In 1936, the Santa Fe began operation of the Chief. Then, from 1937 through 1958, The Super Chief became the flagship train between Chicago and Los Angeles, and was the first diesel powered, stainless steel, all Pullman train in the United States. For this train, the Santa Fe bought cars from Budd in 1937. This train became known as the “Train of the Stars.”. It was originally an all first-class train, but later was combined with the El Capitan and carried coaches. The Navajo observation car was built by Budd and contains three compartments, two drawing rooms, one bedroom and the round-end observation lounge. The car was beautifully decorated in Indian sand paintings with Navajo blanket upholstery. After World War Two, the car was modified and used as a backup.
The drumhead on the back of the car is a replica of the original. The car was donated to National Railway Historical Society Intermountain Chapter on April first, 1966, and was used on excursions out of Denver. It was moved to the museum in May of 1971 and ownership was transferred to the Museum in 2006. The National Railway Historical Society began, but never completed, a renovation of the car, and it exists in that partially-renovated state today.