Thursday, August 24, 2017

The Narcissus was Born in Laconia, NH in 1912: Laconia Presentation and Weekend - Great Turnout, Great Time!

Saturday, August 19, Donald Curry, from Seashore Trolley Museum,
addresses the near-capacity audience in the Rotary Hall of the
  Gale MemorialLibrary in Laconia, NH.
Donald and Narcissus project manager, Phil Morse, to speak on

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

Laconia Historical Society and Museum Executive director, Pat Tierney,
opens the public presentation with a welcome and introductions. Local
TV cable access recorded the presentation that will then be broadcast
in the area on a regular basis for some period of time. PWM

One of the early guests to arrive prior to the start of the presentation was
Theresa Doucet. Theresa lives in Laconia and mentioned that her grandfather,
Alfred Doucet, was a motorman for the Laconia Street Railway. She went
on to say that her grandfather generally was the motorman when operating
No. 17. She then shared an image of her grandfather in the doorway of No.
17. Alfred is standing inside at the top of the doorway in the image above.
Seashore Trolley Museum has the original body of No. 17. It is not restored,
does not have trucks, and is not an accessioned vehicle in the collection
of the Museum. No. 17 at Seashore Trolley Museum may be the only
original streetcar body that survives that was built by the Laconia Car
Company for the Laconia Street Railway?
Image Courtesy of Theresa Doucet

A negative of No. 17 from the collection of the Laconia Historical Society
and Museum.

Of course, No. 17 seemed to be omnipresent over the weekend in Laconia :)
Cover of the book, "Slates, Shingles, & Shakes: A Renovation
Guide for Laconia's Historic Homes", published in 1978 by the City of
Laconia. Courtesy of LHSM

Theodore Roosevelt was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914,
so, of course, the Narcissus displays would include Theodore Roosevelt-related
items such as the Ken Burns' signed poster from his documentary on
The Roosevelt: An Intimate History. As well as Narcissus restored
passenger window, an exterior poplar arch for a large leaded stained glass
"eyebrow", a shoebox promoting Laconia with an image Seashore Trolley
Museum's 1906 Laconia Car company-built No. 38, from Manchester, NH.
Also displayed is an original Western Electric portable phone exactly like
those used on the Portland-Lewiston Interurbans. PWM

Another Narcissus display. This one included a tri-fold with pictures of
restoration work, the Narcissus Blog address, and five of the forty,
restored original leaded stained glass windows from the 1912 Laconia Car
Company-built, Portland-Lewiston Interurban (PLI) No, 14, Narcissus. Also
on display was a large print of the new original work of art by
Maine artist, Wade Zahares, that depicts The Narcissus operating alongside
the  builder of the PLI, W. S. Libbey, with his wife Annie, as they are riding
in Libbey's very rare 1908 Stanley K 30-hp Semi-Racer. PWM

Two more Narcissus displays included items for sale. 100% of the proceeds
from the sale of Theodore Roosevelt-related books (all signed by
the respective authors), and Narcissus art prints and greeting cards for
sale. Click Here: if you would like to purchase prints or greeting cards. PWM

Main Street view of beautiful Gale Memorial Library in Laconia, NH. PWM

Church Street view of the Gale Memorial Library in Laconia, NH.
The Laconia Historical Society & Museum, in cooperation with the library
had beautiful exhibits on display that detailed the Laconia B & M
Railroad Station, the Laconia Car Company, and the Laconia Street Railway.

The Veteran's Square view of the 1892 passenger B & M Railroad Station.
"Celebrate Laconia" held a day-long celebration on Saturday, August 19,
the 125th anniversary of the station's dedication. PWM

New Salem Street view of the 1892 B & M Railroad Station in Laconia, NH.

Various businesses provided financial
support for the station renovation. PWM

The stonework is beautiful. PWM

Stonework and walkway to access the front
of the station by walking to one's left. PWM

Stonework and walkway to access the front
of the station going to one's right. PWM

Laconia, NH, home of the Laconia Car Company. Laconia Car Company
was a major manufacturer of railway vehicles. PWM
A number of the buildings built by the Laconia Car Company are still
in place in Laconia, NH. This was the last building built by the Company.
Like most of the remaining Laconia Car Company buildings, "Streetcar
Place" has been repurposed and now is home to a number of the individual
businesses, including, Hector's Fine Foods & Spirits. PWM

Streetcar at the top of the menu of Hector's Fine Foods and Spirits in
Laconia, NH. PWM

The Laconia Historical Society & Museum (LHSM) owns this former Laconia
Car Company building. The LHM's archives and collections are held in
this building. This building was where sash trimming, glazing, and
varnishing was done while it was part of the Laconia Car Company.

Map with drawings of the Laconia Car Company buildings. Courtesy LHSM

Donald Curry next to the old railroad tracks that are seen on the
map above. The next image shows the smokestack in the map above.

What is now seen as the top of the smokestack is not what was the top
when the Laconia Car Company had it built. The section of the
stack seen here has its interior "lined" and therefore is much
stronger and more stable than the section above where the lining ceased.
The unlined section deteriorated over the years and the crumbling brinks
began to break away causing safety concerns. The unlined section was
removed and the top was covered and sealed. The remaining section is
stable. PWM

Map of Laconia Car Company with descriptions written on the rooftops.
Courtesy of LHSM

Across the street from the Laconia Historical Society & Museum building
is (left to right) Laconia Car Company tenement buildings and
passenger shops. PWM

This full map gives you a real sense of the scale of the Laconia Car Company operations.
Courtesy of the LHSM

Had the privilege of  looking through
some of the many materials in
the LHSM collection that has to do with
the Laconia Car Company.
Courtesy of LHSM

So cool to find materials that have to do with specific vehicles
built by the Laconia Car Company that is now among the
amazing collection of electric railway vehicles at
Seashore Trolley Museum. Seashore Trolley Museum
has the last original car from the 4100 series, No. 4175. 4175
was among the cars built for the Bay State Street Railway. Builder
order  No. 700 was received on April 4, 1913, for 50 City/Semicon
(semi convertible) DE (Double End) Deck (Roof style) DT
(Double-Truck) 28-foot Nos. 4150-4199 with
Bay State 12 (original trucks).

4175 at Seashore Trolley Museum three days ago. Here it is being
prepared to receive one of its new fenders. 4175 is in the final
stages of its complete restoration. Currently 4175 needs about
$10,000 for materials and some labor to finish up the restoration.
Contact this writer via email
if you would like to help 4175 financially reach its completion.

One of two newly-built fenders for 4175. PWM

The Narcissus was part of Builder Order No. 661 :)
Courtesy of LHSM

Breakdown with some details of the Builder Order No. 661 from 1912
Courtesy of LHSM

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 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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