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Author Topic: A few stories ...  (Read 106378 times)
Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #360 on: August 08, 2016, 01:39:38 PM »

Hi Steve and Philip, Thanks for the comments. 

We put the story up because there will be a special all original WW&F train operated during the Annual Picnic.  The mixed train will have box car 309, flatcar 118 and coach 3 as the consist.  Flat 118 will have the shingle mill machinery as a load.  This will be the first time in many decades that this type of freight has been carried on the WW&F.   
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Wayne Laepple
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« Reply #361 on: August 08, 2016, 03:22:36 PM »

That's a great story, Stewart. If nothing else, it sets a precedent for unloading or loading freight from the main line. As for cars of lumber wandering around the country, that is still done to a certain extent today. Mills on the west coast load cars and bill them to a broker in Chicago. The hope is that by the time they reach there, a buyer will have been found and the car can be re-billed to the consignee. If not, the broker gets stuck paying daily demurrage or storage charges until a buyer is found. The system must work pretty well, as I haven't heard of many brokers paying for storage.
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Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #362 on: August 08, 2016, 05:04:37 PM »

Thanks Wayne,

As a post script,  I just saw Tom Albee at the Alna Store and told him about loading the shingle mill on the flatcar.  He  said "well, sounds like you're re-creating the story".  I told him that the story of his grandfather's adventure is one of the reasons we put the mill on the car.  Later he drove down to Sheepscot where I showed him flatcar 118 in the car barn.  He said "the mill looks good on there, can't wait to see it going along the edge of my field".  With a smile he added "I hope you're not going to unload it at Alna Center".
« Last Edit: August 09, 2016, 12:33:21 AM by Stewart "Start" Rhine » Logged
Pete "Cosmo" Barrington
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« Reply #363 on: August 14, 2016, 06:12:15 AM »

Stuart,
I do SO look forward to the day when you will be relating stories regarding the orchard I plan to start on up the line someplace.  Wink
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Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #364 on: August 15, 2016, 03:27:51 PM »

Story #132   Hope -

I ran the railcar for a number of trips during the Annual Picnic last weekend.  For most of the runs, RC4 was staged at the south end of the mainline to be ready to follow the steam train by 5 minutes.  One trip last Saturday I had just backed down to the end of track when a family of 5 approached with tickets for a ride.  I invited them in and asked where they were from and the grandmother said they were up from Virginia.  The steam train left the yard and we sat there waiting while I gave the group a short history of Model T railcars in Maine.  As we neared our departure time, the band (Bitter Brew) who was in the south end of bay 1 started playing "I'll Fly Away".  We listened for a few seconds and then the grandmother started singing along and then her daughter joined in perfect harmony.  Before you knew it the whole car was singing which continued as we eased out of the station and up past the water tank.  Our song ended and I told the grandmother that I enjoyed hearing her voice.  I asked if she ever did any chorus or theater and she laughed a little.  She replied "I was in the USO years ago and sang with the troupe".  At that point I wanted to know more and asked where she traveled.  She said "back in the 1960's we toured through parts of Europe and Southeast Asia"  I replied that it must have been quite an experience and she said "it was demanding living out of a suitcase but wonderful seeing so many of our people serving in the armed services, they loved our shows". She added "one Summer we had a bigger show when I worked with Bob Hope".  She added "he was so nice to work with".
« Last Edit: September 28, 2016, 02:43:44 PM by Stewart "Start" Rhine » Logged
Wayne Laepple
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« Reply #365 on: August 15, 2016, 03:55:34 PM »

While doing a bunch of things in western Pennsylvania over the weekend, I dropped by the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum near Washington, Pa. I was wearing one of my WW&F T-shirts. At one point, a museum member noticed the shirt and said to me, "WW&F -- well, we could put two of your railroad inside ours with some room left over!" The PTM line is to "Pennsylvania Broad Gauge" which is 5 feet 2-1/2 inches, so he was correct.
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Paul Uhland
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« Reply #366 on: August 15, 2016, 04:43:01 PM »

Stewart...Love your RC4 story.
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Paul Uhland
Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #367 on: August 16, 2016, 12:06:47 AM »

Thanks Paul, 

It was an honor meeting someone who served with the USO and shared the stage with Bob Hope.  Just another example of some of the interesting people who visit the WW&F.
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John Kokas
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« Reply #368 on: August 16, 2016, 12:20:22 AM »

Bob Hope, now there was a CLASS ACT.........
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Craig "Red" Heun
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« Reply #369 on: August 16, 2016, 12:35:21 AM »

Thanks for the memories Cheesy
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Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #370 on: September 06, 2016, 02:11:09 PM »

Story #134   Convention -

The National Narrow Gauge Convention is being held in Augusta this week and we have been busy at Sheepscot touring guests and running trains.  There were about 60 visitors yesterday (Labor Day), many with the convention but some not.  The convention attendees are interesting to meet and speak with as some have been to narrow gauge lines in other parts of the world.  A nice surprise came from two non-convention visitors.  The first fellow, a man by the name of Edwards came into the gift shop for train tickets and got to talking with our sales clerk Cindy.  He noted that he liked the Maine Two-Footers and had ridden the Bridgton line in 1940.  He added that it was his first visit to the WW&F and was looking forward to riding the train.  The second visitor was a quiet man who rode in the caboose of the freight train, enjoying the ride with his wife.  We were talking to two visitors from England and the subject of Edaville came up.  After a minute or two discussing the "old" Edaville and it's operation, the American visitor joined the conversation.  We noticed that he knew quite a bit about the Edaville of the 1940's and '50's and asked him if he had worked there or visited back then.  He said "no, we have only been there a couple of times but my father's cousin got it started."  We asked who his cousin was and he replied "Ellis Atwood".  Then he added "my last name is Atwood".
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Stewart "Start" Rhine
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« Reply #371 on: September 30, 2016, 09:18:11 PM »

Story #135   Dividend -

Last Wednesday a group from the UK was scheduled to come for a tour of the Sheepscot shops at 3:00 PM.  Some volunteers worked on the turntable's spider wheel rail while we waited for the group to arrive.  Around 2:30 a sedan pulled in and one of the pasengers asked us if they could look around.  We heard what sounded like a British accent and asked "are you the people from the UK?"  One of the passengers laughed and replied "no, but would you mind touring a group from Australia?"  We said "oh, sorry.  We would be happy to show you around".  We gave them a tour and found out that they had heard about the WW&F through some friends who attended the Nation Narrow Gauge convention. 

As the Aussies left they passed the four vehicles coming down Cross Road bringing the UK tour people.  We greeted the next group of 11 people and started another tour.  As we spoke with them we heard that some had seen photos and information about the WW&F in on-line posts about the NNGC and that one fellow was a WW&F member.   
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Ed Lecuyer
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« Reply #372 on: October 11, 2016, 03:50:26 PM »

With a tear in my eye, too...

I had the privilege of helping close out the convention week on train crew Friday-Sunday. What was unexpected on Sunday was not the number of visitors from the convention, but the number that had came back just to see and experience the railroad again. Of course, many were amazed by the progress on the turntable since their last visit, but most just wanted to have another look at/ride behind/picture of #9.

At the end of the day, I struck up a conversation with a visitor who had come from a long way. "I've waited my whole life to see this engine under steam" he said with a tear in his eye and a broad smile on his face. I replied that a lot of people, many who did not live to see this moment, made the restoration possible and that it was our honor to be the custodian of such a tangible piece of history.

As he departed, I walked back towards the station where #9 had dumped its fire after nine days of continuous service (something that she had not seen since the 1930s.) While I am keenly aware that #9 is an inanimate object, any railroader will tell you that every steam engine has a personality. It has also been said that the steam locomotive is the closest thing to a living creature that humans have ever created.

"Thanks #9", I said to myself as I walked by. "You made a lot of people very happy this week."

In my soul, I heard a distinct and very real reply:
"Thank you Alice, Harry, and so many others. You made a lot of people very happy this week."
 
« Last Edit: October 11, 2016, 05:54:01 PM by Ed Lecuyer » Logged

Ed Lecuyer
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Paul Uhland
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« Reply #373 on: October 11, 2016, 05:47:36 PM »

Superb.   Smiley
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Paul Uhland
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« Reply #374 on: October 11, 2016, 06:10:05 PM »

This is one of many reasons why the museum, this one in particular, entice me to want to do something better with my life rather than a 40 hour/week mundane job working for someone else with nothing really to show for it. I've done my duty to king and country, and it nearly cost me my life, I have seen and been to many different places, but the best times I have had in my life with the most personal satisfaction is volunteering for others (in my church growing up) and most recently at a different RR museum in Hawaii. I know that my time and mechanical talent can make someone else's trip to see living history, and I guess that is what I am really seeking, that smile on someone's face seeing something that they love working, breathing and moving. Trust me, if I could walk away from my job right now and move up there to give my time freely to a better cause supporting the museum, I would be there next week. I have 4.5 more years until I could do that, once my daughter graduates high school. That would be the ultimate 50th birthday gift to myself, live out my dream.

Rob
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