The Arcade & Attica Railroad began its existence as a handful of incomplete tracks, proceeding in stops and starts through the Allegheny River valley. When the Pennsylvania Railroad Company decided it needed service to Buffalo, it bought up the disparate stretches of rail line and linked them together. The company and its successors hardly imagined it to be one of their more long-lasting endeavors, but the little railroad weathered track washouts and bankruptcies and even made it through the Great Depression without laying off a single employee. In the 1950s, its owners decided to try short, scenic passenger excursions to bolster their flagging freight business, and the tourist line as it exists today was born.
These days, trains launch from historical Arcade Station, which is a small museum of American railroad history. A restored steam engine idles out front, waiting to pull up to 382 passengers through countryside largely unchanged since the 1880s. In addition to stunning views, excursions provide photo opportunities with the locomotive and the chance to enthusiastically wear striped overalls in public.