There were ten of us, all young, and we started by restoring 400 historic trains. Diesel-powered locomotives, steam engines, electric locomotives, the carriages from the 1920s, 30s and pre-war period. Immediately afterwards we started work on the tracks and stations, restoring 1,000 kilometres of lines that were inactive and went through Italy’s most beautiful landscapes. The final stage were the archives and libraries that describe this extraordinary world, a world made of iron, of people, of rails and station masters. A large number of negatives and, above all, photographic plates that we had no idea how to restore. This heritage is now available for everybody, in digital format. The journeys are available on the Fondazione FS website, and all can enjoy the fruit of our work collecting and restoring existing material. That is why this is truly a beautiful Italian story.
The collection of the National Railway Museum of Pietrarsa gathers more than 55 historical rolling stocks, located in the ancient Pavilions of the bourbon workshop, which, back in time, used .to host all the specialized departments of the different making sections of the production cycle.
The visit gives the opportunity of a suggestive journey back in 1839, the year of the inauguration of the first Italian railway line, until more recent times.
Fondazione FS Italiane looks after and manages the Italian State Railways’ vast historic heritage: founded on the 6th of March 2013, it oversees a fleet of 400 pieces of historic rolling stock, the archives and library, both the Pietrarsa and the Trieste Campo Marzio Museums and the “Binari senza Tempo” project which has reopened tourist routes along what were once abandoned lines.