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 Post subject: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 8:58 pm 

NJ Museum of Transportation at Allaire, NJ seems like the best kept secret in railway preservation. Not only are they steam narrow gauge but they roster a curious cross-section of narrow gauge "ex-patriots" from all across the country, and in one case, from another part of the world.

Reading back issues of The Order Board, Allaire's newsletter, from the October 1972 issue comes an interesting article on their Irish Cavan and Leitrim Railway No. 3L, the "Lady Edith". How the engine came "across the drink" is interesting. It was saved by a consortium of New York area railroad enthusiasts--Edgar T. Mead, Jr., Oliver Jensen and Roger E.M. "Frimbo" Whitaker--who called themselves "the Lady Edith Society". They pooled their money and in 1959 shipped to the U.S. the Lady Edith, a second locomotive (unknown to this writer), a passenger carriage from the Cavan and Leitrum, and later they were joined by a goods van and a brake van from the West Claire Railway. First displayed at Pleasure Island Amusement Park in Boston, Massachusetts (I believe there was some association with Nelson Blount), the equipment was moved to Freehold, NJ, then to Allaire in 1965. She first steamed on June 16,1966. Is the "Lady" still serviceable?

Now for my twenty questions....does Allaire now own the Irish locomotive and cars or is it still owned by the "Lady Edith Society"? To my knowledge of the original society members only Jensen is still alive.

Also, how did the Tweetsie boxcar and D&RGW stock car come to join the collection at Allaire? I suspect Edgar Mead, the consumate narrow gauge buff had a hand to play in their acquisition, but I'm not sure.

Was Middletown & New Jersey (Rassmussen and company) and Empire State Rwy Museum "off-shoots" of the Allaire group? It seems they had common members between all three organizations.

Any information is appreciated.


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 9:46 pm 

> Reading back issues of The Order Board,
> Allaire's newsletter, from the October 1972
> issue comes an interesting article on their
> Irish Cavan and Leitrim Railway No. 3L, the
> "Lady Edith". How the engine came
> "across the drink" is interesting.
> It was saved by a consortium of New York
> area railroad enthusiasts--Edgar T. Mead,
> Jr., Oliver Jensen and Roger E.M.
> "Frimbo" Whitaker--who called
> themselves "the Lady Edith
> Society". They pooled their money and
> in 1959 shipped to the U.S. the Lady Edith,
> a second locomotive (unknown to this
> writer),

Kurt,

Not POSITIVE, but the odds are incredibly high that the "second loco" you are looking for is the former Cavan & Leitrim, ex-Great Southern Railway, nee-Tralee & Dingle 2-6-2T #5, which was brought over in 1959 to go to Edaville. Instead, it went to the Steamtown collection in 1961 (I don't need to tell you of the various overlaps between the groups), and remained as part of the Steamtown collection until 1986. In that year, it was purchased from the Steamtown Foundation and repatriated to Ireland by the Great Southern Railway Preservation Society, Ltd. It currently operates today on a restored section of the T&D between Tralee and Blennerville. I have not found a website specifically for the railway, but a search will pull up dozens of travel sites listing the railway, such as the one linked below.

Interestingly, all three overseas locomotives at Steamtown, with the exception of that little French vertical-boiler 0-4-0 still in Pennsylvania, have seen perhaps more service in their home countries than most of the US and Canadian locos at Steamtown have!

Tralee & Dingle #5
lner4472@bcpl.net


  
 
 Post subject: Allaire: worth a whole day
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 10:44 pm 

Kurt,

You are right about the NJ Museum of Transportation being quite an outfit. If they ever study my railroad psyche, take into account I grew up begging cab rides in a 2-6-2 chasing a Shay chasing an Irish 4-4-0 around a loop of 3? track.

The full history of the group is at:
http://www.njmt.org/longhistory.htm

Rather than rewrite it here, check out the link. Mr. Mead did a lot for the group and for many, many steamers.

These guys have built huge metal sheds the last few years to get equipment inside. They are on a very good path.

Besides the connections you stated, Jay Wulfson left Pine Creek to go start a little line in Vermont, now the Vermont Rail System.

All the best,

Rob

PS: Here?s a taste of the roster. They also have many CNJ and PRR buildings on site:

Steam locomotives (on site today)

3L Stephenson 1887 4-4-0T "Lady Edith" ex-Cavan & Leitrim Rwy, Ireland
6 Lima 1927 B32-2 Shay, ex-Ely-Thomas Lumber Co, WV
6 Baldwin 1914 2-8-0 ex-Quincy & Torch Lake RR, Michigan
9 Porter 1924 0-4-0T ex-Anaconda Copper Co, Perth Amboy NJ
26 Baldwin 1920 2-6-2 ex-Surry Sussex & Southampton Rwy, VA
46 Porter 1914 2-6-0 ex-Chiriqui Land Co, Panama
117 Vulcan 1925 0-4-0 ex-Carroll Park & Western RR Bloomsburg PA
- Cagney 1923 4-4-0 ex-several beachfront amusement parks

Diesel / gas locomotives (operating units on site)

1 Plymouth 1942 0-4-0 12 ton, ex-Haws Refractories, Pittsburgh PA
5 Plymouth 1930 0-4-0 11 ton, ex-Marcus Wright Sand Co, South River NJ
39 Gen Elec 1949 B-B 50 ton, ex-US Steel / Kobe Steel, Lorain OH
45 Gen Elec 1950 B-B 50 ton, ex-US Steel / Kobe Steel, Lorain OH
7751 Gen Elec 1942 0-4-0 25 ton, ex-US Army, Hawaii

Rolling stock (operating units on site)

5 Caboose 1955 built on dump car frame by Pine Creek RR
17 Excursion 1954 built on log car frame by Pine Creek RR
51C Brake Van 1897 ex-Cavan & Leitrim Rwy, Ireland
56 Box car 1920? ex-Singer Manufacturing Co, Newark, NJ
202C Goods Van ex-Cavan & Leitrim Rwy, Ireland
400 Excursion 1942 built on ex-US Navy steel flatcar by Pine Creek RR
502 Wooden coach 1902 ex-Newfoundland Railways, Canada
824 3-bay hopper 1925 ex-East Broad Top RR, PA
91155 Wooden caboose 1874 ex-Central RR of NJ

Plus many small work cars used in regular service for shop and track duties.



Ahead of the Torch
trains@robertjohndavis.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 10:55 pm 

Kurt:
First, thanks for the kind words about NJMT and the Pine Creek Railroad.

> Allaire in 1965. She first steamed on June
> 16,1966. Is the "Lady" still
> serviceable?

The Lady was serviceable up until just a few years ago when it became appsrent that the front flue sheet was too thin for safe operation. An $11K repair was put on hold when the State adopted Appendix C. The resulting UT found thin spots on the side sheets which are behind the frame plates, thus impossible to get to for inspection with out lifting the boiler off the chassis.

The Lady will be the third locomotive to get the full Ape C inspection and repair by our own R-Stamp shop. She will run.

> Now for my twenty questions....does Allaire
> now own the Irish locomotive and cars or is

NJMT owns the Lady Edith.

> Also, how did the Tweetsie boxcar and

Edgar Mead and one other person whose name escapes me paid to move the boxcar to NJMT.

> D&RGW stock car come to join the

The stock car fell to the Jersey elements many years ago. What is interesting is that Edgar Mead's son donated a D&RGW 3000 series boxcar to NJMT last year. Its in great shape and is stored indoors.

> Was Middletown & New Jersey (Rassmussen
> and company) and Empire State Rwy Museum
> "off-shoots" of the Allaire group?
> It seems they had common members between all
> three organizations.

Common members indeed but I am uncertain as to the true business ties myself.

> Any information is appreciated.

Look me up any time!

J.R. May
Chairman of the Board of Trustees
NJMT/Pine Creek RR

http://www.njmt.org
jrmay@njmt.org


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Allaire: worth a whole day
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 11:04 pm 

Rob:
Thanks for posting the operable list. There is so much more. Along those lines we are interested in thinning it out a bit. For example, we could be interested in leasing out our 25Ton Whitcomb to a needy group. It needs a full restoration. I would really like to find the right group to adopt the Tweetsy boxcar also. In the past we have leased out our EBT combine to FEBT and 2' gauge locomotives to various operations in Maine. We have now leased a 2' Plymouth to Fort Dix for a display and sold off two others.

The jewel of the collection has to be our PRR business car, #3999 "Trenton." Its rough, but complete.

J.R.

> Kurt,

> You are right about the NJ Museum of
> Transportation being quite an outfit. If
> they ever study my railroad psyche, take
> into account I grew up begging cab rides in
> a 2-6-2 chasing a Shay chasing an Irish
> 4-4-0 around a loop of 3? track.

> The full history of the group is at:
> http://www.njmt.org/longhistory.htm

> Rather than rewrite it here, check out the
> link. Mr. Mead did a lot for the group and
> for many, many steamers.

> These guys have built huge metal sheds the
> last few years to get equipment inside. They
> are on a very good path.

> Besides the connections you stated, Jay
> Wulfson left Pine Creek to go start a little
> line in Vermont, now the Vermont Rail
> System.

> All the best,

> Rob

> PS: Here?s a taste of the roster. They also
> have many CNJ and PRR buildings on site:

> Steam locomotives (on site today)

> 3L Stephenson 1887 4-4-0T "Lady
> Edith" ex-Cavan & Leitrim Rwy,
> Ireland
> 6 Lima 1927 B32-2 Shay, ex-Ely-Thomas Lumber
> Co, WV
> 6 Baldwin 1914 2-8-0 ex-Quincy & Torch
> Lake RR, Michigan
> 9 Porter 1924 0-4-0T ex-Anaconda Copper Co,
> Perth Amboy NJ
> 26 Baldwin 1920 2-6-2 ex-Surry Sussex &
> Southampton Rwy, VA
> 46 Porter 1914 2-6-0 ex-Chiriqui Land Co,
> Panama
> 117 Vulcan 1925 0-4-0 ex-Carroll Park &
> Western RR Bloomsburg PA
> - Cagney 1923 4-4-0 ex-several beachfront
> amusement parks

> Diesel / gas locomotives (operating units on
> site)

> 1 Plymouth 1942 0-4-0 12 ton, ex-Haws
> Refractories, Pittsburgh PA
> 5 Plymouth 1930 0-4-0 11 ton, ex-Marcus
> Wright Sand Co, South River NJ
> 39 Gen Elec 1949 B-B 50 ton, ex-US Steel /
> Kobe Steel, Lorain OH
> 45 Gen Elec 1950 B-B 50 ton, ex-US Steel /
> Kobe Steel, Lorain OH
> 7751 Gen Elec 1942 0-4-0 25 ton, ex-US Army,
> Hawaii

> Rolling stock (operating units on site)

> 5 Caboose 1955 built on dump car frame by
> Pine Creek RR
> 17 Excursion 1954 built on log car frame by
> Pine Creek RR
> 51C Brake Van 1897 ex-Cavan & Leitrim
> Rwy, Ireland
> 56 Box car 1920? ex-Singer Manufacturing Co,
> Newark, NJ
> 202C Goods Van ex-Cavan & Leitrim Rwy,
> Ireland
> 400 Excursion 1942 built on ex-US Navy steel
> flatcar by Pine Creek RR
> 502 Wooden coach 1902 ex-Newfoundland
> Railways, Canada
> 824 3-bay hopper 1925 ex-East Broad Top RR,
> PA
> 91155 Wooden caboose 1874 ex-Central RR of
> NJ

> Plus many small work cars used in regular
> service for shop and track duties.


http://www.njmt.org
jrmay@njmt.org


  
 
 Post subject: Pine Creek Alumni
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2002 11:19 pm 

> Kurt:
> First, thanks for the kind words about NJMT
> and the Pine Creek Railroad.

Count me in the list of Pine Creek Alumni. I have pictures of myself at the age of 8 in the cab of the Copper Creek #3. This was the Porter 0-4-0 that was used at Cowboy City, then went to Cooperstown. This was at the Rt. 9 location, next to Julia's Diner. I had written to Jay Wulfson asking to be an engineer on the Pine Creek. I received a reply from Kris Miller explaining I had to be at least 18 before I could train to be a fireman, but inviting me to come and be an "Honorary Engineer" for a day. This was in the summer of 1960; it happened to be the day the "Panama Mogul" arrived. If I remember correctly the fireman that day was Andy Morrison, who worked for the Cumbres & Toltec the year it opened. Since 1990 I have been the CMO at the Huckleberry RR in Flint, Michigan.

Martyhuck@aol.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 9:24 am 

> Not POSITIVE, but the odds are incredibly
> high that the "second loco" you
> are looking for is the former Cavan &
> Leitrim, ex-Great Southern Railway,
> nee-Tralee & Dingle 2-6-2T #5, which was
> brought over in 1959 to go to Edaville.

Yes, this is the second locomotive that Edgar Mead, et al brought over from Ireland.

> Instead, it went to the Steamtown collection
> in 1961 (I don't need to tell you of the
> various overlaps between the groups), and
> remained as part of the Steamtown collection
> until 1986. In that year, it was purchased
> from the Steamtown Foundation and
> repatriated to Ireland by the Great Southern
> Railway Preservation Society, Ltd.

Minor correction. Former Cavan & Leitrim 2-6-2T 5 wasn't owned by Steamtown. It was on loan from Edgar Mead. Ironically, 5 had a chance in 1986 to join former C&L 4-4-0T "Lady Edith" at the NJMT when Steamtown relocated to Scranton. Mr. Mead offered the locomotive to NJMT, but subsequently received an inquiry about the engine from the preservation society in Ireland. Being a class act, the NJMT stepped aside, and Mr. Mead instead donated the locomotive to the Irish group for return to its native home. BTW: Mr. Mead also owned former Ely-Thomas Lumber Shay 6 at the NJMT / Pine Creek RR.

Two early Pine Creek RR steam locomotives were former Raritan Sand & Gravel 0-4-0T's 1 and 3.

Baldwin-built Number 1 was the railroad's first locomotive. It had its saddletank removed and a tender was added. PCK 1 was sold to WED Enterprises for use at Disneyland in CA. There it was rebuilt into a 2-4-0 design based on the D&RG locomotive "Montezuma". PCK 1 became Santa Fe & Disneyland RR 4, the "Ernest S. Marsh".

Porter-built Number 3 kept its saddletank, but had a four wheel tender added. It served as power on the Copper Creek RR (these guys sure loved this "creek thing"!)--a short-lived operation at the old Cowboy City western-theme park in NJ. Number 3 went to the Leatherstocking Line tourist operation at Cooperstown, NY. I believe it next passed through the Tweetsie RR shop (finally losing its saddletank) and went to the International Toy Train Museum in Orlando, FL where it operated on a loop of track. Finally the nomadic 3 went to its latest home at the Agrirama Museum at Tifton, GA.

Regards,
Jim Robinson


  
 
 Post subject: Pine Creek 3
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 10:05 am 

> Porter-built Number 3 kept its saddletank,
> but had a four wheel tender added. It served
> as power on the Copper Creek RR. at Cowboy City

Correction, make that Cranberry Creek RR at Cowboy City.

See below link for a photo of 0-4-0 3 while at the toy train museum in FL (from steamlocomotive.com)

Regards,
Jim Robinson


ex-Pine Creek 0-4-0 3


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 11:55 am 

The NJMT is still doing good things for other museums. They are leasing a couple of 24" gauge Diesels to the Maine Narrow Gauge Museum in
Portland.

Does anybody know haw they came to have a coach or combine from the East Broadtop RR ?

Ted

ted_miles@nps.gov


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Lady Edith Society and Edgar T. Mead, Jr.
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:00 pm 

> Does anybody know haw they came to have a
> coach or combine from the East Broadtop RR ?

Ted,
Pine Creek RR, Inc bought the car in 1956 and moved it to NJ in 1959. Its a combine, #16. I'd have to rummage through our files to see who owned it prior to PCKRR. It is now leased to FEBT but kept indoors at NJMT until they come and get it. Its in relatively good shape and sitting on a fancy pair of Irish trucks.
J.R.


http://www.njmt.org
jrmay@njmt.org


  
 
 Post subject: Photo of 3 today @ Agrirama
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 1:48 pm 

Found this side view (see below link) of ex-Pine Creek 0-4-0 3 operating at its present home at the Agrirama Museum at Tifton, GA. Also learned that 3 had went from the Busch Woodlands Museum's "Leatherstocking Line" railroad at Cooperstown, NY to the Great Escape Fun Park at Lake George, NY. In the process, 3 received a new boiler. The locomotive went to the toy train museum in Orlando, FL (via the Tweetsie RR's shops) in 1990. It's been running at the Agrirama Museum since about 1995.

Regards,
Jim Robinson


Pine Creek 0-4-0 3 today @ Agrirama


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Pine Creek 3
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 2:37 pm 

> Correction, make that Cranberry Creek RR at
> Cowboy City.
The name of the corporation that was formed to run the railroad at Cowboy City was Cranberry Creek, but all the photos I've seen of the no.3 show it lettered Copper Creek.


Martyhuck@aol.com


  
 
 Post subject: Silly question, but.............
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 5:02 pm 

........... Just speculating:

If/when Castro's Iron Curtain falls, and all the narrow-gauge operations and museums get their pick of dozens or even hundreds of surviving 36" steamers now in Cuba for repatriation and rebuilding into whatever one wishes to replicate or preserve(name your favorite unpreserved loco--an EBT 2-6-0 or 2-8-0, anyone?)..........

Would Pine Creek/NJMT be ready to acquire a couple of the surplus Cuban steamers for operation, and then, having enough equipment on hand, would they then be willing to let the other C&L steamer return home to Ireland, along with its rolling stock?

NJMT is a great home, don't get me wrong..... but it's still like operating a Maine two-footer in Scotland or running a D&RGW 2-8-2 in Florida.

lner4472@bcpl.net


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Silly question, but.............
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 8:14 pm 

Not an expert but from reports I have heard from friends who have been to Cuba I don't believe there is a lot of 3 foot gage down there. Besides, what would the Cubans use to move the cut cane? And, given the loose state of Cuban boilermaking, would it not be easier to simply repair our own?

Dave

irondave@bellsouth.net


  
 
 Post subject: More on Cuban Steam
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2002 11:38 pm 

> Not an expert but from reports I have heard
> from friends who have been to Cuba I don't
> believe there is a lot of 3 foot gage down
> there. Besides, what would the Cubans use to
> move the cut cane? And, given the loose
> state of Cuban boilermaking, would it not be
> easier to simply repair our own?

*smacks face with open palm in frustration*

Long story short: RyPN had an article on Cuban steam a while back; maybe I should badger Hume to repost it. To wit: There are DOZENS of 36" gauge steamers in Cuba (I have to itemize a list every time I look them up and confirm what is scrapped, what is in pieces, and what is running, but it could be as high as 100 or more operable locos), most built by Baldwin Locomotive Works, Alco, and Vulcan for Cuban companies from the 1900s to the 1930s and only actually in use a couple months a year at most.

If/when Papa Castro kicks the bucket, assuming that Cubans see the trees for the forest and come to their collective senses, the sugar will end up being hauled by secondhand trucks from Europe and the U.S. The rail lines will be history. Within one year or less, all the steam locomotives in Cuba will become museum pieces, scrap iron, or sold to Yankees in the USA.

The fitness of the boilers is indeed a valid question. There have already been a couple fatal boiler explosions in Cuba recently. My brash assumption, however, is that locomotives will be purchased as operating frames and running gears for people like the Maine and Colorado narrow-gaugers, Tweetsie, the Huckleberry RR, Allaire, FEBT, etc. to mount new (welded) boilers upon in the pursuit of functionally operable replicas of extinct locos or as replacements for the vintage stuff. (No need to fire up the EBT or original D&RGW Mikados if you have a replica to wear out, right?)


LOTS of Cuban Steam
lner4472@bcpl.net


  
 
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