Lewes railroad association restoring caboose

Train car will become part of new display on tracks adjacent to library
May 8, 2022

The Lewes Junction Railroad and Bridge Association is keeping to its mission to preserve and interpret railroad history in Lewes and Sussex County.

The association is restoring a 1917 Pennsylvania Railroad caboose. Currently lettered DCLR 1000 for Delaware Coast Line Railroad, the caboose served Sussex County for many years until 2017, including playing a role in the Queen Anne’s Railroad tourist operation in the 1990s.

Built as PRR 477123 by the Pennsylvania Railroad in its shops in Altoona, Pa., the caboose is undergoing cosmetic repairs in Georgetown under the direction of board member David Ludlow. Community volunteers are lending a hand to prepare this example of railroad history for relocation to the preserved section of track between the Lewes Public Library and Rollins Community Center. Ludlow invites anyone interested in helping with the project to contact him at

In addition, the association continues to work at the new site of the 1916 Lewes railroad swing bridge at the junction of American Legion Road and the rail-to-trail.

Plans include installation of permanent fencing around the bridge, a bike rack, bench and landscaping as well as interpretive signage. A fall 2022 completion date is anticipated.

The project is a joint effort between the association, Delaware Department of Transportation and Boy Scout Troop 186 of Milford. It was made possible by the City of Lewes’ agreement to place the bridge, one of the last remaining of its kind, on the city-owned parcel. The association will be responsible for maintaining the display.

When the bridge was originally installed on the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal, a date stone was inserted on the west abutment. Carved with “1916,” the stone was carefully cut from the abutment with a diamond wire saw by R.E. Pierson, the contractor responsible for the bridge lift and move, and now is displayed next to the bridge. It will be integrated into the final site design.

More information can be found at, where donations to support the association's work can be made.


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