Bellevue is home to three outstanding museums: The Bellevue Historical Society (including the Tremont House), The Mad River & Nickle Plate Railroad Museum, and Historic Lyme Village.
BELLEVUE HISTORICAL SOCIETY
P.O. Box 304, Bellevue, Ohio 44811-0304
Facebook: bellevue historical
The City of Bellevue, on the west line of Western Reserve, the west line of Firelands, the west line of Huron County, the west line of Lyme Township, Huron County, and the east line of York Township, Sandusky County, was first settled by Mr. Mark Hopkins and family from Genessee County, New York, and was soon followed by Elnathan George from the same New York home. They built log houses near the crossing of the north and south county line road and the east and west road, now Main street. The third settler was Mr. Return Burlington who located on the York Township side and the new settlement now was named as York Cross Roads.
MAD RIVER & NKP RAILROAD MUSEUM
253 Southwest Street, Bellevue OH 44811-1377
Email: [email protected]
Facebook: Mad River NKP Museum
One of the earliest railroads that ran through Bellevue in 1839 was the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad, and the first engineer of the “Sandusky,” Thomas Hogg. The Mad River & NKP Railroad Society, a non-profit organization, chose this as part of our name when we formed. In 1976 we opened the museum as a lasting bicentennial project. Henry Flagler, who built the Florida East Coast Railroad once lived on the property where the museum is now located. The Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad was the second railroad to be built and operated in the U.S. state of Ohio (the Erie and Kalamazoo Railroad was first, beginning operations in Toledo during the Toledo War in 1836). It was also the first railroad company chartered west of the Allegheny Mountains. It is the largest railroad museum in the state of Ohio.
The railroad first broke ground in Sandusky, for construction on September 17, 1835 at the site which is currently Battery Park Marina. On November 17, 1837, the MR&LE took delivery of its first steam locomotive, Sandusky, built by Rogers, Ketchum and Grosvenor of Paterson, New Jersey. Sandusky was also the first locomotive built by Rogers, Ketchum and Grosvenor, and the first to include features such as cast iron driving wheels and counterweights. The locomotive’s transportation from New Jersey was overseen by Thomas Hogg. He was engineer for the locomotive for many years, and later became the railroad’s chief mechanical engineer. The MR&LE used a rail gauge of 4 ft 10 in (1,473 mm), a gauge that soon became known as “Ohio gauge.” At the time of the Sandusky’s arrival, no track had been laid by the railroad. The locomotive was used to aid construction, and the first trains (passenger cars only) began running on the line on April 11, 1838, between Sandusky and Bellevue, Ohio.
Pictured here is a replica of the Sandusky currently on Display at the Mad River & NKP Railroad Museum The Museum is Open Daily 12:00 PM – 4:00 Memorial Day through Labor Day – Weekends Only in May, September and October
NKP is the AAR reporting mark for the Nickel Plate Road (New York, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad Company) which ran through Bellevue from 1882 until 1964 when it merged with the Norfolk & Western Railway. Bellevue was a hub for the Nickel Plate operations and a division point for the railroad’s Buffalo to Chicago route. Bellevue housed the principal classification yards, the largest roundhouse in the system, all maintenance of way equipment for the road, the principal icing station, an engine terminal for both diesel and steam, headquarters of the general superintendent, and facilities that were used by four of the Nickel Plate’s divisions.
An Interesting Video: It’s been 40 years since this modern steam engine has made any trips. In this video it’s heading back to the Historical Train Museum in Bellevue, Ohio currently on the east side of Fremont, Ohio https://youtu.be/zC6L93SbzTA
And thanks to Brenda for taking the time to share these great photos of the museum (and her dog!).
NATIONAL POSTMARK MUSEUM
Located in Lyme Village
Email: [email protected]
The Margie Pfund Memorial Postmark Museum and Research Library (also known as the National Postmark Museum or PMCC Museum) is located near Bellevue, Ohio in the Historic Lyme Village. The library is available to club members for postal history research. The Post Mark Collectors Club is organized to encourage postmark collecting and the study of postal history, and to provide support for the Museum and Library. The goal of the museum is to provide education about postmarks and preserve postmark history. The Museum’s holdings comprise the largest single collection of postmarks in the world, with nearly two million philatelic and postal history items in all.