Second Section Newsletter - French Creek Valley Railroad Historical Society, Meadville, PA 16335

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Second Section Newsletter

The Second Section Newsletter
The Monthly NL informing members of recent events, volunteer opportunities, items for sale,
historical items donated and events we will be participating in or the community may be participating in that you can attend.
We hope you will learn about us and our volunteer efforts in preserving railroad history.
We will post the newest Second Section here in PDF form.
You can view past NL's on our Archive page.

Minutes from May 18, 2017 meeting.

President Bernie Hanmore called the membership meeting to order at 6:30 p.m., in the conference room of the U.S. Bronze
Foundry & Machine, Inc., located at 18649 Brake Shoe Road, Meadville, PA. The meeting venue was changed from the display site in Pomona Park, Meadville, due to the threat of thunderstorms.

Attending the meeting were Bernie Hanmore, Dennis Mead, Ed Cronin, Carl and Vanessa Timko, Bill McComas, Jack Sheets, John Snyder, Stan Niwa, Wayne Brown, Dave Ellis, John Nagurney, and Ron Stafford.

Treasurer's Report

Treasurer Ed Cronin gave his summary of the financial status of the organization, including balances, income, and expenses.
Income included dues from a member, and sales of model railroad equipment. The expense recorded for the month was payment to
Pipp Graphics & Design.

Committee Reports

Budget / Finance

John Nagurney looked for a program to protect information that will be on a cd that is planned to be sold for fundraising. He said the cost to buy the software is too expensive. He also researched whether we could have the data copyrighted. He says that the Erie Railroad textbook is in the public domain and therefore not copyrightable. He suggested to include "Please do not copy" on the discs and hope for the best. The textbook is over 100 years old and includes instructions on the various tasks a shop mechanic will need to perform the job. Plans are to sell the cd at $45 to non-members and $40 to members.

Historical / Archives

John Nagurney handed another old book that he would like to have digitized. The book, "The Making of a Railroad Officer",
is by Robert E. Woodruff, a superintendent of the Erie Railroad at the time of publication.

Not mentioned in the meeting were donations received from Hunt Christie on May 17. Donated were timetables, rule books, and


Members are reminded their membership dues are to be paid by June 30, when the current membership term expires. Members can pay in person to the treasurer, mail their check in to FCVRRHS, P.O. Box 632, Meadville, PA, 16335; or by using the website ( Paypal link.

A discussion of where to have the next meeting and annual picnic ensued. Everyone enjoyed the picnic last year at Terry and
Maryann Martin's home, and so it was suggested to do so again. Ed Cronin was instructed to contact the Martin's. Their reply
the next day was they would be more than happy to be the hosts. Meat and beverages will be supplied. Members attending are
asked to bring food to share. Details of the meeting are under the "Next Meeting" header at the end of this newsletter. Please let the secretary know if you are planning to attend and how many will be in your party.

The election of officers and board of directors will be at the next meeting on June 15. The following terms are expiring:

Ed Cronin - Treasurer, Vanessa Timko - Assistant Treasurer, Jack Sheets and Bill McComas board of directors. Ed said he
would accept the treasurer post, but this would be his last term. Vanessa declined to continue as Assistant Treasurer, citing work and home life, but would accept the nomination to finish Tom Stewart's seat on the board of directors. Tom resigned his post and will not renew his membership. He still had a year left in his term. A discussion at the next meeting will be needed to verify the continuance of the Assistant Treasurer post. If it is continued, nominations for the post of Assistant Treasurer are open.

John Nagurney related his experience of riding AMTRAK's "Lake Shore Limited" passenger train. He and his wife road coach
class going to Boston, but paid the extra $60 to ride first class on the way back. John wholely recommends riding in first class.

Model Railroad

Ed Cronin was contacted indirectly by Mrs. Karen Whalen about selling her deceased husband's HO train collection. Ed visited
Mrs. Whalen to inspect the collection to determine its worth. Mrs. Whalen prefers to sell the collection as one lot, rather
than piece it out. A list of the equipment was given to the attending members to view. Ed then made the motion to offer Mrs.
Whalen a set sum plus 50% of the of the sales. The motion was seconded by Chris Manning. The motion carried by unanimous vote
of the attending members.

Jack Sheets brought in a box of HO model railroad equipment for the membership to look at. Several locomotives were in need
of inspection to make sure they work. Offers are being accepted. (Editors note: The equipment has not been inventoried as yet,
so a listing is not possible at this time.)

Property / Equipment

The status of the DL&W Russell snowplow has not changed. The Norfolk Southern Railroad is still looking over and collecting
all the necessary paperwork. TTX, who is donating the use of a flat car, requires that a Class I railroad act as the host railroad for a move such as the snowplow's.

The Bessemer and Lake Erie Railroad boxcar was the subject of attention at the past two work sessions. On May 10th, volunteers installed the brake wheel and a ladder. On the 17th, crews painted the lettering on the side facing the highwayand the south end. Some work on the roof walk and some harware installation was done. Work to be done as weather permits include painting and installing the remaining new boards, when we get them in. After that it is painting the lettering, installing the rest of the hardware and rebuilding the one door.

The FCVRRHS received a lease agreement from the Redevelopment Authority of Meadville, which owns adjacent properties
surrounding the lot across Water St. extension. John Nagurney showed the members there is wording that may be troubling. Case in point, a section that states the Redevelopment Authority has the right to give written notice upon violation of any of the six subsections listed for the purpose of eviction. The property would have to be vacated within 45 days. It is also stated that they reserve the right to terminate the lease, without cause or reason and force the FCVRRHS to vacate the premises within 120 days. John said he would meet with the attorney of the Redevelopment Authority to try to negotiate for more favorable wording. The hope is that the organization can acquire the property on the south edge of the lot.

The discussion then turned to the display lighting. There is one more floodlight left to install to even out the lighting of the display. Al Reibel said at a previous meeting to select a Saturday and he would be down to install it. Jack Sheets noted the costs of lighting with LED bulbs vs. the current form of illuminating the site. The LEDs are more expensive, but are more than twice as cheap to operate, plus they last up to 5 times longer. After much discussion, Ed Cronin made the motion to purchase LED lights as the old ones burn out. Ron Stafford seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

At some point in time, the caboose will need to be washed and waxed to restore the gloss it once had.

Public Relations / Education

Carl Timko submitted an article to the Meadville Tribune to call the public's attention to the work that is being done on the boxcar. He sent in a detailed description and photos. Carl also sent in an application to be listed on, a website that lists just about everything to do with railroading.

Special Events / Programs

It was determined that the display site won't be open to the public until sometime after July 4th, mostly due to the work
currently being done at the display site.

Chris Manning noted that the B&O/Chessie B30-7 #8272 is on its way to its new home, the Lake Shore Railway Historical Society of North East, PA. At the time of the meeting, it was located in Cincinnati. (Editor's Note: As of May 22, it had gotten as
far as Berea, OH. It may very well be sitting at North East by the time this newsletter is read.)

Two model railroad conventions may interest the membership. The N Scale Convention is scheduled for June 21 through June 25, at the Station Square Downtown Hotel in Pittsburgh, PA. There will be all sorts of activities including layout tours, clinics,
boat rides. Most of the activities require a separate fee. The train and vendors show will be on Friday, noon to 4:00 p.m. and
Saturday, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission is $8.00 per day; children under 15 are admitted free if accompanied by a
paying adult. More information can be found at their website:

The Train Collectors Association is having its convention in Pittsburgh on June 24 through July 2. The event will be held at the Wyndham Grand Downtown Hotel.. The public displays are open Thursday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00p.m., Friday 9:00 a.m. to 4 :00  p.m., and Saturday 9:00 2:00 p.m. The Public Train Marketplace is Friday 10:00a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The Greenberg's Train and Toy Show will be at the Monroeville Convention Center in Monroeville, PA on July 22nd and 23rd.

Excursions of interest include the N&W #611, running from Roanoke, VA to Lynchburg, VA on May 27 through May 29, the Potomac Eagle Railroad in Romney, WV will be running Lehigh Coal Co. 0-6-0T #126. Also of note, the Durbin & Greenbrier Railway, which has an operating Climax locomotive , which was produced in Corry, PA, now has an operating BL2. The BL2 is a rare locomotive, as only 59 were produced by EMD. There are only 7 BL2s known to exist. D&GV's BL2 is the former Western Maryland #82, which saw service with the South Branch Valley and the West Virginia Central.

Next Meeting

The next meeting is on Thursday, June 15, 2017, at 6:30 Terry and Maryann Martin's residence, located at 9899 Franklin
Pike, Meadville, PA. Members are asked to bring food to share. Meat and beverages will be provided. Members are welcome to
bring their spouses or guests. See you there!
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