An Evening with the Winners of the 2023 John E. Gruber Creative Photography Awards

Tuesday, August 22, 2023
7:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom

YouTube Link

The 2023 John E. Gruber Creative Photography Awards Program brought in contestants from across the globe. With this year’s theme “The Role of Technology,” the judges reviewed and selected six winning photographs in a fascinating and interpretive competition.  In “An Evening with the Winners…” you’ll hear the insights and artistic approaches of the photographers behind this year’s winning images.


First Prize
Chris Walters, black-and-white
Blair Kooistra, color

Second Prize
Richard Koenig, black-and-white
John Troxler, color

Third Prize
Frank Barry, black-and-white
George Hiotis, color


This event is free.
This presentation will be recorded and be made available on our YouTube page,


Chris Walters, First Prize, black-and-white
Taken with a drone, this view looks straight down upon precise lines of Alstom Metropolis EMU sets – driverless passenger trains awaiting a turn in service on the Northwest Metro line between Tallawong, where this scene was captured, and Chatswood in New South Wales, Australia, on February 5, 2022.


Blair Kooistra, First Prize, color
Paul “Piglet” Middleton enjoys a tea break after running a London North Eastern Railway B-1 Thompson Class 4-6-0 locomotive at North Yorkshire Moors Railway’s Grosmont Motive Power Depot in North Yorkshire, England. The same law of thermodynamics that made it possible for the locomotive to move also help Paul heat his tea.

Ask the Archivist: Q&A for the Center’s new collections management system ‘Odyssey’

Tuesday, August 15, 2023
7:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom

YouTube Link

The online portal houses digitized images from the Center’s collection and was just recently launched in June 2023. Odyssey allows users to explore all of the Center’s collections in a dynamic and user-friendly format. Join our director of archives and collections, Adrienne Evans, and our reference and digital projects archivist, Erin Rose, in a tutorial of the site. You’ll also have the opportunity to ask our archives team any questions you may have regarding the functionality of the search portal.

Explore Odyssey:


This event is free.
This presentation will be recorded and be made available on our YouTube page,


Sunset on Santa Fe’s Needles District in the Mojave Desert, summer 1976, looking west to Amboy, Calif. Richard Steinheimer photo, Steinheimer-Burman-AG-Temp005

Center unveils Odyssey, our new digital archive of railroad imagery

The sky’s the limit for fans of railroads and photography who can happily immerse themselves in Odyssey, the Center for Railroad Photography & Art’s new collections management system. Odyssey is live and available to explore at this link.

The online portal was selected in June 2022 by CRP&A staff members to house digitized images from its collections. Over the past year, our archives team has worked closely with the platform’s developers to customize and implement the software. Dynamic and user-friendly, Odyssey will facilitate higher cataloging standards among Center staff and greater public searchability of collection materials. Users can explore all of the Center’s images that are available in its Flickr galleries, but now collected in a single location — as well as new offerings from John Gruber, Stan Kistler, David Mainey, and Jim Shaughnessy, with more to come from Richard Steinheimer and many others.

“The Center’s archives and digitization efforts have grown tremendously over the past few years, and Odyssey’s large storage capacity limit offers opportunities for even further collection development,” said Adrienne Evans, director of archives and collections. “We recently finished migrating all of our digital collections from Flickr to Odyssey and we’re excited to introduce everybody to the new portal. Being a new system, we’ll constantly make improvements as we expand the galleries to include more images from our growing collections.”

“After a lengthy search and implementation process, we’re excited to begin sharing more of our collections through Odyssey,” said Scott Lothes, president and executive director. “Our collections team has digitized tens of thousands of photographs in the past couple of years alone. We have so much to share with you.”

We’re deeply grateful for the generosity of donors and members who have made it possible to reach this milestone, and we encourage everyone to make their own odyssey! A search guide is available here.

Please direct any questions or comments to; follow the Center on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates.

PHOTO: Sunset on Santa Fe’s Needles District in the Mojave Desert, summer 1976, looking west to Amboy, Calif. Richard Steinheimer photo, Steinheimer-Burman-AG-Temp005

Linn Westcott’s Wildly Diverse Railroad Photography

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

7:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom

Registration Closed

Ask any model railroader to name the icons of the hobby, and certainly, Linn H. Westcott (1913-1980) will be mentioned somewhere. The longtime editor of Kalmbach’s Model Railroader magazine pioneered and even invented many of the techniques that continue to drive the hobby. Throughout his career, he also authored nearly a dozen books on model railroading, which sold more than two million copies in total. But Westcott loved the real thing too, and he definitely qualified as a railfan, as his early tenure at Trains magazine demonstrates. During those early years, he often carried a camera. Although he wouldn’t have described himself as a photographer, his images of trains and the railroad environment exhibit immense talent, especially when he was shooting with Kodachrome slides in the 1940s and ’50s.

Join former Trains editor and publisher Kevin P. Keefe for an extended look at Westcott’s wildly diverse railroad photography.


This event is free.
This presentation will be recorded and be made available on our YouTube page,




Images credit: Kalmbach Media

CRP&A Member Exclusive: The History and Development of Madison’s Railroads

Tuesday, June 20, 2023
7:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time), on Zoom
Registration closes at 4 pm CT on Monday, June 19

Registration Closed

CRP&A members can request the recording link at 

Our summer members-only program features a detailed look at the Center’s hometown Madison, Wisconsin, by our executive director Scott Lothes, showcasing the photography of John Gruber. These presentations are open to members of the Center and are presented to express our gratitude for their support. If you’re not a member, consider joining today to see this program as well as previous members-only events.

Railroads played a tremendous role in building Madison and south-central Wisconsin, and they continue to play a critical role in the regional economy. At their zenith, nine different railroad lines radiated out of Madison. Seven of those routes remain in service today, although only four of them still extend to their original destinations. This program will largely draw from the collection of John Gruber, the Center’s principal founder, who grew up in Prairie du Sac and lived in Madison, covering the changing railroad scene of Milwaukee Road, Chicago & North Western, and others.

Before the 20th-century rise of car culture and the building of the interstate highway system, a town’s ability to attract a railroad was a significant marker of its growth and economic health. In 2023, as Madison is considering a possible return of passenger rail, it’s a perfect time to examine local railroad history.

Join us on Tuesday, June 20, at 7 pm Central (5 pm PT / 6 pm MT / 8 pm ET) for this exciting program! This program is being recorded and will be made available to members by request.


This event is open to members of the CRP&A

Join Today! Become a member here




In 1955, a Milwaukee Road train rests nearby the Chicago & North Western depot with the capitol building visible in the background. Photograph by John Gruber.