I remember watching that show when I was a kid and TV Land still played what they're supposed to-old TV shows. Was this moved here, or have those trees grown in since the show ended?

Zachary M. Toler

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