How You Can Join the Railroad


Walkersville Southern has many volunteer positions available for the railroad enthusiast. There are volunteer jobs for all skill levels--heavy jobs and light jobs, office jobs or outdoor jobs. To inquire about a volunteer job at the railroad, call 301/898-0899 and let us know you'd like to help, or come to the railroad and see what it's all about for yourself. You'll meet a great bunch of people.

We have about 70 or 80 volunteers, some of whom come only once or twice a year, some every week. The average age of our volunteers is about 50, but anyone age 18 and up can volunteer. There is a place for everyone . . . young and old, men and women. Over the course of time, you'll receive training, and your responsibilities and duties can grow as big as you like.

Jobs on the train operating crew at WSRR include the following:

EngineerEngineer - Operates the train, of course, and is responsible for the day's operations.

Fireman - Rides in the cab on southbound excursions and watches the left side of the train. Rides on the back of the train northbound serving as the eyes and ears of the engineer as the train backs up toward back to the station. Assists in operating switches and coupling cars.

ConductorConductor - Takes tickets, makes sure passengers are safely seated and comfortable, and guides the tour on the passenger cars. Answers questions about the railroad.


BrakemanBrakeman - Rides on the back of the train southbound announcing grade crossings for the benefit of the flagger who needs to know where the train is. Assists in operating switches and coupling cars.

Flagger - Drives to each crossing and protects the train as it crosses grade crossings. Must have a driver's license, a car, and must be 18.

Generally, employees begin operating crew training as apprentice brakemen for a short time, and then become brakemen. After a year as brakeman, a person is eligible for fireman training. Two years of fireman training make you eligible for engineer training. If you have experience on some other railroad, you will most likely bypass some of these requirements.

Operating crewmen are also required to undergo annual FRA-mandated training and testing, since our railroad is under the jurisdiction of the FRA.

There are many other areas of the railroad's operations where assistance is needed, such as:

Stationmaster - Sells tickets and/or souvenirs on an as-needed basis.

Radioman - Knows radios, intercoms, sound systems, etc. Can design, operate, install, and train novices to use this equipment. A plus, but certainly not a requirement, for this position is a valid Amateur Radio license.

Railroad Historians - Catalogs, researches, and displays all our "old junk."


Museum Docents - Greets visitors and answers questions in the museum.  Opens and closes the museum.  You don't need to know much about trains, just have a friendly attitude.

TrackmanTrackmen - A heavy job and a great way to stay fit. If you like outdoor work, this is the job for you! Install ties, run track machines, etc.

Mechanics - Keeps the train and track machines running.

Electricians - Keeps up all the headlights, crossing lights (again, when we get them), and all other lights and appliances.

Carpenters - Keeps the station and outbuildings shipshape.

Painters - Paints buildings and rolling stock.

If none of the above jobs suits you, c'mon down to the railroad on any excursion day, let us know what you would like to do, and we'll try to design a job for you. The bottom line is . . . GET INVOLVED!!!

Walkersville Southern needs you, and you'll have great fun.



Walkersville Southern Railroad does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, the appointment to and termination from its Board of Directors, hiring and firing of staff or contractors, selection of volunteers, selection of vendors, and providing of services.