Near Union in McHenry County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Cats have been a part of the railroad scene almost since the first rails were laid. Many railroad facilities, such as yard offices, rural stations, and interlocking towers, have had resident cats who have adopted (or let themselves be adopted by) railroaders. In return for food and a place to sleep, the cats helped keep pests under control.
One railroad even had a cat as its primary advertising symbol. The Chesapeake & Ohio's ads featured a kitten named Chessie, and described travel on its trains as so smooth that passenger could "sleep like a kitten." During World War II, C&O's ads also showed a male cat called Peake, dressed in a soldier's hat.
IRM has been home to many railroad cats over the years. Currently, Slurpy and Tiger often "help" the office staff, while Socks hangs out at the Electric Car Shop in Barn 4. Between naps, all three regularly patrol "their" museum. Please say hello to them if they stroll past!
Erected by Illinois Railway Museum.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Animals • Industry & Commerce • Railroads & Streetcars.
Location. 42° 13.671′ N, 88° 31.646′ W. Marker is near Union, Illinois, in McHenry County. Marker is on the south wall of the Signal Department building, on the grounds of the Illinois Railway Museum. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 7000 Olson Road, Union IL 60180, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Union Pacific 18 (within shouting distance of this marker); Soo/Milwaukee Road X-5001 (within shouting distance of this marker); Chicago and North Western 9933 (within shouting distance of this marker); Early Railroad Signals (within shouting distance of this marker); Chicago Railways Company Date Stone (within shouting distance of this marker); Soo Terminal Warehouse Limestone Entablature ca. 1912 (within shouting distance of this marker); Railroad Rails (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific 37A (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Union.
Also see . . . Chessie the Railroad Kitten. (Submitted on December 21, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on December 21, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 1,227 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 21, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.