This was really a bad day. The company I worked for went out of business, I lost my job, there aren't many openings for people with my particular skills, my former customers are all mad at me.... it's a good thing Prohibition is over. But better yet, the bad parts are all make believe.
What isn't make believe is that we had a four car train of wood CA&E cars operating again. There were no problems, apart from a few dewirements.
And we had a good crowd of visitors. Most of the time, we had three cars open, and for the final trip, all four cars were in use.
We were busy enough that I didn't get the obligatory picture of the crew. Jim West was the motorman, Larry Stone the conductor, and Frank and I were trainmen. By now you should know what we all look like.
And perhaps for the first time in 59 years, we had passengers playing cards on a CA&E train, using the table I made recently to fit the brackets in the 36. A good time was had by all, indeed!
This looks just like Wheaton to me. All that's missing is the "Fountain Lunch" sign. The 409, 431, and 460 were also operating today, displaying a complete history of CA&E car design. Seven cars from seven different builders.
But the day of reckoning, July 3rd, 1957, comes at last. Our cold-hearted management decides to stop service without warning, and large numbers of irate passengers are forced off the train. At least the weather was nice.
After a while, though, the steam train comes to our rescue, and cheers erupt from the crowd.
CRI&P??? Maybe we got on the wrong train, but at least we're moving again.
Anyway, the abandonment is always fun to re-enact, and there were many other trains operating. We'll have pictures of this later.
CA&E 460 was switched into Barn 8, replacing the 101, and here's a view of coming attractions. One of the reasons this car hasn't operated often is that it has a hole in the roof.
This happened while the car was in Cleveland: they ran it into a streetcar, and the pole punched a nice neat hole in the roof of the higher interurban car. This was generally not an issue on lines with with one type of car, either interurban or city, but at a trolley museum it can sometimes be a problem. Unfortunately the drip guard over the train door also got wrecked in the process.
I plan to start fixing this in the next week or so. I moved my platform over for easy access to the roof of the 460, and the hole will be patched up. This should not take very long, barring unforeseen events.
For tomorrow, July 4th, neither Frank nor I will be out at IRM. We would really appreciate photos and descriptions of what goes on for the exciting conclusion of our Independence Day weekend!