Author Topic: A few stories ...  (Read 157616 times)

Ed Lecuyer

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #390 on: August 14, 2017, 01:19:15 PM »
That's quite a reunion.
I suppose they hadn't seen each other in about 50 years.
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Wayne Laepple

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #391 on: August 18, 2017, 09:23:05 PM »
Yesterday I went to the Rough & Tumble Engineers annual reunion at Kinzer, Pa. I parked in the parking field and climbed aboard the shuttle wagon. A man and woman sat down next to me, and the guy noticed my WW&F T-shirt. "I was just there this past weekend," he said. "It's really a great place." I replied, "I was there, too, and i know it's a great place."

Later in the day, as I was walking around looking at the various interesting things there are to see, a woman tapped me on the shoulder. I stopped walking, and she came around in front of me to read my shirt. "Are you from Maine?" she asked. "I'm from Bristol." I told her I wasn't but that I am a regular visitor. She said she hadn't been "home" in a couple of years, but she really wanted to get back there. She went on to say that her folks had moved to New Jersey for work when she was a teenager, but they returned to Maine every year. After her dad retired, the family moved back to Maine, but after one winter, they decided to move back to New Jersey.

James Patten

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #392 on: August 24, 2017, 10:26:10 PM »
Having been involved at the Museum for more than 20 years, I meet a lot of people, many more than once.  So whenever I go places, if I see someone that looks familiar I assume that I must have met them at the Museum at one point or another.

Today I took Amtrak Downeaster trains 682 and 683 to Boston and return, because the Amtrak Great Dome car is on for the next month.  I was wearing my (well-worn and faded, paint speckled) WW&F hat.  Waiting for the train to arrive at the Brunswick platform, I noticed a fellow who looked a little familiar.  He noticed my hat, and mentioned he had been at the picnic a couple of weeks ago.  We both sat for a time in the dome.  I don't think we've ever conversed before, so I don't have his name.

On the way back, the Train Riders Northeast train host saw my hat and asked if I was involved.  When I told him yes, he mentioned he had been there for the Mass Bay RRE February photo trains, and asked if I was there.  I said I was, but at that point couldn't recall what I had done.  Later I remembered I was conductor for one of the trains, so I mentioned it to him and he mentioned he had done the write up in their newsletter for it.

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #393 on: August 28, 2017, 11:13:30 PM »
Story #144 - Wisdom

This is the time of year when we see visitors that have been to the museum multiple times.  It's nice to see these families every Summer.  Showing them the latest projects and spending time talking with the parents and kids is a treat.  Sometimes the kids are much taller like one family that has been to Sheepscot each Summer for the last 16 years.  We recognized them as they walked over from the parking lot and the son who is 15 is almost 6' tall.  They took a train ride and then spent an hour looking around the Sheepscot campus.  A handcar ride was offered and the 13 year old daughter really enjoyed it.  Afterward we walked up to the car barn.  As we walked out the north door the son asked to see the wedding section house.  We walked up to the building and the daughter got there first so I handed her my keys and asked if she wanted to unlock the door.  She said "yes!" and she handled the switchlock like a boss.  We slid the door open and walked inside where I showed her the other handcar.  She said "you can't have too many handcars".  Her parents laughed a little at her comment and I replied " I like the way you think" she got a big smile on her face and came right back with "I like the way I think too".

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #394 on: September 12, 2017, 10:49:31 PM »
Story #145 - "Bee"

Last Sunday a visitor came to ride the WW&F 87 years after her last trip.  Blanche "Bee" Plumstead-King came to ride the 3 o'clock train with 6 of her family members.  Bee, born in 1924, grew up in Wiscasset.  She told us of her one trip on the WW&F to visit her uncle in Palermo in the Summer of 1930.  She didn't recall much about the ride other than the smell of fresh cut hay as the train traveled through farm fields.  We interviewed Bee as she rode the train up to ToM and she noted that she started riding the Maine Central on a regular basis when she went to school at the Lincoln Academy in Newcastle.  She told us that the fare for a round trip in the mid 1930's was 15 cents.  After the ride she said that she enjoyed the trip and we asked to take photos of her.  She posed on the platform holding her ticket which she noted "it's the first WW&F ticket I've bought since my father purchased the last one in 1930".

The photo of Bee and her ticket is posted on the museum's Facebook page. 

Ted Miles

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #395 on: September 15, 2017, 12:23:05 AM »
Stewart,
             I am as I mentioned up above, one of the many people you have shown around the museum on a weekday. Now I have read your stories about the interesting people you have shown around. Thank you so much!
      I work at the Western Railway Museum and do a lot of the same things. I also enjoy the British visitors who seem to have such a feel for heritage operations, including two-foot operations. I had a visitor come on my tour about a month ago wearing a WW&F hat; and asked if he worked at the museum, he said he had visited the museum. So I showed him through our shop with the broad gauge electrical equipment.

Ted Miles, WW&F Life Member

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #396 on: September 18, 2017, 03:47:15 PM »
Story #146 - Spoof

Last week museum volunteers spent hours getting things ready for the new shop floor and the insulation of the freight house floor.  The freight house job required clearing out everything from underneath the building for the contractors to have full room to work.  As things were being pulled out into the sunlight a few unusual items were found.  One was a nearly full-sized coffin made of plywood.  The coffin was from a Halloween display some 15+ years ago and no one remembered when it was hidden under the freight house.  Close inspection revealed part of a plastic skeleton inside.  There was also a mouse nest and part of the bottom was rotten.  It was decided that the coffin should go to the dump with the other rotten wood that was removed. 

Well, everything was loaded into the railroad's pickup and the coffin was on top.  A certain volunteer ... we'll call him "Gus" took off with the junk wood and coffin in the back.  He had to watch the load in back as he drove on the rough part of the West Alna Road.  He was half way to the dump when he looked back to check the load.  He noticed a car following as he hit a bump and the coffin bounced.  Then he watched as the lid opened up a little and one of the plastic hands came out.  He slowed down a bit looked again and noticed that the driver was on her cell phone.  At that point he realized that the person following was the mother of one of the local newspaper reporters.  The road smoothed out and he hit the gas to get some distance from the following vehicle.  He made it to the dump and the coffin was the first thing into the wood bin.  Driving back out, he didn't see the car that followed him ... and he was some glad that the truck never got lettered "WW&F Railway".           

John Kokas

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #397 on: December 16, 2017, 01:17:18 PM »
I was out Christmas shopping a couple of days ago and wearing my WW&F hat.  In the mall a woman stopped me and asked if I was from Maine.  I told her that I was a native Pennsylvanian but lived in Maine for over a year and that I was a member of the rail museum.  She asked if this was the railroad that ran from Wiscasset which I replied that it was indeed.  Her eyes widened and told me her Grandparents spoke of riding the line back when they were children to go camping by a big lake.  She couldn't remember which lake but I will assume that it was China Lake.  I told her how we were rebuilding the line and how to find us on Facebook.  She was delighted and said the family goes to Maine every summer and will make a point of stopping by and riding.
Moxie Bootlegger

James Patten

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #398 on: January 03, 2018, 01:26:31 AM »
This afternoon I had to visit my doctor's office, and met with one I hadn't met yet.  He asked me what I did, so I told him about work and also that I volunteered for the WW&F.  He got mildly excited and jumped up and left the room, coming back with the current Downeast magazine.  I pointed out the picture that Matthew Malkiewicz took and told him that was us.

Jeff Schumaker

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #399 on: January 03, 2018, 03:23:29 PM »
This afternoon I had to visit my doctor's office, and met with one I hadn't met yet.  He asked me what I did, so I told him about work and also that I volunteered for the WW&F.  He got mildly excited and jumped up and left the room, coming back with the current Downeast magazine.  I pointed out the picture that Matthew Malkiewicz took and told him that was us.

Has he visited the museum?

Jeff S.
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James Patten

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #400 on: January 03, 2018, 04:58:54 PM »
I don't believe so.  He mentioned his son was very much into trains when he was younger and now not so much, and had ridden plenty of trains when he was interested.

Joe Fox

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #401 on: June 18, 2018, 04:43:54 PM »
Last week I met a lady who once rode the train to Wiscasset in 32 or 33 she said. Although she couldn't remember much of the ride, she was thrilled to be able to relive those days once more. She remembered family tales of her folks riding the train to go to make the connection to points south such as Portland and Boston. It is neat to hear of these visitors and get a chance to talk to them. Her and her family enjoyed the train, and she was truely thrilled she was able to share the experience with her great grandkids. It was her second time riding on the restored railway.
Track laborer, roadmaster, general laborer, and much more.

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #402 on: June 28, 2018, 11:41:10 AM »
Last Saturday a man brought his young daughter to the museum for a train ride.  They came into the gift shop and looked around but when they came to the counter to purchase tickets, the man realized that he didn't have his wallet.  He apologized and said "we will come back another day".  Not wanting to disappoint the daughter, the quick thinking gift shop crew told them "that's ok, we'll give you two tickets for a ride today and you can send us the fare when you get a chance".  Both father and daughter thanked the gift shop crew and boarded the train.  Upon their return to Sheepscot they told the train crew that it was a beautiful ride and they would tell their friends about the railroad.


Yesterday we received a thank you card from the fellow along with a check covering the fare plus a good sized donation.   

Fred Morse

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #403 on: June 28, 2018, 01:15:02 PM »
It always pays to be nice to people.

Benjamin Richards

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Re: A few stories ...
« Reply #404 on: September 17, 2018, 05:44:24 PM »
Usually my family makes the annual "In-Laws World Tour of Mid-coast Maine" in August, but this year we came up in early June on account of our second child who was due in August. We rode one of the Sunday trains, in the coach with the bench seats. "A good time was had by all."

Fast-forward a month, to my annual birthday outing at Texas Roadhouse. As we waited for our table, my two-year-old exclaimed, "We're riding on the train!" After a few moments of puzzling (and a few more proclamations to the same effect), it hit me. The long, narrow waiting area, with its wooden bench seats along both walls and large windows down the entire length, looked an awful lot like the inside of the coach we had ridden a month before!

I tell ya, nothing gets past a toddler.  :o