Sunday, May 15, 2016

Narcissus Restoration Update - Part 4 - Exterior Poplar Frames 5-11-2016

Original Narcissus exterior poplar frames in the foreground with the mock-up
behind them. PWM

     This is the fourth post in the series following Seashore Trolley Museum volunteer, Lary Shaffer, at his woodworking shop at Scarborough Marsh Fine Furniture, as he uses vintage poplar supplied by Rousseau Reclaimed in South Portland, ME to repair original exterior frames and make replacement exterior frames that were missing on the 1912 Portland-Lewiston Interurban, Narcissus. The historic Narcissus is currently in Seashore Trolley Museum's Town House Restoration Shop where its exterior is being fully restored.

     This post has Lary doing the various cuts needed on the repaired frames and the newly built replacement frames. These cuts are done in a specific order. There are several different jigs that Lary built to hold the frames as they go through the shaper with various blades, in various positions as they are used to make the complicated contours necessary to match the originals.

Each half of an poplar arch is secured to the body of the
Narcissus with a screw that it counter sunk. Here you see
where Lary has tuned a vintage piece of poplar into a dowel
that he then glues into place to repair the hole made in
order to remove the original slotted-head, steel screw
that had rusted into place. PWM

After wooden dowel sanded down

New left and rights of the exterior
poplar frames made from
vintage poplar. Each of these
will next be shaped, then put
through several steps to cut the
contours to match the original
frames. PWM

Original exterior poplar frames
that have each had their ends
repaired. Each new end will
need to be shaped, then put
through several steps to cut the
contours to match the original.

The Narcissus as it waits to be moved into Seashore Trolley Museum's Town House
Restoration Shop in Kennebunkport, ME on May 20, 2015. You can see where two exterior
poplar arches come together with their horizontal extensions (tails). The ends of each of the
half-arches are clearly missing. Each of the 14 full arches has a left and right "half". Two
complete arches (four halves) were missing. Lary Shaffer replicated them by using vintage
reclaimed poplar, supplied by Rousseau Reclaimed in South Portland, ME. Only four
original ends of the arches survived and were saved through restoration. Lary Shaffer
made twenty-four new ends from vintage poplar and attached them to the repaired
original arch-halves. PWM

     Each of the newly made exterior arch halves, as well as each of the newly attached repaired ends to the original halves, will go through several steps to cut the contours into the vintage poplar to match the originals.

     The first step is to have each of the newly made full, half arches (blanks) and the new ends added to the original arches, take turns on the jig and have their excess vintage poplar material removed by passing them through the shaper.

     The second step is rounding over the top arched edge by passing them through a special router before the third step, which is to then place the arch on one of the specially made jigs for the shaper that will cut the channel that will hold several small vertical sheathing pieces on the exterior of the Narcissus.

Lary Shaffer guiding a new exterior
half arch through the shaper on a
specially designed jig that will have
the cutters remove excess vintage
poplar and shape the blank to the
specs of the original half arches
from the Narcissus. PWM

New end on an
exterior half arch
repair. PWM

Lary Shaffer pointing to the
channel cut into one of the new
exterior arch halves of the
Narcissus. PWM

Freshly cut channel in the new
end of a repaired original
exterior poplar arch half for the
Narcissus. PWM

One of the new exterior poplar arch halves for the Narcissus waiting for its
turn on the next jig to receive its next shaper cut. PWM

Channel cut on inside of new
exterior poplar arch half.
This channel will hold
the mahogany sash frame
of the ornate leaded
stained glass window. PWM

Channel cut on inside of new end
repair of the 
original exterior
poplar arch.  
This channel
will hold 
the mahogany
sash frame 
of the ornate
stained glass
window. PWM

     This next step is the most challenging cut. Removing wood from the outside while rounding over the transition to the center cut of each arch.

The complicated cut on the right of this original exterior poplar arch frame
halfis clearly visible. There are still a couple more steps for each arch to go
through before each frame has had all the necessary cuts. The 90-degree
cut seen here in the upper left side of the frame will need to be made on all
the new frames and the repair ends. Also, barely visible in this image at the
bottom of the image, is the lap-over extension. This is where the top of each
half arched frame is connected.

The unique cutter set up to
for the shaper to
accommodate the specially
made jig to make the
challenging cut on the
exterior poplar arch frames.

Lary Shaffer guiding the jig
along the shaper making the
challenging cut. PWM

The second time through to
make the final cut. PWM

The finished product :)

One of the original exterior poplar arch halves with its original ends repaired.

To help the original end pieces hold together, a hole was drilled, then filled
with a vintage poplar dowel seen in the end center of the end. PWM

Click Here to view the second post in the arched poplar frames work series.
Click Here to view the third post in the arched poplar frames work series.
Click Here to view the first post on the mahogany sash and passenger windows work
Click Here to view the post on leaded stained glass window work
Click Here to view the post on the Reclaimed Vintage lumber supplied by Rousseau Reclaimed

Restoration work continues on the Narcissus. The Narcissus is more than 100 years old now and has so many incredible stories to share. The restoration is but one.

     The Narcissus is featured in the national Gold Award-winning novel, Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride. The "Elegant Ride" is the Narcissus. Theodore Roosevelt was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914, between Lewiston and Portland, Maine, during campaigning for the Progressive Party candidates. June 2020

Independent book publisher, Phil Morse, holding
the Gold Book Award Winner plaque for
 the Middle Reader category for The Eric
Hoffer Book Award. Congratulations to
award-winning Maine author,
Jean M. Flahive

     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 page

Books are available at these local bookstores in Maine:
The Book Review, Falmouth
The Bookworm, Gorham
Letterpress Books, Portland
Nonesuch Books and More, South Portland
Sherman's Maine Coast Book Shops - All locations

Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride
by Jean M. Flahive
Illustrations by Amy J. Gagnon

     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.
A resource for teachers 
Maine Historical Society has created companion lesson plans inspired by Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride - These State-standard-based lesson plans for classroom use in grades 6, 7, and 8 are now completed. They will be uploaded to the Maine Memory Network and will be included with the other statewide lesson plans K-12. Once a link is available, it will be posted here. The lesson plans will also be uploaded and available through the Seashore Trolley Museum's website later in July 2020. Go to the Teacher Resource Page in the pulldown for more details.

The ebook is available through Amazon Kindle Click HERE

The audiobook is now available Click HERE to go to the Audible page.

2-minute, 30-second, Retail Audio Sample of the Audiobook 

Award-winning author, Jean M. Flahive


Click Here to read the post - Coveted Blueink Starred Review  - Notable Book - January 20, 2020

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

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

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.

     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)
Thank You!

MUST-READ! - Click Here 

   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. 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 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: 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 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, 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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