JONESBOROUGH, Tenn. (WJHL) — The Chuckey Depot Museum held a reception on Saturday for its newest exhibit “Our Work, Our Stories: African Americans, Women, and the Railroad.”
The newest installation features historical artifacts paired with plenty of information on the inventors, dreamers and union members that improved the railroad system and how people travel. This exhibit is on display until September.
“We just came off the heels of Black History Month,” said Chair of the Exhibit’s Subcommittee Rick Chinouth. “And then this month is Women’s History Month, so it just worked out so perfectly that we felt like we wanted to highlight the accomplishments and the inventions and all the very creative developments that both of these groups of folks did for the railroad industry.”
The museum’s seasonal exhibit changes every six months, according to Chinouth. This installation highlights names and events like Pullman Porters, Gandy Dancers, Harvey Girls and the railroad during World War II.
Chinouth told News Channel 11 about the reception’s guest speaker, Millie Longcrier, a local resident with historical ties to the railroad.
“Millie Longcrier is a native originally, so she’s local,” he said. “She lives in Johnson City now, but in 1980 she joined the Clinch Field Railroad as a brakeman, which was an interesting job for a woman to do.”
“She was the person that actually connected all the cars to the engines and cut cars off the line at different places,” he said “So she was very much doing what was usually a man’s job up until that time. And she worked for 15 years and had a good career in the Clinch Field Railroad.”
The Chuckey Depot Museum is located at 210 South 2nd Avenue in the heart of Jonesborough.
The museum’s seasonal hours from March through September 2023 are Thursday, Friday, and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.