Hop on Board and Travel Back in Time
A replica of the Texas locomotive and Marietta historian Brad Quinlin take passengers on the journey of the Great Locomotive Chase.
All aboard! Hop on the Texas III, get out your camera, cover your ears and hold onto your hat as the train replica sounds its horn and pulls out of Marietta Square.
The replica of the Texas locomotive, which was involved in the Confederates' pursuit of the General in the Great Locomotive Chase that occurred 150 years ago, takes passengers out of Marietta and over to the Southern Museum of Civil War & Locomotive History in Big Shanty, that's modern day Kennesaw.
The next tour to Kennesaw pulls out at 3 p.m. on Saturday. A tour around Marietta Square will take place at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are being sold in Glover Park.
Local historian Brad Quinlin is your tour on this great adventure. Quinlin takes you back to that historic day 150 years ago and retells the experience from the Union perspective. Dressed in his Civl War garb, Quinlin becomes John Porter of Ohio, a member of Andrews' Raiders and the seventh recipient of the Medal of Honor.
From being asked to be a member of a secret mission that required railroad experience to learning of the daring plan the Raiders had to destroy the railroad lines out of Chattanooga, arriving in Marietta, stealing the General (which can be seen at the Southern Museum), being chased by the General's conductor William Fuller and his men aboard the Texas, abandoning the General and eventually being caught, Quinlin takes you through the exciting chase.
"When they caught us, they called us raiders and train thieves! How dare they call us that!" Quinlin, as John Porter, exclaimed. "We told them we were from Kentucky and that we were trying to find a Georgia unit to enlist in. It turned out to be a bad thing to do because when they brought us in with the others (two members of Andrews' Raiders who had overslept and missed the chase) they said they didn't know us." Since the men claimed to be from the same part of Kentucky, this was suspicious.
While Quinlin tells the well known story of the Great Locomotive Chase, what makes this tour a treat are the side comments and little details he throws into the tour.
One tidbit I found particularly interesting and comical was that the two members of Andrews' Raiders that overslept and therefore missed the Great Locomotive Chase received the Medal of Honor along with the others who were a part of the chase.
"If this event had been successful, it may have shortened the war by two years and saved the lives of 200,000 Americans," Quinlin shared.
At 2 p.m., Historian Paul Johnson will discuss the technology of weapons during the war at the Marietta Museum of History.
At 2 p.m., the 8th Regiment Band of the Georgia Volunteer Infantry will play in the Square.
From 4 to 6 p.m. it's a Disney party for kids in Glover Park.
At 6 p.m., Clint Johnson will talk about the chase, capture and persecution of Jefferson Davis at 2 Rules Fine Art.
Wrapping up Saturday is a showing of The General at the Strand Theatre.