• URHS of NJ Preservation News

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey

Moderator: David

  by Ken W2KB
 
Crime Stoppers of Morris County, NJ has offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person or persons who damaged the URHS and MTA equipment at Boonton. See:

http://mccrimecotw.blogspot.com/

and

http://www.nj.com/morris/index.ssf/2017 ... red-morris
  by Ken W2KB
 
Sunday, September 30 - Boonton, NJ

Railroad Museum [for a day] is hosted by the United Railroad Historical Society of New Jersey, owners of the largest and most historic railroad collection in New Jersey. During this once-a-year event, the URHS Restoration Facility in Boonton, NJ will become New Jersey's largest railroad museum. Railroad Museum [for a day] provides a rare, family-friendly opportunity to admire, explore, and go inside of our historic trains and learn about their connection to the region we live in. Food trucks, live music, children's programs, and tours make for a day that the whole family can enjoy!

https://www.urhs.org/museumforaday
  by umtrr-author
 
Sorry I can't get there (again...)

Well worth the trip if you're in the area-- or even a bit farther away than that. Lots of equipment to admire.
  by ClearlyDiverging
 
If you've been to the 2014, 2015, 2016 or 2017 Museum for a Day, there is nothing of note that has changed. The URHS has not made significant strides in restoring anything in the last 2 years. In fact, the Reading 284 has actually started to deteriorate and took significant water damage this summer. It will not be on display as a restored piece.
  by njtmnrrbuff
 
I may go but it would be nice for the URHS guys to restore more equipment to be put on display. It's not like they are working for Anderson over at Amtrak.
  by liftedjeep
 
njt/mnrrbuff wrote:I may go but it would be nice for the URHS guys to restore more equipment to be put on display. It's not like they are working for Anderson over at Amtrak.
$$$
Ben
  by ClearlyDiverging
 
Money is one factor. However there are other issues at play here. There is no coherent mission, message or path from the leadership of the group. There has been large turnover in the last 18 months with experienced and committed members either being driven out or finally throwing in the towel and leaving on their own. The URHS has been a ship taking on water for the last few years. It appears now, the ship has taken on enough water to hit the point of no return.
  by OCtrainguy
 
Since I haven't seen anything announced here, the URHS website and their Facebook page, I am guessing there won't be an upcoming Open House on the Cape May Seashore Lines this month. I sent an email to the URHS as well last weekend and haven't gotten a response yet.
  by liftedjeep
 
OCtrainguy wrote:Since I haven't seen anything announced here, the URHS website and their Facebook page, I am guessing there won't be an upcoming Open House on the Cape May Seashore Lines this month. I sent an email to the URHS as well last weekend and haven't gotten a response yet.
Nothing has been announced regarding an event hosted by Cape May Seashore Lines and sponsored by the URHS, but CMSL does have their annual Richland Days event coming up on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at the station in Richland, NJ.

Ben
  by OCtrainguy
 
Which is good that the CMSL does participate in that event. For me, I have prior commitments that day.
  by Jeff Smith
 
URHS recently posted on their Facebook page that the Lackawanna parlor car 2454 was vandalized.
  by ClearlyDiverging
 
The URHS board voted Wednesday night to cancel this years "Museum for Day". A lack of advanced planning (read: failure of internal communication), a complete absence of experienced members in a leadership capacity, zero coordination with the town of Boonton and a lack of newly restored exhibits being completed in the last 3 years were sighted as the main causes for the cancellation.
  by Ken W2KB
 
The URHS has taken over operation of its NYC 20th Century Limited Hickory Creek observation car and the NYC 43 tavern lounge car, with plans to have public excursions next year, pandemic conditions permitting. The cars are Amtrak certified to travel anywhere on the Amtrak system, and are available for private charter. See the two below links for a description including photos and diagrams: https://www.urhs.org/charters and also https://www.urhs.org/excursions
  by Ken W2KB
 
Thank You Volunteers!

Merry Christmas Eve team,

As you can already tell, we're on a little break due to snow, and we will be off this weekend as well. But as we approach the end of this year, I wanted to send you all a note of appreciation.

This has been a remarkable year for Boonton Yard. Despite a months-long hiatus due to Covid, we still did a tremendous amount of work. That is a feat to be proud of. More importantly, we did that work safely, without incident, and without anyone getting sick as a result of their volunteering with us. That is the most we could ever ask for, but that's not the least of what we accomplished...
• This year started with the Raritan River 10. We took was was a rust hole-laden, roller paint job, and finessed it to a near-perfect finish. We have easily a few hundred hours in that job alone, and the work has paid off. Come the spring, we will start right off by debuting a finished restoration!
• The F7 salvage project has been arduous, but it has also been well worth the effort. We have helped out several museums by supplying hard-to-find parts, and we've brought in revenue for URHS that will go right back into the restoration of the rest of our collection.
• Certainly the most notable accomplishment has been the restoration of the Erie wreck crane. Only a few months ago, we couldn't even work with parts that we couldn't carry by hand. Today, we're capable of lifting the roof off of a locomotive. That is something most museums can't even say, and it is something to be grateful for. That is to say nothing of the fact that we've breathed new life into a noteworthy artifact, thanks especially to Erik's work.
• There are the dozens of smaller projects as well: totally cleaning our front yard, installing security lights, repairs to the Hickory Creek and 43, repairs to M&E 19, finally being rid of the box car, bringing home the Swift Car generator, and clearing a whole 500-foot siding to get ready for track work, just to name a few. There were so many hands on so many projects, and I wish I had the time to mention you all by name.
• And then there are the new folks we've picked up along the way. This volunteer list has grown tremendously. And new guys like Evan and Alex have not just become volunteers, but have become integral to the whole operation.
These accomplishments are important, not simply because the work was done, but because it demonstrates what we are capable of. If we can do all of that while working outside in the elements, imagine what can do as we build up out volunteer team and expand our resources.

2021 is going to be a huge year for us. We are finally going to be able to bring in the public to showcase the whole collection (at least key portion in Boonton). In URHS's 30+ years of existence, that has never happened. As equipment begins to return from Cape May Seashore Lines and Iowa Pacific, our showcase is going to become better and better.

The Hickory Creek and 43 will be back on the road next year. As you may have seen, we are already booked to be on the Autumn Colors Express in West Virginia in October. And once we know we can safely operate at full capacity, we will start scheduling Hudson River excursions out of New York City.

Also next year, we will be moving into our shop in Boonton. There are hurdles to overcome first, but finally having access to our building will be another paradigm shift in how URHS has worked for the past 30+ years. The day will soon come when we are not forced to base our work schedule on the weather or the time the sun sets. We will more than quadruple our space for tools and equipment. Most importantly, we are going to create a work environment that our volunteers deserve, and that helps us attract new talent.

It has been a hard year in so many ways, but we also have so much to be grateful for. Thank you, thank you, thank you all for your contributions this year.

See you in 2021.


--
Kevin Phalon
President, United Railroad Historical Society of NJ
104 Morris Ave, Boonton, NJ 07005
Phone: 973.903.6531
  by nomis
 
Iowa Pacific Deal Leaves Group on the Hook For Repairs, Moving Costs
http://railfan.com/iowa-pacific-deal-le ... ing-costs/
Court documents state that the non-profit is owed $14,156. But officials with the URHS said Iowa Pacific and Heritage Leasing actually owes them more than $635,000. Now, URHS is having to spend tens of thousands of dollars to repair equipment that was abandoned and bring it home, while also trying to sell other pieces, including a pair of F7 locomotives.

URHS said it has spent thousands of dollars to “triage” the equipment in preparation for movement. In order to bring some of the equipment home, URHS was forced to sell the three ex-GN cars. The proceeds from that sale will go toward moving the ex-EL “Comet I” cars and the ex-PRR coach. The group is also actively seeking a new home for the F7 locomotives.

“Iowa Pacific has done irreparable harm to this organization. Not just due to the abandonment of our equipment, but in the funding and volunteer hours that have been spent that we will never get back,” URHS officials wrote. “While it is not likely URHS will ever be made whole, we hope this incident can at least serve as a cautionary tale for other nonprofits. Our organization has learned that there truly are no safer hands than our own.”
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