Amherst Pays Tribute to Palmer

The Amherst Railway Society has two projects underway to honor the railroad legacy of Palmer, Massachusetts.

HO-scale railroad

The first is construction of an HO-scale model railroad in the lower level of the Amherst building on South Main Street. While the layout will not be a replica of the railroads of Palmer, it will have many recognizable elements of the railroad town, including structures and track configuration.

The railroad is being designed with both double-track mainline sections, as well as single-track branch line segments. Operations will include prototype locals and switching operations, and display mode continuously running trains.

Work sessions are scheduled several times each month. Please see the Calendar page of the Amherst website – – for specific dates and times. However, not all work on the project needs to be done on-site. Structures and other scenery elements can be built at home.

Coordinators for the HO-scale project are: Steve Belforti, Joe Biagioni, and Clark Huber.

Garden railroad

The second project is a G-scale outdoor garden railroad to be constructed on the Amherst Railway Society property.

This project “broke ground” at the July board meeting with the approval of a Garden Railroad Special Interest Group (SIG). With the SIG status in place, budget money can be allocated to the project and the planning phase of the project can get underway.

Coordinators for the Garden Railroad project are: Joe Biagioni, Christine Davenport, and John Sacerdote.

The Amherst Railway Society has retained long-time garden railway designer Nancy Norris to plan the Amherst project. Nancy has written extensively for Garden Railways magazine and has authored several books on garden railroads.

As with the HO-scale railroad, Amherst’s garden railroad will honor the railroad history of Palmer.

Nancy Norris