Club Membership

         Unique Volunteer Activities for Rail Enthusiasts . . .

         Unique Travel Opportunities for families, Singles, Groups . . .

If you like trains and travel, you should join the Twentieth Century Railroad Club! Since 1971, "the Century" has been the first choice of Chicago-area railfans who prefer to enjoy their hobby as members of a dynamic club offering a wide range of activities. We're also the first choice of smart travelers, who know how enjoyable it is to take the train -- the most civilized form of land transportation ever invented.

Each year, our Club schedules ten to twenty trips for members and the public, including one-day excursions on commuter and Amtrak trains, two- or three-day weekend adventures via Amtrak, and elaborate five- to ten-day Vacations with the Century. On the latter, you'll experience what one writer described as "...the romance of the night train...dinner in the diner...cocktails in the club car...the soothing rhythm of steel wheels  on steel rails...A passage through time, space and history...and the heart of America's memories."

On the second Wednesday of each month (except December), we hold a Members Meeting at 600 W. Washington. These meetings include multi-media presentations examining a particular aspect of railroading, such as steam locomotives, streetcars, "dinner in the diner" or the history of various railroad companies.

Club members also share their enthusiasm for rail travel with the general public. We've carried over 60,000 passengers aboard our "special" trains chartered from Amtrak, our nostalgic excursions powered by steam locomotives, and our exclusive "private varnish" excursions aboard luxurious, fully-restored vintage railroad cars. These trains give our members a chance to earn free passage by volunteering to serve on board as car hosts, entertainers, bartenders, waiters and cooks.

In fact, all Club activities are planned and carried out by Club members, who donate their time and expertise. We invite you to join us! You'll soon learn why Agatha Christie wrote that "Trains are wonderful...to travel by train is to see nature and human beings, towns and churches and rivers; in fact, to see life."

The nearly 1,000 members of our Club are kept well-informed by our monthly newsletter, The Fast Mail, an eight-page publication filled with details of Club activities, rail-related news items and photos and articles on railroad history.

The Club has a $10 student membership available (age 17 or younger), so donít forget your sons, daughters, nieces, nephews, etc. Younger people are always welcome; indeed the Clubís founding fathers were teenagers at the time it was started!

Now you know why membership in the Twentieth Century Railroad Club is so rewarding: whether you like to do your railroading as a passenger, as a volunteer or as a student of history, our Club has what you're looking for! To become a member, just click here, print and fill out the order blank and mail it to us with your payment. You'll receive your membership card and your first issue of The Fast Mail in about two weeks.

The Twentieth Century Railroad Club is incorporated as a not-for-profit educational and historical organization. As an important part of our mission, we award scholarships to Midwestern universities, and matching grants to other railroad-oriented non-profit groups to aid in preserving and restoring railroad equipment and memorabilia. These awards are made as funds become available.