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!"

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  • Small | Virtual school program transcon photo

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

    Available for grades 3-7 and 8-12.

    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

  • Free Virtual Adult Programs

    Join us on Zoom for a variety of historical presentations. These programs are totally free, you just need to register. Find the full slate of virtual adult programs here

    Saturday, April 10: Digging into the Archives - Steam into Saturday Virtual Happy Hour
    5:30pm Central Time
    Join us for a sneak peek behind the scenes at some of the museum's most exciting collections items rarely seen and not currently on display.

    Register here  

    Tuesday, April 20: Railroads go to the Movies

    2:00pm and 6:00pm Central Time

    Almost since the birth of cinema, filmmakers have been drawn to trains as subjects, settings, and symbols. In honor of Oscars season, we'll explore our favorite train films and trains on film, and discuss the century long love affair between railroads and the movies.

    Register here

    Saturday, April 24: Murder Mystery - Steam into Saturday Virtual Happy Hour

    5:30pm Central Time

    Can you solve the mystery before the time is up? Join us for a brand new experimental virtual evening of puzzles and intrigue. Come play our original interactive, choose-your-path murder mystery game based on photos and objects from the museum's collection.

    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.