The Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum is one of the finest social history museums that I have been to and is worth a stop for anyone interested in the past - not just railroad buffs.
The museum's focus on the ethnic neighborhoods and the culture of Altoona take this museum far beyond the narrow focus of railroad history.
A tour of the museum begins with a fine interpretive film that focuses on the early days of Altoona's important role in the development of the Pennsylvania Railroad.
From there the permenant exhibits focus on the daily life of a railroad worker and his family in the late 19th and early 20th century. Highlights include a recreated tavern and living room, and exhibits on sports and recreation in the era.
Also included of course are great exhibits on railroad history that focus on the engineering feats accomplished by the PRR in the Altoona locomotive shops and the famous Horseshoe Curve.
The gift shop has lots for the railroad buff and is also worth a stop.
This is a first class museum and anyone living in or visiting the area must take time to see it!