The Halton County Radial Railway and the OERHA was formed in 1953 by a group of men who wanted to save Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) streetcar 1326 from being sent to the scrap yard. After the donation of this streetcar, the dream grew. Land that used to be a part of the Toronto Suburban Railway in Nassagaweya Township was acquired, and subsequently, a number of other street and radial cars were eventually rescued. The museum's grand opening to the public took place in 1972.
Since the beginning, the vision of the HCRR was to inform, educate and inspire the public about the electric railway history of Ontario and Canada. Today, the museum displays and operates a variety of historic streetcars, radial cars and work cars, and maintains a collection of photographs, memorabilia and archival materials. The oldest rail car in the collection dates from the late 1800s.