Friday, August 14, 2015

The Theodore Roosevelt Association and Narcissus

In many of the previous Narcissus project blog posts, the Theodore Roosevelt Association is mentioned. This post is to give readers some background information about the TRA and the developing relationship between the Seashore Trolley Museum and the Theodore Roosevelt Association. The relationship was initiated by the organizations shared an interest in seeing the 1912 Portland-Lewiston Interurban No. 14, Narcissus restored to full operating status for public operations by 2019. 2019 will be the centennial of the passing of our 26th President, Theodore Roosevelt. Having a completely restored, operating Narcissus available would allow for an incredible tribute ceremony, to honor TR, to be held at Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport.
The Narcissus is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It is the sole surviving interurban from what has been called the Finest Electric Railroad in all New England. Narcissus has the distinction of having Theodore Roosevelt as a passenger from Lewiston to Portland (ME) on August 18, 1914.

The Theodore Roosevelt Association is a historical and public service organization dedicated to perpetuating the memory and ideals of Theodore Roosevelt. While looking back at Roosevelt's life, times, and legacy, we have our sights on the future through programs that recognize brave and gifted individuals, inspire public service, bring comfort to sick children, and develop tomorrow's leaders. 
(taken from www.theodoreroosevelt.org homepage)

Since our founding in 1919, the TRA has been instrumental in preserving sites of importance to Roosevelt's life and legacy. We maintain close ties with many historic landmarks, including Sagamore Hill National Historic Park in Oyster Bay, NY, Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site in New York City, Theodore Roosevelt Island National Memorial in Washington, DC, the , Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site in Buffalo, and Pine Knot, the Roosevelts' presidential retreat in Albemarle County, VA.  (taken from www.theodoreroosevelt.org homepage)

Theodore Roosevelt's Birthplace in New York City and Sagamore Hill, his beloved home in Oyster Bay, NY, both of which were donated to the National Park Service in 1962 by the TRA, have been given long-needed renovations.

Here are three current TRA programs:

Theodore Roosevelt Public Speaking Contest
TR Public Speaking Contest for the New York City public high schools dates back to 1925, and in recent years contests have been staged for high schools in Nassau County, Long Island, Atlanta, Washington, DC, and western New York. Scholarships for college are given in New York City ($5,000) and in other locations ($1,000). Contestants give five-minute speeches, without notes, on Theodore Roosevelt. In all contests, there are semi-finals and finals. This program may be expanding into the northern New England area as well.

Theodore Roosevelt Police Awards
There are many Theodore Roosevelt Police Awards including New York City, Buffalo, the greater NY area and Boston, the Washington, DC area, Nashville, Dallas, San Diego, and Nassau County and Suffolk County on Long Island.
The awards are given to law enforcement officers on active duty who have overcome illness, injury, handicap, or another physical challenge, and who have outstanding records of police work and have returned to full-time work as police officers. All these awards are given by local chapters or groups. This program may also be expanding into more northern New England communities in the near future.

Teddy Bears for Kids Fundraiser and Hospital Support
Since the 1980s the TRA has given in excess of 85,000 Teddy bears to hospitalized children nationwide. Today we offer both "Classic Bears" and "Made-in-the-USA Bears."

This fall, the TRA will be celebrating their 96th Annual Meeting. The celebration will be in Boston on  Friday, October 2, and Saturday, October 3.  I encourage you to check out the TRA website and all the great things they do and consider becoming a member and to attend the annual meeting in Boston. I enjoyed last year's annual meeting in NYC very much and am looking forward to the wonderful and informative offerings at this year's celebration.

Author Chip Bishop was a guest speaker on Friday's opening of the
Teddy Roosevelt Days event at Seashore Trolley Museum on July 31, 2015.
Chip is a member of the Theodore Roosevelt Association and serves on 
the executive committee of the New England Chapter.  Photo courtesy of

Chip Bishop welcomes Laurence Pels to the opening night of the
Teddy Roosevelt Days event at Seashore Trolley Museum. Laurence is
the executive director of the Theodore Roosevelt Association
in Oyster Bay, NY. Photo courtesy of Patricia Pierce Erikson

National Park Service ranger, Josh Reyes, addresses the event guests. He has
been a ranger at Sagamore Hill National Historic Park for ten years.
Photo courtesy of Patricia Pierce Erikson

TRA executive director Laurence Pels (left) and Narcissus project manager
Phil Morse relaxing and enjoying an early evening ride on the 1906 Montreal
Observation car as they discuss possible future collaboration opportunities
between Seashore Trolley Museum and the TRA.
Photo courtesy of Patricia Pierce Erikson

Photo courtesy of Patricia Pierce Erikson

Museum of Mass Transit is celebrating its 81st Birthday year in 2020! 
Special Events are scheduled  - Public operations start on May 2, 2020. 
Click Here for the 2019 Events & Special Activities for the 80th Anniversary Season, with hot links

Click Here for 2019 Special Events 

Check out the new book that features the Narcissus!
Look below to read the many great reviews!

Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride

Three 5-Star Reviews from Readers' Favorite posted on January 6, 2020
Click Here to read the post

"An eye-opening and entertaining ride - you won't want the train to stop!
Highly recommended.
Andrew Vietze, award-winning author of Becoming Teddy Roosevelt.

Books are available at these local bookstores in Maine:
The Book Review, Falmouth
Letterpress Books, Portland
Nonesuch Books and More, South Portland
Nubble Books, Biddeford
Seashore Trolley Museum, Kennebunkport
Sherman's Maine Coast Book Shops - All locations

A resource for teachers. 
     We are working with the Maine Historical Society to create State-standard-based lesson plans for classroom use in grades 4, 5, 6, and 7. We hope to have the vocabulary for the various grades released soon and to unveil the full lesson plans early in 2020. In the meantime, the teacher resource post has a listing of online references for people, places, and events that are referred to throughout the book, Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride - written with a focus on using vocabulary words and sentence structure that might be useful in classroom studies for students and teachers in grades 4 to 7. Though, there are numerous words, sentences, topics, and references that students and teachers in a variety of grades, as well as readers of all ages, will find useful and of interest. 

Click Here for the announcement of the award-winning narrator for the audiobook :) 

     Millie Thayer is a headstrong farmer's daughter who chases her dreams in a way you would expect a little girl nicknamed "Spitfire would-running full tilt and with her eyes on the stars. Dreaming of leaving the farm life, working in the city, and fighting for women's right to vote, Millie imagines flying away on a magic carpet. One day, that flying carpet shows up in the form of an electric trolley that cuts across her farm. A fortune-teller predicts that Millie's path will cross that of someone famous. Suddenly, she finds herself caught up in events that shake the nation, Maine, and her family. Despairing that her dreams may be shattered, Millie learns, in an unexpected way, that dreams can be shared.

The paperback edition of Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride can be purchased online through the Seashore Trolley Museum's store website. Books purchased through the Museum's website directly benefit the Museum and the Narcissus project. Amazon book purchases also benefit the Museum and the Narcissus.

Click Here to go to the Museum Store webpage to order online

Click Here to go to the Amazon page to order the book online

Click Here to go to the ebook Kindle page through Amazon

Click Here for the post on the ebook release video with a guided tour of the Narcissus

Book, ebook, and (soon) audiobook available through Amazon.

Click Here to read January 24, 2020 - Four-Star Clarion Review

Click Here to read January 20, 2020 - Coveted Starred Blueink Review

Click Here to read January 19, 2020 - Theodore Roosevelt Center Blog Post Review

Click Here to read the December 25, 2019 4-Stars out of 4-Stars Review through OnlineBookClub

     In June of 2018, I was very happy to release a blog post announcing that award-winning Maine author, Jean M. Flahive, had agreed to write a young reader historical fiction chapter book that would benefit the Narcissus Project. In October of 2019, I was happy to report, that the book, Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride, had been printed and was available to purchase! Below are some blurbs/reviews from a few individuals who read the manuscript after being professionally edited by Maine Authors Publishing in Thomaston, Maine. 

MUST-READ! - Click Here
Here is an example of how donations to the Narcissus Project now will help with the interpretation portion of the project. The interpretation programming will include exhibits, displays, education programming. During 2019, through generous donations to the Narcissus Project, we were able to conserve, replicate, and have high resolutions digital image files made of the original, 1910, 25.5-foot long, surveyor map of the elevation and grade of the 30-mile private right-of-way of the Portland, Gray, and Lewiston Railroad (Portland-Lewiston Interurban)
MUST-READ! - Click Here  (In case you hadn't "clicked" and read it above :)

Please Consider a Donation to the Narcissus Project
to help us tell the incredible story of the Narcissus through the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project.
Thank You

   Inside the Donald G. Curry Town House Restoration Shop, the Narcissus is in the midst of major work as we strive to complete its restoration. With our estimate to have the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Narcissus in the fall of 2021, we are now planning the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project. Donations to the Narcissus Project may be used in the future to help tell the incredible 100-plus-year-old story of the Narcissus. Your donation to the Narcissus is helping to make the dream of the project's success, a reality.

See below for Donation options -
It starts with YOU
Your Donation Matters
Make a Donation TODAY

Please Help the Narcissus. 
Donation Options to Help the Narcissus Project:

The New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
is the 501c3 organization that owns and operates the Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, ME and the National Streetcar
The NEERHS is registered with the IRS (EIN# 01-0244457) and was incorporated in Maine in 1941.

Check or Money Order ***** should be made payable to:
New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
In the memo please write: Narcissus Fund 816-A
Mail to: Seashore Trolley Museum
              P. O. Box A
              Kennebunkport, ME 04046

Credit Card ***** donations can be a one-time donation or you
may choose to have a specific amount charged to your card
automatically on a monthly basis. Please contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at finance@NEERHS.org or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5.

Online Donations - may be made by using a Credit Card: 
Click Here to make an online donation through the Museum's website - When at the Donation page: Fill in donor info, etc., when at "To which fund are you donating? Scroll down to "Other" and type in: 816-A Narcissus, then continue on filling in the required information.

Click Here for PayPal - to make an online donation: you can use email: finance@NEERHS.org and in the message box write:
For Narcissus fund 816-A

Donation of Securities ***** We also accept donations of
securities. You can contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at finance@NEERHS.org or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5,
for brokerage account information for accepting donated securities.

BONUS ***** If you work for a company/corporation that will
"match" an employee's donation to an approved 501c3 non-profit
educational organization, please be sure to complete the necessary paperwork with your employer so that your donation is matched :)

Questions? ***** Please contact Narcissus project manager:
Phil Morse, pmorse31@gmail.com or call 207-985-9723 - cell.

Thank You :)

Thank You for our Current Funding Partners
20th Century Electric Railway Foundation - 2018 - Major Gift, 2017/2014 Matching Grants
Renaissance Charitable Foundation (LPCT) by Fiduciary Trust Charitable Giving Fund
Mass Bay RRE - 2018 Railroad Preservation Grant 
Thornton Academy (Saco, ME) - Staff & Alumni - Matching Grant Challenge 2014
New England Electric Railway Historical Society (Kennebunkport, ME) - Member Donations
Amherst Railway Society - 2015 Heritage Grant
National Railway Historical Society - 2016 & 2015 Heritage Preservation Grants
Enterprise Holding Foundation - 2015 Community Grant
Theodore Roosevelt Association - Member Donations
John Libby Family Association and Member Donations
* The Conley Family - In Memory of Scott Libbey 2018/2017/2016/2015
* The W. S. Libbey Family - Awalt, Conley, Graf, Holman, Libbey, McAvoy, McLaughlin, Meldrum, O'Halloran, Salto, - 2018/2017
* The Hughes Family 2017/2016/2010
New Gloucester Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Public Library Association - Pat Barter Speaker Series
* LogMein - Matching Employee Donation
* IBM - Matching Employee/Retiree Donations
* Fidelity Charitable Grant - Matching Employee Donations
* Richard E. Erwin Grant - 2017/2016

The Narcissus, with interior back-lit, stained glass windows are majestic.
Make a donation today to help restore the interior of this Maine gem.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track! Once restored,
you will be able to ride in luxury on this National Register Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.
PWM photo

Please Consider Making a Donation to the project of the National Register of Historic Places member, Narcissus. We are currently raising funds to tell the incredible story of this Maine gem.

Various News stories during the summer of 2015 about the
Narcissus and its connection to Theodore Roosevelt. TR
was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914.

Click Here to See the list of All Previous Blog Posts - Index

The Narcissus - July 31, 2015. Make a donation today.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track!
Once restored, you will be able to ride in luxury on this
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.

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