Author Topic: A few stories ...  (Read 114139 times)

James Patten

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #375 on: October 21, 2016, 10:55:06 PM »
This is from Alan Pease, the birthday boy on Saturday.  He sent us an email with some photos.  I thought that I would share.

I was the target of the surprise visit to the Museum last Saturday. My wife Marnie and I had a superb time at the Museum and riding the train. I grew up on Water Street in Wiscasset and became very familiar with the 2-footer rails and terminal with its Roundhouse, turntable, locomotives, and rail cars, the latter of which were housed in a falling down building of great length. I have only one recollection of seeing the train in operation as it crossed the trestle in front of our house. Never did I ride the train until last Saturday! What a thrill!

I did find a few photographs of the railroad bed, etc. If you do not have them already, I have attached them to this email.

Al Pease

This is an aerial photo of Wiscasset and it shows the WWFRy line from the docks to the Roundhouse, the latter of which is somehow blackened.

Note: I think that this was taken in the 60s or 70s.  Note the old road bridge.  And the water treatment plant hasn't been built yet.  James.

These are other views of the track crossing in Wiscasset, this time facing in a southerly direction. This photo shows a small red arrow pointing to the house in which I grew up.


Forgot to include this photo showing the railroad yard at Wiscasset (I haven't included it - it's the picture of the upper yard after abandonment from the south yard throat - James).  My Dad took me to this site several times. On one of our visits I remember seeing a locomotive in front of the roundhouse. The elementary school and academy were located just up the hill.

I wonder if there is any record of the sale of the locomotives, which must happened before the start of WW II. During WW II, it was rumored locally that at least one of the WWFRy locomotives was sold to the Japanese.

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #376 on: October 22, 2016, 12:49:01 AM »
We're glad Mr. Pease had a nice time at Sheepscot, the group seemed to enjoy the party in the caboose and train ride.  There were so many guests that we added coach 3 for their use.

Thanks for posting the photos James.  The aerial image was taken prior to 1966 when the Wiscasset Grain building burned.  It's the large red building on the far side of the Rt. 1 bridge that sits between the shore and WW&F trestlework.  My neighbor, Wayne Averill told me about the day the store burned.  Wiscasset Grain became Ames Supply and is still in business on Rt. 1 south of Wiscasset.

James Patten

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #377 on: October 22, 2016, 01:35:59 AM »
Interesting to look at the road bridge - it rises up a bit to cross the swing bridge.  I don't recall Rt 1 doing that - I recall it being level all the way across.  Maybe the State rebuilt it between that picture and what I remember.

It sure was an adventure crossing that bridge.  There were no breakdown lanes, only two relatively narrow lanes.  I'm sure the guard rails wouldn't hold back much if there had been a crash into them.  There was only a couple of feet between you and the water.

Bill Sample

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #378 on: October 22, 2016, 04:23:59 PM »
Very interesting photo.  As my first visit to the area (when I was 15) was during a family vacation drive from western Mass. to a campground near Somesville ME in 1965, this confirms my memories of the buildings on both sides of the Wiscasset end of the US 1 bridge and "that strange long abandoned pier" that I later found out was the WW&F trestle.  Little did I know then how familiar I'd get with the area 30 plus years later!

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #379 on: November 03, 2016, 12:14:02 PM »
Story # 138 - Two Rivers Steam Special

Last Sunday Cindy and I rode the Mass. Bay RRE excursion that ran on the P&W and Valley Railroad.  The train left Worcester and ran down the P&W to Groton then traveled on the Amtrak line to Old Saybrook where we entered the wye for Valley line, changing the diesels for steam power.  We ran behind steam up through Essex past Goodspeeds where the locomotive ran around the train.  Before starting the return trip the engine pushed our train to the end of in-service track past milepost 13.  Much of the return trip was in darkness but the down train offered nice views of Auburn, Putnam, Plainfield, Norwich and the Submarine Base near Groton.  There were beautiful views of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy across the river.  The Valley crew took over at Old Saybrook and gave us a nice ride which included photo run-bys at Chester.  We rode in the parlor /obs car New Englander built by Pullman Standard in 1948.  When we boarded in Worcester we saw some familiar faces in our car, there were two WW&F members riding with us and a third member boarded at Putnam.  One of the Mass Bay car attendants noted our WW&F hats and jackets and stated that he had been following the turntable project on line and planned on riding next year.  There was conversation about the latest progress at Sheepscot during the trip and two people in our car were interested enough to sign up for our January steam trips.  Lunch was served on the train and afterward we reached the Valley Railroad.  The Valley crew came on and greeted passengers in each car.  When the conductor came back to the parlor car he welcomed us and and described our steam power "New Haven" 3025.  When he noticed our WW&F hats he said with a smile "Oh, some Maine Two-Foot people are here".   We asked if he had ever ridden the narrow gauge and he replied "a number of times, I'm a life member".

Ed Lecuyer

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #380 on: November 03, 2016, 01:59:16 PM »
I was on the Saturday Mass Bay trip, also riding in the New Englander, and had similar experiences wearing my WW&F shirt. Was Dave your conductor, Stewart? I talked with him a few times but he never picked up on the WW&F. Dave was very proud of the Valley and all they have done - as well they should. They've come a long way since I last visited about 10 years ago.
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Mike Fox

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #381 on: November 03, 2016, 02:28:00 PM »
I visited the Valley about 5 or 6 years ago. That is where both the engineer duck and the idea for ROW MOW 1 came from. I thought it was a first class operation then.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2016, 02:33:34 PM by Mike Fox »
Mike
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Carl Soderstrom

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #382 on: November 04, 2016, 04:21:43 AM »
I used to work in Putnam 40 YA and still have friends in Woodstock.
I wonder if the member that boarded there might have mutual friends?


Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #383 on: December 11, 2016, 07:27:38 PM »
Story #139 - Letters

Visitors often tell us what they think of the museum and train ride.   The train and gift shop crews are the ones who usually hear the comments but some people still write letters for the general membership to see.  The following letter arrived last month, it's a good example of what we hear on many weekends.

Dear W. W. & F,

     Thanks for an exciting first time visit the weekend of October 8th.  I enjoyed meeting so many volunteers including Dana, Susan and her son Rider, Don and several others.  Getting to photograph the building of the turntable and machine shop activities was awesome to say the least.  And thanks to the engine crew for giving me a cab ride.

Happy Rails,

Bonnie Adams
« Last Edit: December 11, 2016, 11:54:37 PM by Stewart "Start" Rhine »

Mike Fox

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #384 on: December 11, 2016, 11:26:14 PM »
I often get these little notes on donation slips and included seperately (like this one) with the donations. I enjoy reading every one and like to bring them down to share. Maybe someday we could have a cork board in the house to collect these on.
Mike
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Bill Baskerville

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #385 on: December 12, 2016, 04:38:36 AM »
Perhaps after being posted for a month or two, they could be collected in a scrap book in the archive room.

Steve Zuppa

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #386 on: December 19, 2016, 03:46:55 PM »
Last week, during our Victorian Christmas prep, our neighbor, W&Q Board Member and town selectman Doug Baston and his wife Barbara stopped by the Museum on their daily walk. After some chit-chat about our expectations for the event, Doug mentioned that he had received an email from a friend in St John, New Brunswick, bringing to his attention an article in the St John Telegraph-Journal. The author had apparently attended last year's VC and urged his readers to make the 500 mile round trip as our celebration would justify the effort required to attend.  We were quite flattered at the international publicity but thought no more of it.

When I saw them on Saturday, I mentioned the conversation to Santa and Mrs. Clause. During the course of the day, Mrs. Clause, as is her wont, would ask people where they were from. In the early afternoon, Santa heard one woman, there with her family, say that she was from St John,NB. He then asked her if she had seen the newspaper article and she affirmed that she had and that was what prompted her to make the trip. She assured Santa that it really is a wonderful event that the volunteers host.  

The weather may have brought down our numbers this year but for those who were there, including our new friends from St John, it was a magical day.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2016, 09:29:57 PM by Steve Zuppa »

Dave Buczkowski

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #387 on: December 19, 2016, 05:50:03 PM »
After the last train I was looking through the guest book and saw St. John, NB in the address column. I just figured they were visiting relatives locally. Wow! That was an expensive "free" train ride for those nice folks.

Benjamin Campbell

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #388 on: December 19, 2016, 11:15:27 PM »
The aerial photo at the top of this page is fantastic. Am I seeing things or is there a small building just north of the WW&F MCRR diamond? Looks like the MCRR may have relocated their section house down there. If so - must have been fairly short lived.

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #389 on: August 13, 2017, 08:49:14 PM »
Story #141 - Reunion

During the World War I encampment this weekend, a special evening photo shoot was held on Saturday.  Dana Deering was on the train that traveled to Alna Center to assist with the photo shoot featuring the soldiers and their camp.  As the crew and soldiers gathered next to the train, conversations began as to the scenes to be set up including the roll call, presentation of the American flag to the unit commander and field packs and equipment being stowed in the boxcar.  I was watching all of this going on when I heard Dana say "Corey?" to one of the soldiers.  A tall soldier turned and replied "hey, Dana Deering"!  The two said "it's been a long time" and gave each other a hug.  It turns out that the two had known each other from a Civil War re-enactors group years ago.  Commemorating The Great War brought them back together after all that time.