Explore Railroad

Located in historic downtown Council Bluffs, Iowa, on the Missouri River, we're a great place for friends and family to come and learn about the Union Pacific Railroad.


Museum Information

General Admission is free 

Currently Closed Due to COVID-19 

All donations support the Union Pacific Museum Association, a 501(c)3 registered nonprofit.

Visitor Reviews

"Great place to go on a winter's day. Very educational!"

"Keep up the good work. It was fun learning about trains. It's an amazing museum!"

"This museum has fantastic displays! Love the demonstration of what made America great: hard working American spirit!"

Read more on Facebook...

  • Order your 2021 Union Pacific Calendar today! 

    The 2021 Union Pacific Calendars are now available to purchase!

  • Small | Virtual school program transcon photo

    Register for FREE Virtual School Program: Legacy of the Transcontinental Railroad

    Available for grades 3-6, 7-9, and 10-12.

    Start your history investigation! What does the transcontinental railroad mean in American history? Analyze the clues, consider different perspectives, and draw your own conclusion.


    Register here

  • Virtual Adult Programs

    Join us on Zoom for a variety of historical presentations. These programs are totally free, you just need to register.


    December 5, 5:30pm (central): Wartime Railroad Advertising - Steam into Saturday Virtual Happy Hour

    How did the railroad advertise its support for wartime mobilization? Join us for an exploration of Union Pacific's wartime posters. Register Here


    December 8, 2:00pm (central): Wheels of War - Virtual Presentation

    Railroads have played a part in every U.S. war since 1860. During the Civil War, World Wars I and II, the Gulf War, and even today, railroads transported soldiers and everything they need, from tanks to uniforms. Learn more about this exciting history through this webinar. Register Here


    December 15, 2:00pm (central: Mail by Rail - Virtual Presentation

    As we enter the postal service's busiest time of year, let's explore the history of mail on the railroad! Railroads and the mail go way back and we'll explore some of that history including tales of daring and danger - all part of the job of ensuring the mail arrived safely by rail. Register Here


    December 19, 5:30pm (central): Polar Express Happy Hour and Trivia - Steam into Saturday Happy Hour
    Celebrate the end of the year and the beginning of winter with us! The nights have grown long, so fill this one with light (from your screen), company (virtual, natch), and some light competition (trivia). Register Here

  • Museum Reopening Update

    While we are eager to welcome you into the museum again, our primary concern is the health and safety of all visitors, volunteers and staff. We are closely monitoring local COVID-19 reporting and following CDC recommendations.


    For the museum to reopen safely the surrounding community needs to have a 14 day decline in new COVID-19 cases and a stable or decreasing positivity rate of 5%. This standard has not yet been met.


    Until that benchmark occurs, the museum is closed to protect our guests, volunteers and staff.

    In the meantime, we will continue to host virtual events. Stay tuned to our Facebook page and website for information about virtual events.

  • Public Access Temporarily Suspended

    Due to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 virus, in the best interest of our visitors and staff, the Union Pacific Museum will suspend public access starting March 14, 2020. All programs and tours have been cancelled until further notice. We are committed to the health, safety, and well-being of our visitors, volunteers and staff. We look forward to seeing you when the danger has passed.

  • Small | Union Pacific Museum at Night

    SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE - FREE First Friday Night at the Museum Every Month

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, First Friday Night at the Museum is suspended until it is once again safe to gather in person.