New Exhibit Unveiled on the History of Rail Transportation at the Joseph L. Bruno Rail Station

Riding the Rails Group Shot

June 11, 2024

Exhibit features artwork and design from RPI Architecture Graduate

RENSSELAER, NY (June 11, 2024) The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) and the Hart Cluett Museum announced today, Tuesday, June 11, the launch of a captivating new mini exhibit at the Joseph L. Bruno Rail Station. The exhibit showcases the rich history of rail transportation in Rensselaer County and features 16 informative panels mounted on two columns in the station’s waiting area.

Kathy Sheehan, Executive Director of the Hart Cluett Museum, emphasized the significant impact of rail travel on the region’s development: “The history of rail transportation in Rensselaer County is a testament to the pivotal role it played in the economic growth of the Capital Region. Railroads were instrumental in shaping our communities and industries, and we are excited to share this rich heritage with the public through this exhibit.”

The project was art-directed by RPI professor Sara Tack and designed by Joey Morse, an Architecture Major from the RPI Class of 2024. The exhibit offers customers a visual journey through the rise of rail travel in the county from the 1830s to the present day. Each panel displays historic photos from the museum’s extensive collection and shares little-known facts about the evolution of rail transportation in the region.

RPI Architecture Major, Joey Morse said, “It is a great feeling to work on a project that will help showcase and educate the thousands of travelers a year at the rail station. It was rewarding to go through the process and to see my work printed and showcased. Thank you to RPI for this outstanding opportunity.”

Assemblyman John McDonald said, “We are so proud to see the rich history of rail in Rensselaer County showcased at Joseph L. Bruno Rail Station. This display gives the community a glimpse into how rail became what we know today. Thank you to the Hart Cluett Museum, RPI, CDTA and John Nigro for their partnership to make this display come alive.”

Carm Basile, CDTA CEO said, “This exhibit is an excellent example of how community partnerships can bring our region’s history to life. CDTA is proud to support initiatives that educate and engage the public. This exhibit is both thought-provoking and engaging, and we hope customers at the Joseph L. Bruno Rail Station enjoy it.”

The exhibit was made possible through the generous sponsorship of CDTA, Nigro Retail Properties, and RPI. Their contributions have enabled the Hart Cluett Museum to create an educational and visually compelling experience for all travelers passing through the Joseph L. Bruno Rail Station.

RPI Director of Community Relations, La Tasha A. Brown, Ph. D said, “The History of Rail Transportation in Rensselaer County" exhibit takes visitors on a journey through the county's rich rail transportation history. The historical photographs in the exhibit, a result of our collaborative efforts, not only showcase the impact of rail transportation on the development and growth of our local communities but also evoke a sense of nostalgia and connection. The exhibit aims to educate, inspire, and deeply engage visitors of all ages, offering a glimpse into the past and highlighting the significance of railroads in shaping our county's history.”