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Program Information
 Radio Curious 
 Victoria Golden & Barry Vogel, Esq.
 Radio Curious - Barry Vogel  
 Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives (by-nc-nd) 
Radio Curious discusses the orphan trains of 1854-1930 with Victoria Golden, who helped author the autobiography of the last known orphan train survivor, William Delos Vansteenburgh, titled, “A Last Survivor of the Orphan Trains.”
Barry Vogel, Attorney and Counselor, is the Host and Producer of Radio Curious. Christina Aanestad is the Assistant Producers.
Between 1854 and 1930, it is estimated that between 200,000 and 250,000 children were involuntarily put on Orphan Trains, and "placed out" in the southern and western United States. Both protections for the health and safety of these children and record keeping of who they were, where they went and accounts of what happened to them are sketchy at best.

William Delos Vansteenburgh was one of the last of the "placed out" children on an Orphan Train. At age four, he and his slightly older brother with whom he virtually lost contact, were "placed out" from Pennsylvania, after their mother died in 1930. William had clear memories of being loved and treated well until then. After a long train ride he was removed from a station platform in Gallup, New Mexico, by Henry and Eleanor Walters, a childless couple. They gave him their last name, repeatedly abused him and treated him in a most wretched manner for five years. He successfully ran away at age nine and was then free to create a unique adventure and life for himself until he died in Santa Rosa, California, in 2017.

Victoria Golden, ( our guest in this edition of Radio Curious, met William Walters in 2012. Intrigued by his story and keen memory for details, they met most every week for the next four years. Golden recreated his story into a memoir: A Last Survivor of the Orphan Trains. Told in the first person, each page of Golden's book could be a stand-alone short read.

Victoria Golden, also of Ukiah, California, visited the Radio Curious studios on July 24, 2018. We began our conversation when I asked her to describe the kind of person that William Walters was.

The book she recommends is Educated: A Memoir, by Tara Westover.

Radio Curious is a half-hour, weekly, long-form interview program, now in it's 28th year. We interview people on a curiously wide variety of topics about life and ideas. Our website is If your station airs Radio Curious please let us know, we will add you to our list of syndicate stations. We also welcome questions, feedback and program ideas. Radio Curious 280 N. Oak St. Ukiah, Ca 95482. (707) 462-6541.

 An Orphan Train Survivor Download Program Podcast
44.1k 16bit, 128kpbs, mono, mp3
00:58:00 English 2018-07-24
 Ukiah, California
  View Script  00:29:00  128Kbps mp3
(27MB) Mono
73 Download File...