Thursday, June 8, 2017

No. 4175 - Seashore Trolley Museum's Laconia Car Company-built Collection

The hands of Seashore Trolley Museum member-volunteers,
Ed Dooks and his granddaughter Chelsey Pino, carefully
peel away the paper from the newly applied Laconia Car
Company decal on the side sill of the Laconia Car
Company-built, and then newly restored, 1906
electric locomotive from the Atlantic Shore Line Railway,
No. 100. Image by PWM 6-30-2009

The Laconia Car Company was located in the center of
Laconia (NH). O
ver the years, it expanded and
took up 7 acres of land. There were woodworking
shops, foundries, set-up shops, storehouses and paint
shops. The extensive four-story brick building was
dedicated to the iron foundry, which was connected with
the car fabrication business.

Laconia Car Company was one of the important electric railway streetcar manufacturing companies at the turn of the 20th century. This builder was the only industry in the New Hampshire town of the same name. The community problems faced by the townspeople following the company's collapse in 1928 have been the subject of several important economic studies.(1) Seashore Trolley Museum has ten accessioned electric railway representatives from the Laconia Car Company among its collections. The Laconia collection at Seashore Trolley Museum is diverse. Starting with two early single-truck models from 1895, with monitor roofs and a seating capacity of 26 passengers, up to a 1918 semi-convertible, with a seating capacity of 44. The collection includes a 1904, double-truck, 15-bench, open car with a railroad roof, wooden interurbans, a postal service car and a wooden steeple cab locomotive.

Three of these Laconia vehicles in Seashore's collection are listed in the National Register of Historic Places; 1904 Portsmouth Dover & York Street Railway, No. 108, wooden Railway Post Office/Express, 1906 Atlantic Shore Line, No. 100, wooden Steeple Cab Locomotive, and 1912 Portland-Lewiston Interurban, No. 14 - Narcissus, wooden Interurban Coach.

(1) p. 6, 1954 "Historic Cars of the Seashore Electric Railway, 1st edition


1914 - No. 4175 - Bay State Street Railway
Semi-Convertible - Double/Air
Laconia Car Company - Seats: 40   L: 39' 8"   W: 8' 3"   H: 12' 11"  Wt: 43,800
Acquired in 1976


No. 4175 at Seashore Trolley Museum's Town House Restoration Shop
Its restoration is approaching the finish line....needs $10-$15K to complete.
Click Here: to make a donation to Fund 528 - Bay State Street Railway 4175

No. 4175, was built by Laconia in 1914 and came to Seashore in 1974 as a body that had been used for a summer camp in New Jersey. On July 1, 1919, the Bay State was reorganized with public assistance from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Part of the deal called for the termination of operations in other states. Some of the 4100 series cars were assigned to Newport, Rhode Island, and were later sold off to operate on the Coast Cities Railway in Asbury Park, New Jersey, from 1925 until 1929.
No. 4175, which carried the number 703 in New Jersey, is being restored to its 1914 Bay State Street Railway configuration and appearance. The complete restoration is nearly finished (another 
$10-$15K is needed - Donations to Fund 528, Bay State St. RWy 4175. pwm) and will be a splendid example of the success of the reclamation of a stripped carbody into an outstandingly restored electric railway car. This car was also used as a prototype for a replica at the Lowell National Historic ParkHistoric Cars: The National Collection at the Seashore Trolley Museum by Ben Minnich


Edward Dooks, a long-time Seashore Trolley Museum member/volunteer, conducted, recorded, and transcribed, recollections of  Seashore Trolley Museum members' experiences involving the Museum. In addition, Ed recorded, collected, and transcribed recollections of local neighbors to Seashore Trolley Museum. Here are some of those transcriptions, as they relate to the acquisition of No. 60 in 1941.

Transcripts from 1988 interviews conducted by Ed Dooks. Interviewees:
A = John Amlaw, one of Seashore's original members

A: Another place where they had a lot of fun was when they first bought the 7000's. Five of them were assigned to Fall River for use on the Taunton run and the track was pretty rough down there. The 7000's have swing-link bolsters, which means that the car body jus sways back and forth and the motormen were afraid to run them at full speed because they were jumping around so much. So they used to joke about it that when they got up to Taunton, some of the passengers would get out and lie on the grass to recover their balance again, which is a story. I don't know how much truth there is to it but the 7000's were only on that run for a couple of weeks. The 4100's went back. The 41's, of course, had Bay State trucks under them (as does 4387, ed) so they used to bang over those ends of the rail joints and such things, but they'd bang over them but they didn't sway. So, nobody got sick riding them. 
FYI - Seashore Trolley Museum volunteers, at its satellite operation, The National Streetcar Museum in Lowell, MA, operates the Museum's 1924 New Orleans Public Service car, No. 966, on the Lowell National Historic Park line.

4131 operating at the Lowell National Historical Park in Lowell, MA
on June 5, 2017. Seashore Trolley Museum's recognized founder, Theodore
Santarelli de Brasch, help make building the replica 4131 possible.
Replicas from the same pattern were built for Portland, OR.
Story below. Photo courtesy of Mike de la Vega

During one of his frequent visits to Ida Grove, IA,
Ted stands on the front platform of the nearly complete
Eastern Mass. replica 4131 for Lowell.
Seashore Trolley Museum, NEERHS annual report
1987, pg. 8.

From the 1987 NEERHS Annual Report (with some minor edits)
Theodore Santarelli, the recognized founder of Seashore Trolley Museum, spent several years in the mid-1980's assisting the Lowell (MA) Historic Preservation Commission with their plans for expanding their historic trolley line, most notably in constructing a replica closed car. Engaged first as a consultant, then as a part-time employee, Ted suggested construction of a 4100, virtually identical to Seashore's 4175. The contract was awarded to Gomaco, of Ida Grove, Iowa, the constructor of Lowell's two open cars. On frequent trips to Iowa, Ted ensured the historical accuracy of the semi-convertible, researching even the finest details through historical documents and the memories of Eastern Mass. fans, plus via careful measuring and probing of 4175 at Seashore. Ted worked closely with Gomaco founder Harold Godberson, a dedicated craftsman, until his untimely death in 1986. Ted's dedication to this project and Gomaco's responsive craftsmanship resulted in a beautifully finished car plus fabrication of numerous parts for Seashore's 4175. Lowell's car was delivered just a month before Ted passed away (1987).

The commemorative brass plate plaque inside Lowell's 4131
officially states the car being dedicated in memory of
Theodore Santarelli de Brasch.
James D. Schantz photo from 1988 NEERHS annual report

From the 1988 NEERHS Annual Report (with some minor edits)
4131 was delivered to Lowell, MA in November 1987. Ted was on hand in Lowell to welcome it only a few weeks before his untimely death. A ceremony in Lowell on June 18, 1988, was held to dedicate 4131 to Ted's memory.


A large contingent of Seashore representatives attended the dedication
ceremony of 4131 in Lowell, on June 18, 1988. James D. Schantz photo.
Click Here: Video of Theodore Santarelli de Brasch explaining the "Birth" of Seashore Trolley -1939 

Additional blog posts on Seashore Trolley Museum's Laconia Car Company-built Collection:
Click Here: No. 14 - 1912 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 38 - 1907 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 60 - 1895 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 100 - 1906 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 108 - 1904 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 235, No. 50 & No. 9 - 1895, 1902, & 1904 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No 4175 - 1914 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
Click Here: No. 4387 - 1918 Laconia Car Company-built Collection
                            


A Benefit Event For the Narcissus Project!

2017 Teddy Roosevelt Days at Seashore Trolley Museum

Click Here: For Full Schedule of All Activities  July 21-23 and online ticket sales to the Friday Opening Gala   

                    
Mark your calendars (purchase your Friday-opening tickets in advance) and plan to attend the 2017 Teddy Roosevelt Days Event July 21-23, 2017

A Benefit Event For the Narcissus Project!

Click Here: First Post on 2017 Teddy Roosevelt Days - W. S. Libbey's 1908 Stanley Steamer
Click Here: Second Post on 2017 Teddy Roosevelt Days - Suzanne Buzby Hersey - "My Maine"
Click Here: Third Post on 2017 Teddy Roosevelt Days - Wade Zahares - Artist


More details on the celebration will be announced soon.
The Friday activity requires a ticket to be purchased in
advance. There is limited seating for the Friday gala
opening activity. Saturday and Sunday are
general admission public offerings at


The Narcissus Project Blog was created in April 2015 for the purpose of reaching out to a large number of folks through the power of social media to introduce them to the Narcissus. The Narcissus is a luxury, high-speed, wooden electric interurban. The Narcissus was built in 1912 in Laconia, NH and operated on the Portland-Lewiston Interurban, in Maine, between Portland and Lewiston, from 1914 into 1933. Theodore Roosevelt was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914. The blog posts appeal to folks with an interest in Theodore Roosevelt's connection to Maine, to folks generally interested in regional/local history, as well as those folks within the greater railway family. Hopefully, these posts will endear many of the readers to help support the Narcissus financially, as it undergoes a complete restoration over the next few years at Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine. 




We Did It!! 

$40,000 Raised!

Your Donations to the Narcissus Combined to Achieve the Goal Set Nineteen Months Ago. Raise $40,000 for the Narcissus to Meet the Challenge of the Matching Grant from the 

This brings the Combined Total Amount of Donations to the
Narcissus, based on the 20th Century Electric Railway Foundation's matching grants to $100,000!  

The $40,000 donation will be the 2nd donation to the Narcissus from the 20th Century Electric Railway Foundation as a result of successfully raising funds for a matching grant. A previous $10,000 matching grant challenge was achieved in 2014.

Donations made to the Narcissus Fund 816-A, for the remainder of 2017 and until further notice,
 will be used for work and materials needed to restore the interior of the Narcissus.

See below for Donation options -

It starts with YOU....
Your Donation Matters....
Make a Donation TODAY....

Please Help the Narcissus
Donations are now being raised to restore the interior of the Narcissus.

Donation Options to Help Restore the Narcissus:


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 to our Current Funding Partners
20th Century Electric Railway Foundation - 2017/2014 Matching Grant Challenges
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 2017/2016/2015
The W. S. Libbey Family - Awalt, Conley, Graf, Holman, Libbey, McAvoy, McLaughlin, Meldrum, O'Halloran, Salto, - 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
* IBM - Matching Employee/Retiree Donations
* Fidelity Charitable Grant - Matching Employee Donations
* Richard E. Erwin Grant - 2017/2016
Seal Cove Auto Museum


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 Historic Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.
PWM photo


Please Consider Making a Donation to the Narcissus Restoration Project. We are currently raising funds to restore the interior 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 - 100-Plus


Link to Libb(e)y Family connections




Click Here - Portland Public Library Presentation - History of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - W. S. Libbey - The Man and His Mill
Click Here - W. S. Libbey - His 1908 Stanley Steamer K 30-hp Semi-Racer
Click Here - W. Scott Libbey's 1908 Stanley Steamer History to be Featured - July 21, 2017
Click Here - Scrapbook Celebrates the People of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - May 18, 1914, Newspaper Story on the Passing of PLI Builder, W. Scott Libbey
Click Here - 102nd Anniversary of the Opening of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - 83rd anniversary of the Closing of the Portland-Lewiston Interurban
Click Here - Sophia, W. S. Libbey Descendant Visits the Narcissus
Click Here - Libb(e)y Family Connection to Narcissus becomes Personal
Click Here - Ode To the Grand Old Interurban
Click Here - The Portland-Lewiston Interurban "Bouquet" is Ordered (1912)

Links to Narcissus Restoration Work:
Click Here - Ornate Leaded Stained Glass Work
Click Here - Narcissus Enters Town House Restoration Shop
Click Here - Sorting and Cleaning Materials on Interior of the Narcissus
Click Here - September 7, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - December 7, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - December 14, 2015, Restoration Report
Click Here - Beautiful Brass of the Narcissus
Click Here - December 28, 2015 Restoration Update
Click Here - January 4, 2016, Restoration Update
Click Here - Vallee Family Photos of Narcissus 1960s
Click Here - February 11, 2016, Restoration Update
Click Here - A Wooden Interurban - Restoration Info
Click Here - NRHS 2016 Heritage Grant Award to Narcissus
Click Here - Announcement of 2016 Teddy Roosevelt Days Fundraising Event for the Narcissus
Click Here - Series of Restoration Posts related to work on exterior poplar frames
Click Here - Vintage Poplar used in Narcissus restoration
Click Here - Mahogany Sash passenger windows being restored
Click Here - "A President Has Ridden in My House!" - Video of Dan Vallee
Click Here - Teddy Roosevelt Days 2016 - Weekend Event Benefits the Narcissus
Click Here - August 2016 Restoration Update
Click Here - Mid-September Restoration Update
Click Here - Theodore Roosevelt & the Narcissus: Connecting Maine Communities
Click Here - How to Make New Seats for the Narcissus?
Click Here - 2016 Summary of Research and Outreach
Click Here - 2016 Restoration Summary


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
National Historic Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.

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