Wednesday, August 10: Historian John Hankey's 'Railroads in American Culture' Lecture (6-7 p.m.)

We are offering a special lecture on Union Pacific in American popular culture by noted railroad historian John Hankey. Due to the popularity of Hankey's presentations, advance ticket purchases are strongly recommended.

The "Pacific Railroad" captured the American imagination as early as 1832 and became reality in 1869 with the driving of the Golden Spike. For almost 185 years, the "Railroad to the Pacific" has had a special place in American popular culture. In his lecture, Hankey will explore the Pacific Railroad's special place in our culture and explain why Union Pacific is indeed "America's Railroad."

Doors will open to the UP Museum, located at 200 Pearl St in Council Bluffs, at 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 10. Seating is limited, so tickets are recommended and will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. This special lecture is $15 per ticket for the public or $10 for museum patrons.

Tickets may be purchased over the phone or in person, during the museum's regular business hours, by contacting Jordan Sherbondy at 712-329-8307 or

John Hankey's Bio

John Hankey is an independent scholar, curator, historian and railroader. A native of Baltimore, he served the B&O Railroad in a variety of capacities including company historian, locomotive engineer and Curator of the B&O Railroad Museum. He holds a BS from the John Hopkins University, an MA as a Hagley Fellow at the University of Delaware and did further graduate study at the University of Chicago. He retains current qualifications as a locomotive engineer and conductor, and is an adjunct professor in the University of Nebraska-Omaha Department of History. Hankey also is curator of the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad, a major heritage and economic development railroad operation in Maryland. He is a frequent contributor to Trains Magazine and other publications. Hankey currently serves as a consultant to railroads, railroad museums and historic preservation projects throughout the United States.

Back to Top View More Stories