Skip to content

Colfax Railroad Museum awarded $1,000 Tom Dailey Foundation grant

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX  —  The Colfax Railroad Museum has been awarded a $1,000 grant from the Tom E. Dailey Foundation.

The Colfax Railroad Museum’s grant was one of 17 grants totaling $34,000 that were approved at the August 21 quarterly board meeting of the Tom E. Dailey Foundation, which is located in Chicago.

According to the foundation’s announcement, “A previous grant winner, the (Colfax Railroad) museum requested funding for the purchase of unique metalworking tools needed for the restoration of the Coronet Phosphate #5 2-6-2T locomotive, four Milwaukee Road cars and several smaller projects. The group was founded in 1969. In addition to the locomotive and car projects, they are also continuing to restore their 1898 museum/depot.”

“This is an award from a foundation that grants awards on a national level,” said Herb Sakalaucks, owner and curator of the Colfax Railroad Museum.

Since the Tom E. Dailey Foundation was created in 2013, it has awarded $414,300 in grants, according to the foundation’s website.

“The Tom E. Dailey Foundation Inc. was established through an endowment by Tom Dailey, a senior executive in the payment processing industry for over 30 years,” according to the foundation’s website.

“The Foundation was created as a way to support specific causes which are close to his heart and to share the blessings he has received. Grants are available in eligible categories to qualified organizations in amounts up to $15,000,” the website states.

Of the 17 awards in this particular grant cycle for the Tom Dailey Foundation, ten of the grants were for railroad museum projects, such as the Hopewell Depot project in New York to replicate the signal tower, the Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust in Pennsylvania to restore a 1920s “heavyweight” passenger car, and the Southern Appalachia Railway Museum in Tennessee for the interior restoration of the 1947 Southern Railroad Fort McPherson coach.

The Colfax Railroad Museum acquired the small locomotive last fall from an estate in Annandale, Minnesota.

Part of the appeal of the little steam engine, Sakalaucks said, is that it is small enough for people to be able to walk up to it and see inside the compartment where the train engineer would have been sitting to operate the locomotive.