Lake Superior Theatre - 270 N Lakeshore Blvd. Marquette, MI 49855

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The Orphan Train

ORPHAN TRAIN

A wonderful story, moving, amusing, and always tellingly human of nine orphans on an Orphan Train that left New York City on May 28, 1914, and traveled to Midwestern towns in search of homes for the children. The lonesome whistle wails as the train chugs between encounters of anxiety, laughter, wistfulness, rejection and acceptance. Eight stories unfold, each a memorable surprise. THE ORPHAN TRAIN is a charming heart-warmer . The first Orphan Train Riders (14 boys), arrived in Dowagiac, Michigan on Sunday morning in late September 1854, traveling on the Michigan Central Railroad.  By 1927, forty-three Michigan 
towns would also receive orphans from the “Baby Train”, as it was sometimes called.  Most of the 
children came from the New York Children’s Aid Society and the New England Home for “Little 
Wanderers”. 

Between 1854 and 1929

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hirty nine percent were girls, and most children were never adopted. Between 1854 and 1929 an estimated 200,000 orphaned, abandoned, and homeless children were placed out during, what is known today as, the Orphan Train Movement. The name is derived 
from the children’s situations, though they were not all orphans, and the mode of transportation used to move them across forty-seven states and Canada.

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