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.
The Second Section for Dec. 21, 2017
You can view past NL's on our Archive page.

Minutes from the December 21, 2017 . PDF meeting
Minutes from the December 21, 2017 meeting Second Section Dec. 21, 2017

President Bernie Hanmore called the membership meeting to order at 7:20 p.m. at the Cambridge Springs Trolley Station, located off of U.S. Routes 6 and 19 in Cambridge Springs, PA. The meeting followed the annual Christmas party at which members enjoyed good food and good company.

Attending the meeting were Bernie Hanmore, Dennis, Donna, and Phoebe Mead, Ed and Suann Cronin, Carl and Vanessa Timko, Bill
and Yetivemarie McComas, Jack and Linda Sheets, Stan Niwa, Dan Higham, Jonathon, Stephanie, and Alexis Gable, Terry and
Maryann Martin, and Huntington Christie.

Treasurer's Report

Treasurer Ed Cronin's monthly financial summary included balances in both Restricted Funds and Unrestricted Funds, income,
and expenses. Income was from donations and sales at the model train display at the old Kmart building. Sales were exceptional
compared to previous years. Expenses were from the raffle ticket license and the reorder for calendars from Vickey Graphics.

Committee Reports:


The board authorized 25 more calendars to be ordered at the November meeting. By the date of this meeting, nearly all the 2018 calendars, including the 25 that were ordered, were sold. Unless we have orders for more calendars, it is unlikely that a new order is submitted.

Dennis Mead received a compact disc from the Greenville Railroad Park's Scott Woods containing 180 photographs of the Bessemer and Lake Erie Railroad on the former Meadville Conneaut Lake and Linesville branch. The photos will be used for future calendars, but not sold individually.

Twenty-five photos from the late Larry Smith's collection will be used for future calendars as well. Larry donated the photos before he moved to North Carolina years ago.

Jack Sheets said Walker Surveying LLC of Cambridge Springs will be surveying the lot across from the railroad display site in the spring. Funds for the company's fee are to be reserved.

Many visitors to the model railroad display brought in donations of model trains. Their generosity is very much appreciated.


The Crawford County Historical Society has moved from their former home at 411 Chestnut St., Meadville to the Tarr Mansion,
located near Diamond Square in Meadville. This move leaves some wondering if the old building will need a non-profit tenant,
such as the FCVRRHS.


There is a potential for the addition of a good number of new members. At least 30 membership applications were handed out
during the layout display.

Model Railroad

The layout that was donated by Stan Weidner earlier this year, was sold to Mr. John Bowser. It was a very interesting layout that used a continuous loop, but incorporated some switching also.

Our large HO layout is/was up for sale during the display. The layout, although performed as well as it ever had, was reaching the end of its time with the FCVRRHS. It is difficult to haul the large heavy pieces up and down the stairs at the U.S. Bronze, where it was stored. It will make the next owner pleased to have it. (editor's note: The layout was sold on the last day of the holiday display to Mr. Jim Groves. We are sure he will enjoy it as much as everyone else has that has seen it.)

A new layout will be planned soon, utilizing a module system, making the layout easier to haul and set up. The layout could have a different configuration depending on how many modules are available at any one time. It will be interesting to see how it turns out.

During the display at Kmart, one gentleman from Linesville came in to ask for help in laying track on a layout he is building. If anyone is interested, contact Carl Timko by emailing him at

Property / Equipment

Jack Sheets stated that surveying of the lot by Walker Surveying LLC of Cambridge Springs will begin in the spring of 2018.

The quote by Jim Lesiak of Over the Hill Trucking to haul the snowplow was four times what the board budgeted.

For price comparison, Jack is contacting other trucking firms for quotes to haul the snowplow. He has contacted Dailey Express, Giffin, Roger Miller, Byers, and Dale Ross of Titusville. He has not heard from any of them yet.

Crane services will include John Stetner and Lloyd's Rentals.

A contact with the Surface Transportation Board has been made by Carl Timko to see if they can suggest any options for the
organization to have the snowplow hauled by Norfolk Southern to Hornell, N.Y.

The height of the snowplow was discussed again. The cupola of the snowplow is of riveted construction and could be more easily removed than cutting it off. This could reduce the height 2 feet, making it easier to haul over the road.

While work at the display is on hold for the winter, Stan Niwa is working on the door of the B&LE boxcar. Bernie Hanmore is planing some boards to be used for the door.

Wiring lights and outlets in the caboose will be done in the spring, as might the wiring for the headlight on the #518.

Public Relations /Education

Thank you letters have been sent out to Meadville Medical Center, Lloyd's Rental, and Holbrook Tool & Mold. Meadville Medical
Center permitted the FCVRRHS to use the Kmart building for the layout display. This year's display has been the best in turnout and sales. Lloyd's Rental donated the use of the mobile sign to help advertise the layout. Holbrook Tool & Mold donated the use of their box truck to haul the layouts and equipment up to Kmart. A letter of thanks was sent to the Meadville Tribune for publilcation. Included to be thanked was the Tribune and Cool 101.7 FM for their advertising. Thanks also go out to everyone who helped load and unload the truck, set up the layouts and merchandise, tend the tables and the layouts. Volunteers are what makes this organization successful. Thanks also go out to all those who visited.

The train set drawing was to be Saturday, December 23, 2017, at noon.
(editor's note: The winner was Greg Hindle of Conneaut Lake, PA).

The Fall 2017 edition of the Valley Express will need to be reprinted for the March train show in Erie. The spring 2018 edition will not be ready by then.

Special Events / Programs

A model railroad open house that is still operating is the Mid-Mon Valley Model Railroad Club's at 159 Main St., in New
Eagle, PA from noon to 5 p.m. on January 6 and 7. 2018.

Upcoming train shows  for 2018 include the following:

January 6 - Snow Dogs Train Show at the U.A.W. Hall located at 5615 Chevrolet Blvd., Parma, Ohio from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Admission is $6.

January 6,7 - World's Greatest Hobby Train & Toy Show at the Monroeville Convention Center, located ar 209 Mall Plaza Blvd.,
Monroeville, PA from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $14.95 for Saturday, and
$12.95 for Sunday, or $16.95 for both days.

January 7 - West Seneca TCA Toy & Train Show at the Ismailia Shrine Temple, located at 1600 Southwestern Blvd., West Seneca,
N.Y. from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Admission to the event is $5.

January 14 - Youngstown Model Railroad Assn. Toy & Train Flea Market, located at the Salem Center Plex, 1098 N. Ellsworth Ave., Salem, OH from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Admission is $5.

January 27 - TCA Great Lakes Division Winter Train Show, U.A.W. Hall, 5615 Chevrolet Blvd., Parma, OH from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.;
Admission is $6.

January 28 - Mid-Mon Valley Model Railroad Club Train Show & Sale at 156 Chess St., New Eagle, PA from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.;
Admission is $3.

Next Meeting:

The next membership meeting is Thursday, January 18, 2018 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. See you there!

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