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Flagler's Railcar #91: Palm Beach, Florida

Henry Flagler's Railroad Car #91 can be seen at One Whitehall Way in Palm Beach at the Henry Flagler Museum.

Railcar No. 91 was built in Delaware in 1886 by the Jackson & Sharp company for the personal use of Mr. Flagler. The car is located in the Flagler Kenan Pavilion, on the Flagler Museum grounds in Palm Beach. In addition to being a showcase for Flagler's railcar, the Pavilion also houses the Museum's Café des Beaux-Arts.

A newspaper article written at the time of its delivery to Flagler heralded the railcar as “A Palace on Wheels” and went on to praise the car’s fine appointments such as its oak paneling and desk.

The railcar was one of two private railcars Flagler used to survey his railroad empire. Flagler traveled by this railcar in 1912 along the Overseas Railway to Key West to celebrate the completion of the FEC Railway to Key West, a phenomenal engineering feat.

In 1935, the FEC sold Flagler’s private railcar to the Georgia Northern Railroad and it was renamed the Moultrie. By 1949 the Railcar had been sold again and was being used as housing for migrant farm workers in Virginia. The Flagler Museum acquired the Railcar in 1959. Railcar No. 91 has now been restored to its original appearance using documentation from the National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian, the Delaware State Archives, and the Hagley Museum and Library in Delaware.

Visitors to the Flagler Kenan Pavilion are able to tour Railcar No. 91's salon, master bedroom, master bathroom, guest quarters, and kitchen restored to their original splendor.

I especially loved his cast iron stove and pans seen on his on-board kitchen in the front section of Railcar #91. Mr. Flagler traveled in style.


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