Black Butte Center for Railroad Culture

Black Butte freight office
Black Butte, CA. January, 1964. Photo by Richard Steinheimer, from the collection of Shirley Burman, used by permission

Note: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the BBCRC remains closed and we do not anticipate having any organized events in the near future. Please see our News page for more information. Thanks for your understanding.

The Black Butte Center for Railroad Culture (BBCRC) preserves and promotes railroad culture by documenting and furthering the art, music, literature, community, and work of those who, historically and in modern times, travel or work on the railroads of North America. We are interested in railroad infrastructure, history, and operations, but also the human side of railroading. Several of our key supporters and board members are rail workers. We combine our core focus on railroad culture with inclusive community-building, local ecological conservation, sustainable food cultivation, and habitat restoration. The BBCRC has a nationwide constituency but also has close links to local institutions and people in and around Siskiyou County.

The BBCRC is based at Black Butte, a small rail junction on the outskirts of Weed, CA adjacent to the Union Pacific (former Southern Pacific) mainline at Milepost 345. The ex-Southern Pacific "Siskiyou Line", now operated by the Central Oregon and Pacific RR, diverges from the UP mainline at a wye just at the north end of our site. Across the tracks is the Black Butte water tank, a historic 1926 steam-era structure. We are located right at the base of Mt. Shasta, a 14,162' volcano, and just two miles from the trailhead for the 6325' high Black Butte plug-dome volcano. Our site includes a large compound as well as adjacent forest and wetland areas.

Since its establishment in 2007-8, the BBCRC has developed a library/info shop resource center, a creative arts gallery and work space, and an increasingly popular music performance spot in two historic 1920's-era boxcars. Three cabooses are also on the site. Ecological restoration work is ongoing. We host regular art, music, and other shows as well as other rail-oriented gatherings. For more info on the BBCRC and our specific projects click on the links above.

The Black Butte Center for Railroad Culture is an all volunteer-run 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation (EIN 26-1336678) run by a seven-person board of directors. BBCRC organizational and financial documents are available to the public on request. Our mailing address is 800 Black Butte Rd. Weed, California 96094. You can leave a message on our office phone at (530) 938-3856 or email us at