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Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana: All Aboard

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

The Monon Connection in Monon, Indiana is thought to be the largest detailed train museum in the world!

After spending two hours in this White County museum, I can’t imagine anything larger.

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

The Monon Connection Museum was absolutely amazing! I love when our travels take us somewhere that just blows us away. We left in absolute awe.

Originally we wondered if the large freight cars of various sizes, colors, and kinds outside were the museum. Boy, were we wrong. The Monon Connection Museum is connected to the Whistle Stop Restaurant.

It’s amazing to think that this super tiny Indiana town (with a population under 1800) boasts the largest collection of train stuff anywhere.

Indiana Train Museum

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

Harold Harvey, our tour guide, (who also designed the new Monon town logo) knew absolutely everything about the various pieces in this Indiana museum. Not only a tour guide, Mr. Harvey was the guy who happened to sell the owner (Dale Ward) the first train piece that got the whole thing started in the first place!

Did you know that each of the various train lines had their own dining car china, a pattern specific to them, that differed between regions? The museum has extremely rare patterns and pieces. In one instance, out of three remaining demitasse cups, they have two.

There was an exhibit that recreated the old Illinois Depot. With loads of detail, from the tickets to the timetable, this was a unique life-sized peek into the past!

Go There

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

Monon Connection Museum in Monon, Indiana

Whether you consider yourself a train fanatic or just find Indiana history interesting, I would definitely encourage you to check out the Monon Connection Museum.

Just make sure to give yourself plenty of time. We may have spent two hours there, but we still didn’t have enough time to see and read everything.

Small Towns: Destinations, not Drive-Thrus! I’m Jessica Nunemaker and THIS is little Indiana!

Find pictures in Indiana on my Flickr photostream or on the new little Indiana Tumblr blog.

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Monon Connection Museum
10012 U.S. 421
Monon, Indiana 47959
219.253.4101

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Special thanks to Rensselaer Adventures Blog for the suggestion.

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About Jessica Nunemaker

Jessica Nunemaker is the little Indiana owner, Host of a little Indiana segment state-wide on PBS and Publisher of the little Indiana Quarterly magazine. Sometimes, she even sleeps. You'll usually find Jessica gallivanting around Indiana towns (population 15,000 and less) with her husband, Jeremy, and two boys (ages 7 and 3) in tow in search of where to stay, play and eat in small towns across the state! Small towns: destinations, not drive-thrus!

5 comments

  1. We had driven by this for the past few years, but had never stopped. We went today and were amazed. The railroad-themed restaurant was delightful – fair prices, good food, friendly servers. Then we went through the Monon Connection itself and were blown away by the collection and the information shared by Harold Harvey. Between eating and touring, we were on the site for almost three hours, and didn’t see it all. Allow plenty of time when you go.

  2. Jessica Nunemaker

    Exactly! Harold is a font of information — pretty cool stuff.

    Thanks for stopping by little Indiana. It’s amazing what you can find out there! :)

  3. I agree with you 100%! I have a casual interest in trains. I had no idea the Monon Connection existed until last month, when I happened to drive by it on my way back to South Bend from Crawfordsville. The museum is amazing. Harold’s knowledge is incredible, and his enthusiasm is contagious. I knew I was looking at some neat things, but I had no idea how important and interesting they were until Harold started explaining the history and meaning of the items to me. Then everything took on a while new depth. In addition, the Whistle Stop restaurant is pretty good. Having it in conjunction with the museum makes the whole place a destination worth going out of your way to see. I recommend it highly. It was great to find your write-up about it here.

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