RANKIN (KDKA) – A rare wooden caboose made the trek from Washington County to Rankin Wednesday morning.

The Unity Railway 53A was built in 1916 in Middletown, New York for the New York, Ontario and Western Railway.

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“In the 1950s, it was sold to the Unity Railway, which is near Monroeville, and it was used on the coal mine trains in that area and then in 1966, the Unity donated it to the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum,” Scott Becker, of the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, said.

Volunteers at the museum in Washington County have been preserving the caboose for over 40 years, but now it has a new home.

Crews with Brownlee Trucking used a crane to move and load the 30,000-pound caboose onto a trailer. From there, they took it to Rankin to the Carrie Furnace site, which is now maintained by Rivers of Steel Heritage.

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“I’m glad we’re are able to provide a home for it, it doesn’t fit the collection of the trolley museum here, but it does fit into what we do. The Unity Railway that owned this caboose was a coal hauler and they hauled coal down to the steel mills,” Rick Rowlands, of Rivers of Steel Heritage, said.

At the new site, the vintage caboose will be inside and used for office space and a gift shop.

This will be the third piece of railroad related equipment at Carrie Furnace. The hope is to continue to grow that number.

“That entire site was heavily served by rail and one of the things we are trying to do there is bring pieces of rail equipment to the site so that we can show the connection of railroad to steel making,” Rowlands said.

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