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Altoona Railway Museum Club:Horseshoe Curve NRHS - Memorable Moments from the Past


Memorable Moments from the Chapter's Past

This page was last updated on: March 06, 2017



12-26-98_HIGHLIGHTING_FRANK_SWARTZ.jpg (157591 bytes)  This is a news article that appeared in the Shopper Guide 12-26-98 on member Frank Swartz.      
"Group Restores Service Truck Left From Railway's Trolley Era"; 2-15-98,
Altoona Mirror
Photo of George Thompson exhibiting his extensive collection of O-gauge locomotives for the 30th Anniversary open house at the Eldolyn Terrace, Altoona; 5-16-98
Andy Mulhollen displays is collection of old PRR photographs and railroad memorabilia at the Eldolyn Terrace, Altoona; 5-16-98 4-24-98 G PRICE & L MC KEE.jpg (30616 bytes)  Photo taken April 24, 1998 at Altoona Station. Conrail Office Car special with Gary Price and Larry McKee on the deck between cars. Special operated in conjunction with Grand Opening of Master Mechanic Building, Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum.  Photo by David Seidel.


December 1998 Meeting

At the regular meeting, held on November 24, 1998, elections were held. At that time, all of the previous officers were re-elected, with one exception . Christopher J. Behe volunteered to be Editor of the Coal Bucket. The Chapter Officers are : National Director: Dick Charlesworth, President: Francis Givler, Jr. , Vice President: Joseph Harella, Secretary/Membership Secretary: Karen Givler, Historian: David Seidel, Treasurer: Bill Mangiacarne, Coal Bucket Editor/Webmaster: Chris Behe

In other news, Frank Givler reports that the Restoration of Altoona and Logan Valley Electric Railway Service truck #18, a 1946 Walter Snow Fighter is still underway. The exterior had been refurbished about a year ago. Frank is currently working on the mechanical systems and recently replaced the gas tank. Jody Kinsel assists him in the project.

Restoration of the Duquesne by the Employees of Union Tank Car Company (Chestnut Avenue and 7th Street, Altoona) is progressing. The Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum and the Horseshoe Curve Chapter, NRHS recently agreed to transfer ownership of the Pullman lounge car "The Nicholas Firestone" and sun parlor lounge " The Union League Club " from the Museum to the Chapter.

Discussions are also in progress for the Chapter to lease a rail siding at the Ward Warehousing Corp (4th Street, Altoona; at "Works") for storage space for the Duquesne, the ex-Erie Lackawanna coaches (currently in service at the WV&N railroad) when returned to Altoona, the" Nicolas Firestone", and the" Union League Club" cars. The Chapter will reinstall a switch at the siding (a two-track siding) in exchange for credit towards the lease." The REX car, currently stored at Union Tank Company, is restored (with the exception of the interior) but not Amtrak certified. You may note that it gets moved around their yard a lot. You may also see workers going in and out of it. It was learned that while Union Tank completes renovations to their shop complex, they are using the car for storage.



January 1999 Meeting

At the regular meeting held on January 26, 1999, it was learned that the West Virginia and Northern Railroad, Kingwood, West Virginia, wished to continue their lease on the Chapter's MU cars. Also discussed was the potential cost of installing the switch for the siding at the Ward Warehousing Corp (4th Street, Altoona; at "Works"). Some of the old switch parts are still present at the site but some "walked off" over the years. Of greatest expense are the switch ties. Treasurer Mangiacarne volunteered to make some telephone calls to try to locate some used (although in good condition) ties and parts. He will also compare the cost of new vs. used.

The committee for the revised AAs will meet in February. Members of the committee are Andy Muhullen, Frank Givler, George Thompson, Leonard Alwine, and Denny Walls.

No work has been done on the Walter's truck recently. Frank Givler (who is conducting the repairs at his automobile repair shop on Logan Boulevard/Rt 36, Lakemont, PA) said that the recent explosion down the street (caused by a natural gas leak) did not cause any damage to the truck.

The Chapter received Christmas cards (or to be politically correct "Holiday Cards") from the Samuel Spencer Chapter, NRHS and the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. Thank you to both.

Historian David Seidel found an interesting web site on his newly purchased computer. The web site is called "Rail Classics" ( The site has HO Scale brass models of various PRR Z-74 passenger of which is the "Duquesne". The site also displayed photographs of the cars similar to the ones the PRR took of their equipment when new. As it turns out the photos WERE the ones the PRR took. David contacted the web site creator and found out he purchased copies of the photos from the Hagley Museum. David then contacted Barb Hall from the Hagley museum. She indicated that the photos were from the collection which had been at the Altoona Public Library. They have about 7 different views of the Duquesne available for sale. A motion was made for David to purchase the photos (copies) from the Hagley Museum for the Chapter. The cost is $15.00 per 8x10 image. As soon as we get them, I'll be sure to include a version for this web site.

Your Editor/webmaster gave a brief presentation on this web site and agreements made (with Norfolk Southern, the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum, etc) concerning it. Andy Muhollen provided a laptop computer and projector for the display. Michael Mandichak (from the Central PA Railfan Guide) also visited us and provided Chapter members with an overview of his web site.


February 1999 Meeting

David Seidel reports the following from the February regular meeting, held 2/22/99. There was discussion regarding the three chapter coaches leased to the West Virginia Northern tourist railroad. Specifically, members were considering waiving lease fees in 1999 in exchange for the repainting of two of the three coaches.  To be further discussed are other specifications regarding lettering, etc.  Membership voted to give President Givler the authority to finalize an agreement . The cars are to be painted tuscan red.

Bill Mangiacarne (not present) located used switch ties for the No. 8 switch at the Ward siding. Plans call for actual installation work to be performed by The Everett RR. The Ward siding work, as discussed previously, is in lieu of rental payments for a yet to be specified period of lease. The HCC- NRHS will use this siding to store the ex-PRR Sun Parlor Lounge "Union League Club" and bedroom-lounge "Nicholas Firestone", both of which are earmarked for future cosmetic restoration and return to Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum.

Concerning the Coal Bucket, the Chapter is using color only on first page due to reproduction costs.

Len Alwine submitted an outline for revision of the video tape "The Altoona Trolley Story". The suggested format will shorten the film from 1 hr 15 min to approx 45 min.  George Thompson is working on his computer equipment for editing. Larry McKee reported on a trip proposal for "The Royal Scotsman" from London to Edinboro, Scotland. Harley Burket reported that Kathy Sollenberger is going to try to keep "On The Right Track Hobbies" open following Ray's death on Valentine Day. Dave Seidel reported on the new film (highly recommended) "October Sky" which has a cameo appearance by O. Winston Link as engineer on SOU 450l. General discussion followed the meeting.  The meeting was subsequently adjourned to "R Waffle King" for ambiance, good conversation with coffee, PRR atmosphere, and food. 

February 14, 1999 Update

David Seidel advised that he went to the Altoona Street Car Story video tape committee meeting at Frank & Karin Givler's house Friday night, 2-12-99. Attending were: David Seidel, Frank & Karin, of course, Andy Mulhollen, Len & Diane Alwine (THE authority on the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway), George Merritt, George and Joyce Thompson.  George had new video tape cases ready with marketable covers...yellow field with the two photos on cover that are currently on the web page.

George is studying some new software/equipment to enable him to edit the existing tape and insert a new soundtrack and he will continue with this project.  They will meet at a later time to edit;  probably delete several areas and insert some new material.  One suggestion is to video the route in from Hollidaysburg on a bus that duplicates old footage on the trolley to show before and after on the right-of-way.


March 1999 Meeting

This editor's trusty reporter, David Seidel, said that the March meeting was an extremely light turnout.  President Frank Givler gave verbal authorization to the West Virginia & Northern Railroad to paint the Chapter coaches in lieu of lease payments in 1999.  This will be confirmed in writing.  Discussion on color charts for Pruett-Schaeffer paints was also conducted.

Since the February meeting, a report has been given to Mike Ward at Ward Trucking/Warehouse Corp., of our planned cost estimates to restore the rail siding at the 4th street location in Altoona.  In view of the dollar amounts being expended by the Chapter to reinstall the siding, Ward anticipates an 8-10 year rent free use, depending on final cost.

Nothing  new to report on the Trolley tape project.

The Chapter is sponsoring a bus trip April 9th to Reading for the season opener of Altoona's new double-A baseball team: The Altoona Curves.  Dick Charlesworth will be handling arrangements: call (814)695-2201 evenings.

Discussion was held on RAIL CAMP 1999.    The Horseshoe Curve Chapter will again sponsor a student.  Candidates will be sought.  David Seidel will prepare a news release for the local paper(s) asking interested 9th to 12th grade students to submit a letter in essay form stating his or her reason why they are interested and why they should be considered a candidate.  The Chapter will pay the dubitation (weekly cost) less transportation.  The deadline for applications will be April 24, 1999.

Essay entries by local students should be addressed to: M. Richard Charlesworth, National Director, Horseshoe Curve Chapter, National Railway Historical Society, 908 Penn Street, Hollidaysburg, Pa., 16648.  (All other students should contact their local NRHS chapter or complete the application found on this site.)

Director Dick Charlesworth will be attending the Spring Directors Meeting in Chicago, scheduled for April 23 and 24, 1999.

Discussion re: May meeting....possibly a dinner meeting either at Hoss's Altoona or possibly up at the Station Inn in Cresson if it can be arranged. Noted:  The Station Inn was recently featured in an article in the March 22, 1999 issue of the Wall Street Journal.

The meeting adjourned to Waffle King for PRR ambience and camaraderie with refreshments. 

March 15, 1999 Update

The latest issue of The Bulletin, the official publication of the National Railway Historical Society, has a great article on the 1998 NRHS National Convention held at Steamtown, in Scranton, PA. I encourage you to read it. Also, the same issue has a good write up on Railcamp 1998. If you are unfamiliar with the project, the Bulletin is a good source to find out more information. Chapter members should note that we sponsored two local youths to attend the 1998 Railcamp. They were James S. Johnson from Claysburg, PA and Michael S. Johnston, from East Rockaway, PA. Information on Railcamp can be found here.


April 1999 Meeting

President Givler forwarded a letter to West Virginia & Northern re: painting of the Chapter coaches in lieu of lease payments in 1999.  The Correspondence was not received in WV so it was re-sent. Discussion was held of the arrangement.

Concerning the WARD Siding, Bill Mangiacarne advised that the railroad ties have arrived.  He anticipates locating some needed switch parts without much difficulty. Depending on the actual cost, we expect to have 8-10 years rent free (as previously reported). We still need approx 50 ft of additional rail to extend siding to full length. Parts needs will be provided via Mr. Alan Maples, Everett RR Co. When completed, this fenced siding could accommodate 5 cars.

Trolley Tape: The project is still in progress. George and Denver Thompson are upgrading their computer technology to do job.

Concerning the Proposal to publish Altoona retrospective in connection with sesquicentennial: Andy Mulhollen reviewed the project outline (the publication of a booklet, approximating 30 pages, containing antique post card views of PRR and Altoona to include the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway) as a fund raiser for the Chapter. Although published in connection with the sesquicentennial of Altoona, the publication will be broad enough to merit sales for an extended period of time.  Andy reviewed cost estimates to include scanning, all fees, and contracting with publisher.  Dave Seidel then reviewed other cost proposals from the "instant print" community, which proved cost prohibitive. The source material will come from the collections of Andy Mulhollen, Dave Seidel, & Leonard Alwine for the benefit of the Chapter.  Any other sources will be appropriately credited.  Discussion of the topic above followed.  A motion to proceed with the project was made by Dick Charlesworth and seconded by Greg Miller.  Additional discussion occurred.  Karin Givler suggested marketing at various sesquicentennial events with all members sharing this activity/responsibility. The motion passed.

Bus Trip report: Dick Charlesworth indicated that the bus trip for the Altoona Curve's first baseball game at Reading incurred a deficit due to a rain out.

The National Directors Meeting in Chicago was attended by Director Richard Charlesworth. He announced that John Sweigart, the Director of the Pottstown-Reading Chapter is our new Regional Director, replacing Bill Matthews (also from same Chapter, deceased).   The National Bulletin will be having much information on Norfolk Southern this year in light of the imminent merger with Conrail. NRHS HQ: Various discussions/rumors over the years mention to relocate the Headquarters Offices of the NRHS.  Indications at this time are that HQ will remain in Philadelphia, presumably due to availability of extensive volunteer base. Other sites often mentioned for HQ were Lancaster, Pa and Rome, NY.

There is a NEW NRHS CHAPTER. It is the Texas Eagle Chapter, Bryan College Station, TX. The National NRHS issuing/sponsoring a Rail Visa Card.  More information forthcoming. The National Convention in SACRAMENTO is mostly Sold Out! The 2000 Convention will be in Stamford, CT.  Discussion was held after a suggestion from Andy Mulhollen that our chapter sponsor a convention.  The work load and logistics are said to be gargantuan, but the general consensus is that HCC NRHS would like to host a National Directors Meet at some future time.. The 2001 Autumn Directors Meet is at Chambersburg, PA.  Suggestion was raised that we wait until K-4s #1361 returns to Altoona before hosting such an event. 

RAIL CAMP 1999: No candidates to date. Applications will still be accepted.

The Dinner Meeting in May will still be held as previously announced:  Tuesday, May 25, 1999, but at 7:00 P.M. rather than 7:30 P.M., at the Hoss's Steak & Sea House, Valley View Blvd and 7th St., Altoona.  In the PRR Room, of course!
Denny Walls announced that on July 24-25, the antique truck meet/show will be held at Lakemont Park.  The prediction is that the Chapter's 1946 Walter Snow Fighter will be ready. We also hope to have it ready for the May 22, 1999 Altoona sesquicentennial parade.

The motion to adjourn was made by Gregg Miller and seconded by Jim Hooks.  The group then departed from Memorial Hall at Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum to the PRR atmosphere of the R-Waffle King Restaurant for ambience, camaraderie, not to mention vittles and great conversation! When the restaurant closed, we continued in the parking lot to be sure all relevant topics of conversation were fully discussed.


Horseshoe Curve Chapter, NRHS participates in May 1999, Altoona, PA Sesquicentennial

The Horseshoe Curve Chapter NRHS participated in Altoona's sesquicentennial parade on May 22, 1999 by producing the inaugural run of the 1946 Walter Snow Fighter truck recently restored by the Chapter.  This vehicle was Service Truck No. 18 of the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway and is the only surviving operational equipment from Altoona's trolley operations which concluded street-rail operations in August, 1954.

Enroute to the parade staging area, A&LVERy Service Truck No. 18 visited the old trolley car barn, now the site of AMTRAN (Altoona Metropolitan Transit Authority) where it posed for photos under the triangle logo sign from the original car barn.  The "official portrait photo session," was attended by President Frank Givler, Secretary Karin Givler, Historian Dave Seidel, A&LVERy historian Leonard Alwine and Diane Alwine, and Denny Walls, videographer. President Givler had letterboards prepared for the truck bed sides proclaiming the Chapters name. Service Truck 18 was in the 1st Division, spot No. 8 and was well received by the citizens of Altoona as a nostalgic reminder of the trolley era in Altoona.

The Altoona sesquicentennial parade lasted 2+1/2 hrs and was a superb tribute to the history of the city, all started by the Pennsylvania Railroad. (by David Seidel; posted 5/24/99)


June Chapter Meeting - June 22, 1999

Minutes and Treasurer's reports were read and approved.

The total cost of the restoration of the 1946 Walter Snow Fighter truck (the last surviving equipment from the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway) is slightly over $6,000.  The truck is a show piece and running well.  The next show will be the Antique Truck Show at Lakemont Park in Altoona July 24, and 25th. Frank will deliver it and Denny Walls will bring it back. Denny Walls thanked Chapter members, named and unnamed for their efforts and support in the restoration. Note:  Denny filmed the truck's debut in Altoona's Sesquicentennial parade and did a superior job considering he was also driving the "chase car" some of the time.

President Givler received several documents from the West Virginia & Northern Ry regarding the Chapter coaches on lease there. $3,000 is to be placed in an escrow account to provide for their return shipment costs at some future time.  Discussion on the coach re-painting and planned maintenance was held as mentioned at prior meetings.  It was pointed out that HCC should look at other revenue raising ventures this year due to planned expenditures and deferred lease income for the coach painting.

Ward Siding (Altoona); Work is to begin next week with what materials exist to reinstall the switch. The Everett RR will do the work & will supply parts not available otherwise.

Video Tape Project:  George Thompson reported no progress. He is having difficulty obtaining the necessary equipment to mesh with his VCR. Suggested looking at other alternatives.

Sesquicentennial Book Project:  Andy Mulhollen reported that Scanning work is done and caption work is completed. Ready for printer. "Could" be ready by end of July. Discussion of marketing for the planned 1500 copies took place. Bill Mangiacarne will contact Arden and Railways to Yesteryear as possible outlets. The booklet (28-30 pages) will be a retrospective on Altoona's history, visiting the city, the PRR, the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway and Lakemont Park with images primarily from antique postcard views of the area. Expected to retail for $10 per copy.

Reviewed picnic for Horseshoe Curve Chapter on July 25th at Seidel cottage "Camp David," with Altoona-Blair County Photo Society and the Altoona Area Train Collectors Club.

Bill Mangiacarne is looking at future trip suggestions: Possible RDC trip with Bellefonte Historical Society to Lock Haven, using two RDC coaches. Snacks on board. Catered lunch at Bellefonte.  Possibly for fall. Possible trip to Bellefonte to visit Nittany Valley Model RR Club in basement of Confer Jewelry for historic Bellefonte's "Victorian Christmas".

Gregg Miller suggested a future trip to Romney, WV. to ride the Potomac Eagle RR. Other "dinner train" operations within Pennsylvania were also discussed. Trip suggestions should be forwarded either to Bill Mangiacarne or Dick Charlesworth.

Dick Charlesworth mentioned that Lancaster Chapter, NRHS is considering a fall-foliage excursion to the Altoona and Horseshoe Curve this year, approximately two weeks following Railfest.  This may require Horseshoe Curve Chapter assistance.  Details to be announced.

The Horseshoe Curve Chapter received a formal letter of "Thanks" from Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum for our donation of $150. to the Heritage Scholarship Program. This program provides paid admission for school student groups via private or corporate sponsors. Harrisburg school students benefited from the Chapter's participation.

Bill Mangiacarne discussed trying to work with ARMM to help find a way to underwrite some costs to keep the Horseshoe Curve site open later in the evening during the summer months, even with reduced services. Idea under consideration and feasibility review for at least 1 or 2 nights per week. A potential problem is having sufficient qualified staff on hand to operate the funicular, a requirement, since National Historic Sites must be fully accessible, especially for the handicapped. Some disappointment was also expressed over the winter closings of the site (Jan-April) since the Horseshoe Curve is particularly photogenic at this time of year.

The meeting adjourned to the PRR ambiance of the R-Waffle King Restaurant for refreshment and continued good conversation. (by David Seidel; posted 6/29/99)

Thanks again to David Seidel for his report on the Chapter meeting. 

June Chapter News Update

Frank Givler (or somebody) will probably take the Walter Truck to the antique truck show at Lakemont on July 24 & 25, 1999.

The latest publication by the Pennsylvania Railroad Technical and Historical Society entitled: "Altoona and the Pennsylvania Railroad - Between a Roar and a Whimper," by Betty Wagner Loeb (soft cover) merits attention.  David Seidel has contributions to it via images of antique post card views of the PRR and old Altoona. Page 74 contains a photograph of "carman John C. Behe (your editor's grandfather) and helper Frank Caporuscio, cleaning and oiling freight car triple valves," using a rotary work table, in the Altoona Works.

The book is more popularly available in hobby shops specializing in railroad supplies and selected book stores, or directly from the  PRRT&HS . The cost is approximately $25.00.

The publication was timed to coincide with Altoona's sesquicentennial celebration. It is also available at the gift shop of  Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum .(by David Seidel; posted 6/5/99) 


July Chapter Meeting - July 27, 1999

Fifteen members were in attendance. Two guests were also present, new member Bud Blair and our new Regional Vice President John Swigert from the Pottstown Reading Chapter. Expenses covered this month were from the Walters truck. A deposit was also made to Amtrak for the Washington Trip.

The Walters Truck is running well and was at the antique truck and machinery show at Lakemont Park. It was one of the more unique trucks there and it received quite a lot of attention. Denny Walls and Frank Givler have discussed restoring the plow and grater for the truck. Denny offered to store them at his place so we can remove them from the Museum yard. The antique license is now on the truck. Frank showed the members present a copy of the original order sheet for this truck.

All the paper work from the West Virginia Northern is in order and we now have it. All cars are painted. Frank would like to make a trip down the beginning of August to inspect the cars.

Al Novotney contacted Frank about the switch at 4th street. The Everett Railroad has contacted 3 different companies on the needed used parts. One has replied and they quoted a price $1500 higher than expected. The other two have not replied yet. Bill Mangiacarne will also contact Cresson Steel. A motion was passed which amended the cost for the switch work to account for cost overruns.

Sesquicentennial Book Project: Andy Mulhollen showed a sample of the booklet and asked for suggestions or ideas. He feels that the project will be complete by Railfest and he will discuss having them placed in the Museum gift shop. A suggestion was made that they also be sold on the train. After much discussion, it was thought that a table could be set up and have members rotate through staffing it. Further discussion will be held at the next two meetings.

Dick Charlesworth spoke with Denny Allen from the Lancaster Chapter. We will apparently not be needed for their coming trip to Altoona in October.

The Washington DC trip is sold out, however, a few chapter members did not respond. Bill Mangiacarne will check with the Charter company to see if we can get a bigger bus. Anyone wishing to go, please contact Bill at (814) 943-6784.

The floor was then turned over to John Swigert who told us a little about himself and his Chapter. George and Joyce Thompson invited the Chapter to hold the August meeting at their home. The time will be 6:30 pm instead of the regular time. Discussion was also held on various fund raising ideas. (by Karen Givler; updated 8/18/99)


August Update - Letter from the Webmaster

Since the Horseshoe Curve Chapter, NRHS web page went online December 29, 1998, the site has been visited 3229 times. In the last 39 days alone, there have been 1051 visits (this includes reloading the page), with 504 different people visiting the page. A total of 58 websites referred viewers to this site. Thank you to those webmasters. Netscape 4.0 seems to be the most widely used browser. This being the case, I decided that the website should be more "Netscape friendly" in its design.

The most interesting thing is in where people are viewing the Chapter web page from. The majority of viewers are from North America, however, people from Asia, Europe, and Australia are also visiting. Specifically, we have had viewers from Japan, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Mexico, Sweden, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Spain. Welcome our international viewers and I hope that you come back. You can view this information for yourself at

I have added a Guest book to the site. These seem to be a popular item these days and provide a mechanism for feedback which is easier than e-mailing. I hope to receive additional feedback on what people think about the site and how the site can be improved. The guest book can be signed here or viewed here.

The information on the website comes from various sources. They include "Eastern Railroad News", "Railpace", the Conrail Technical Society, various NRHS Chapter newsletters, and the "Altoona Mirror". Cooperation from the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum is especially appreciated.

A couple members have submitted photographs and article information. Thank you. I still would like more. The majority of submitted photos are by Chapter Historian David Seidel. I think you can agree that they are excellent. I have also had two non-members submit photos which I placed on the page. Thank you to those people as well. Photos which already have been scanned can be emailed to me at Members living in Altoona could also contact David Seidel and ask if he could scan the photo if you do not have the resources to do so. I'm sure he would not mind.

Since I do live about 50 miles from Altoona these days, I do miss various newspaper articles, interesting sightings, etc. I encourage members and non-members alike to let me know about these things so they can be included on the site and in the newsletters. I can be emailed at The only thing I ask is that you try to write the submission so that all members of the viewing public can understand it.

You may notice that I have created a Guide to the Altoona Area. I hope that railfans are finding it useful in that it has printable maps with which to find their way to "hot" railroad viewing locations. It also provides some information on what the area meant historically. I do plan to add photos so that people can get an idea of what to expect when they get to the "hotspot", I just have not had the time recently to do so.

To my knowledge, we have not sold any videos as a result of posting their availability in the Gift Shop section of the site. Maybe this will change when the updated video and the new publication on Altoona are completed.

I am going to try to schedule time to attend the August 1999 meeting (if my work schedule permits). Anyone wishing to comment on or make submissions to the newsletter/website can contact me there.

August Chapter Meeting - August 24, 1999

First of all, I actually made it to the meeting. Things just worked out! The Chapter meeting was held at 6:30 pm at George and Joyce Thompson's residence in Bellwood, PA. Note that their home is about 100 yards from the Norfolk Southern (PRR) mainline. The Thompson's provided dinner of hot dogs & sauerkraut, BBQ ham sandwiches, potato salad, chips, cakes, pies, and sodas. Twenty four people, both members and members-to-be were present, including guest Dave Hanna (who was in town for the PRRT&HS convention). The minutes from the July Meeting were read by Karin Givler and approved.

MU Cars: Frank & Karin Givler, as well as Jody Kinsel, went to the West Virginia Northern RR to inspect the cars on August 14th. Frank reported that everything appears to be in order. The two green cars are now red and the red car will have new red paint soon. (It has been about 12 years since they have been painted.) The WVNRR will reapply the reporting marks and the stenciled lettering on the ends of the cars ("do not hump" and "disconnect electric"). They are not going to apply the Horseshoe Curve Chapter lettering above the window belt. Image Sign Company out of Altoona will apply vinyl letters when the cars return to Altoona. This will result in a cleaner, more professional image. Frank said that the WVNRR did a good job in painting. They repaired the body (within the means that they had). The interior floors were painted and the interior was cleaned. The roofs were also done. (They were last done by the Western MD RR in 1994. They also put new wheels and axles on one of the cars.) A railroad safety inspector also checked over the cars and found no problems except that one of the cars had brake shoes which were beginning to wear. (The Western MD RR had used the train brakes a lot. The West Virginia Northern has a locomotive with dynamic brakes, which saves the train brakes.) The wheels and couplers were OK.

According to Frank's inspection, there were a few things that needed done. The fire extinguishers needed inspected. The buffer step plate on one car needed replaced, and there were some damaged MU connectors. One old roof leak damaged a small area of the ceiling in one car. This will need repaired as well.

The Railroad is now operating a dinner train once per month. It runs around sunset and lasts about an hour. They use the (old) red car as a power car (to run lights, heat hotplates, etc) and they built platforms (tables) to sit on top of the seatbacks in another car. There was no damage to the seats.

Lancaster Chapter's Fall Foliage Excursion: Dick Charlesworth reported that he hasn't received any further notification, however, it appears that this years trip by the Lancaster Chapter will not be like those in years past. Apparently, their members will travel to Altoona on the train, go around the Horseshoe Curve, turn at Gallitzin, and travel back to Altoona. Members will then disembark for buses to take them to the Horseshoe Curve or they can visit the Railroaders Memorial Museum. They will then travel back to Lancaster. You may remember that in years past, the train was available (and tickets were sold) for one or two local excursion trips over the Curve.

Ward Siding: Frank Givler reported that he spoke with Alan Maples two weeks ago. Apparently, another company called with a quote on parts. The price was $2600. Frank told him that the price was acceptable. Alan did advise that the Everett Railroad will be making capital improvements to their rail lines in the next couple of months and the same company who made the bid was awarded the contract to supply parts for the Railroad.

Walters Truck: Frank Givler reported that they still have plans to refurbish the grater and plow. Denny Walls said that his offer to store the equipment was still good. Frank will make plans for he and Jody Kinsel to pick up the items, currently stored in the yard of the Railroaders Memorial Museum. They will use Jody's rollback truck to do so.

Altoona Book: Andy Muhollen reported that everything will be at the printer's this Thursday. We will have a proof in about a week and there will be no trouble in making the Railfest '99 deadline. He expects the books to be done the last week of September. The book is titled "Postcard History of Altoona" and features a postcard which has a photo of Altoona and the words "Greetings from Altoona." Example postcards can be viewed here. Dick Charlesworth suggested advertising the books for sale in the Altoona Mirror.

Railfest '99: Andy talked with Museum Curator Cummins McNitt. He was told that the Museum will be having a vendor tent. Sectioned off areas will be available. We will have a table set up there for book sales. He had no other details.

Washington D.C. Trip: The bus is sold out.

July Steamtown Trip: Dick reported that the trip went well. There were about 45 participants. He attributed the low number to the late announcement of the trip.

PRR GG1 #4913: Dick and Greg Miller spoke with Andrea Vibbert. As you recall, she is the person who did the leg work to obtain this unit and paid the first $1000 in its purchase. She had heard of the deteriorating condition as of late and wanted to see for herself. (It has been 19 years since the unit was painted and during the painting, a thunderstorm occurred.) She apparently wants to make arraignments to have it refurbished cosmetically. Andrea will make another trip to Altoona on October 14 & 15. At that time, she wants to get on board to survey and photograph damages (unknown to many of us, it was vandalized inside sometime ago..the seats were cut up and some parts in the cab were broken) and its deterioration. She has a contact who will supply all the replacement parts. She also wants to have it touched up and painted for now. Frank Givler suggested having Union Tank Car Company repaint the unit. Dick Charlesworth also suggested that the Chapter donate additional funds towards the restoration. Also note that there is an insurance policy on the GG-1, in the Museum's name, which was taken out by Andrea. The policy was paying for itself the last few years but Andrea wants to start paying on it again. 


September Chapter Meeting - September 28, 1999

 Treasurer's and Secretary's reports read and approved.


  • No new report on the Duquesne; Union Tank is busy on other projects.
  • Ward Siding; Project still underway.
  • Washington DC trip sold out. Itinerary: Bus to D. C. Self touring within allotted time frames. Pick up at designated locations and time and transfer to Union Station. Ride the Capitol Limited to Cumberland, MD where bus will meet us and transfer us back to Altoona.


As previously discussed, the Chapter planned to acquire from ARMM, the following rolling stock: Sleeper-lounge Nicholas Firestone and Sun-Parlor Lounge Union League Club. Further review reveals that the Nicholas Firestone is in extremely poor condition. There have been too many years of deterioration and Chapter will withdraw its interest in this car. The Horseshoe Curve Chapter will proceed to acquire the former Union League Club for cosmetic restoration purposes. Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum will no doubt proceed to scrap the Nicholas Firestone and the old green PCRR former P-70 coach. Motions on the above by Gregg Miller and Denny Walls.


The booklet "Greetings from Altoona: A Postcard History of Altoona" includes the postcards of the PRR and the Altoona and Logan Valley Electric Railway. Publication is complete and being shipped to us.  The Chapter will promote the book initially at Railfest and has arranged with Taylor Rental to erect a tent on the ARMM lawn for this purpose. TR will set-up and tear down for $120. Discussion on pricing book and marketing at $9.44 + $0.56 tax = $10.00.

All mail orders for the booklet should be sent to Dick Charlesworth, 901 Penn Street, Hollidaysburg, Pa., 16648. There is an additional charge for postage.

The first MAIL order for the new chapter booklet was received from ROBERT AMIGH who lives near Baltimore. 


With the new format adopted in 1999, costs of publication and mailing have risen sharply. Color is used for the members copies, but black and white only for the exchange issues. Costs are running at $225 per issue X 6 issues per year.  With First Class postage, the Chapter is spending more on exchange newsletters than member newsletters.  Local Chapter dues barely cover the cost of the Coal Bucket in color. There was considerable discussion on a possible future policy change to discontinue the exchange newsletters due to our costs, particularly with the advent of WEBSITES for the exchange of information. While not all chapters have websites, it is felt some members within any chapter have access to computers for review of data. There will be no decision until 2000. Dave Seidel will tally the exchange newsletter list from those currently being received. 1999 saw a dramatic increase in returned newsletters as undeliverable. No doubt this was due to changes of newsletter editors, but is a needless expense to us with first class postage. If mailings are continued, we will only use the official published mailing addresses for chapters and not that of individual editors who often move and chapter mail is not forwarded.  If this is the case, initially, the Horseshoe Curve Chapter will discontinue mailing exchange newsletters to Chapters who do not currently mail to us.

Ancillary discussion on possibly raising local chapter dues by $2.00 to cover costs to our own membership for the color edition of the Coal Bucket. This idea was tabled at this time. Everyone agrees that the quality of the newsletter under the new format developed by Chris Behe is excellent and worthy of compliment, and enhances the reputation and professionalism of the Horseshoe Curve Chapter.


This idea was suggested by Richard Vinglas. It has been several years since the Chapter had jackets made.  Rich will research costs of silk screen vs. embroidered.  A membership survey on the idea is needed. Call Rich Vinglas for size and your thoughts.   (814) 943-5750.


Gregg Miller nominated the current slate. No other nominations were received at this time.


Harley Burket reported he will have his modular HO layout at the Cresson fire hall on October 2 & 3 for their annual railroad days celebration concurrent with Railfest in Altoona. Harley offered to sell some Chapter booklets at that location.


The Altoona Mirror reported that a new group, known as The Bloody Run Historical Society in Bedford County, plans to restore and operate a steam locomotive tourist line. Additional information forthcoming.



Chapter Members Participate in Altoona Railfest '99  (October 2 & 3, 1999)


Members of Horseshoe Curve Chapter NRHS aboard NS Office Car at the Juniata Locomotive Shop during Railfest '99, 10-2-99:  Andy Mulhollen, Chapter Surgeon General (& ARMM Board Member); Karin Givler, Chapter Secretary, and Dick Charlesworth, National Director. Photo by David Seidel, Chapter Historian Maryland Rail Commuter / Railfest '99 Excursion Train at Horseshoe Curve.  Photo By Roger Lord
Horseshoe Curve Chapter, NRHS, President Frank Givler distributes visitors guides on the Sunday, 10/3/99, 3pm excursion train.   He also acted as conductor. Passengers disembarking the Sunday, 10/3/99, 1pm excursion train at the Altoona Station.  Officers from the Altoona Police Department assisted in crossing them across (10th Avenue aka the PRR Expressway).
Walters Snowfighter, Restored by the Horseshoe Curve Chapter, NRHS The 3pm, Saturday, MARC (Maryland Rail Commuter) Train at Altoona Station.

  CHARLES_GORSUCH_OCT_1999.jpg (29922 bytes) On Sunday, 10/3/99, the Chapter's booth was staffed by Charles Gorsuch (seated right) and  Denny Walls (seated left).  Joe Harella also assisted on Saturday, 10/2/99.


October Chapter Meeting - October 26, 1999 

Reading of Minutes of previous meetings by Karin Givler; approved.
Reading of Treasurer's report; approved.


  • Ward Siding: Frank talked to Alan Maples of the Everett RR. Switch parts are being donated (unknown by whom at the time of this writing) and we will proceed according to prior authorization levels to complete the job. 


Mr. Maples is receiving anonymous complaints from residents of Freedom Twp. about kids playing in or near the Chapter's equipment at the East Freedom siding. The cars at this location are generally secure although there is a history of break-ins and theft of stored materials. Interestingly, residents nearby are ready to complain about some things but no one observes anything during thefts which have involved considerable activity to gain access.  Discussion took place on the relocation of Chapter equipment.  The Chapter has the REX car at this siding along with Keystone Restoration & Preservations ex-PRR RPO, the "Robert Hannigan".  The consensus is that if this equipment is removed from the siding in East Freedom, The Everett RR will probably remove the siding entirely from its line. A decision will be made after the renovation of Ward Siding.

Complicating this discussion is information gleaned from the Internet by Duane Miller as well as information to President Givler, that the West Virginia & Northern (WGN), which currently leases three passenger coaches from the Chapter at Kingwood, WV, may be ceasing operations at the end of 1999. (see article above).  This obviously, unless a new lessor is found, could return the coaches to Altoona, making the need for storage space critical. The Freedom siding is not considered secure any longer, and the WARD siding work needs to be expedited, but could be immediately filled to capacity. There was an indication of possible interest by the Walkersville Southern RR to lease two of the coaches at their operation north of Fredrick MD on a former PRR branch line. We prefer to keep the trio together as a unit, but will consider any offers. It is anticipated, WGN will move all equipment on their line from Kingwood WV to Tunnelton Interchange (CSX) by end of December.


A new project headed by Richard Vinglas. Samples were circulated for consideration. It is a Nylon shell with fabric lining, waist length, zipper collar with hood inside, and color maroon with chapter logo and personal name embroidered (Silver Horseshoe, black engine insert, and gold lettering).  The price is approximately in the $35.00 range via Len Snowberger at the  Antique Depot. This will cost  $200 initially for the  artwork fee (rebated).  Pre-order and payment.  Discussion was held on the subject. Place your order with Richard Vinglas.  (814) 943-5750.


The booklet "Greetings from Altoona: A Postcard History of Altoona"  illustrates older Altoona's development, the PRR, and the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway. Sales are slow. Other than direct sales at $10.00 each, the publication is in the ARMM gift shop but the main traffic season is essentially over. We need to promote and sell this item as much as possible to recoup publication costs. Dave Seidel will check with another outlet at "The Book Store" in Altoona.

Those selling books should turn in revenue to Bill Mangiacarne in a marked envelope with your name and the amount. Do not just hand in loose $$. Must maintain accurate records for sales tax reports.

A display add will be (was) in Altoona Mirror  10-27-99 advertising the book. In addition, Dick Charlesworth and Frank Givler joined the Southern Alleghenies Tourist and Convention Bureau for an additional outlet on the booklets at their location in the Logan Valley Mall. This may help holiday sales. Bill Mangiacarne entered a motion that Chapter reimburse Dick and Frank for this membership. The motion passed.

Chapter Historian, Dave Seidel, will re-submit news release story to Altoona Mirror on the booklet. It was previously submitted (10-5-99) without results. Dave also suggested that anyone holding membership in any other civic groups promote the booklet to those organizations. It has particular relevance for Altoona's sesquicentennial year. Gregg Miller will promote book via Blair County Historical Society.

Discussion on return of the printing overrun copies as the additional cost was not in proportion to monies previously discussed with the contractor.


The trip was essentially a success. But, as reported below, the arrival at Washington's Union Station resulted in the news that a hazmat derailment at Rockville, MD closed the CSX mainline and the Capitol Limited on which departure was scheduled, had been annulled. Bill Mangiacarne stated he would refund that portion of the trip costs related to the Amtrak passage.


Inquiries were solicited from anyone interested in running for any position. Nominations are received at this time with election at the November meeting and assumption of office in January.


If there is sufficient interest in a bus trip to Pittsburgh to visit the Carnegie Science Center and their annual model railroad display.  there will also be a stop at the Phipps Conservatory which is featuring the inclusion of a garden railroad this year.  Contact Bill Mangiacarne.  814-943-6784


The Chapter may try an alternating meeting arrangement, i.e., Business meetings every other month, and program meetings every other month.


Harley Burket reported on his successful HO modular RR show at the Cresson, Pa., fire hall the first weekend in October. As previously reported, Cresson and Gallitzin both have concurrent railroad theme town celebrations annually the same weekend as Railfest at Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum which is a great regional experience (especially for the guests at Cresson's Station Inn). Unfortunately for those of us who volunteer at Railfest, we rarely have the opportunity to see or participate in the other regional activities.

AATCC NEWS: Gregg Miller reported their annual calendar will be published shortly. It will feature photographs contributed by Dave Seidel with calendar annotations of major club and activity events of particular interest to both clubs.

(L to R:  Kevin Burket, Ed Weaver, Harley Burket)

October Update

David Seidel reported that the Chapter is thinking about purchasing jackets.  "A nice jacket design was approved...nylon windbreaker with hood in color and light cotton liner.  Maroon with the embroidered Chapter logo on left breast...the Chapter logo will have the horseshoe in silver, the engine in black, with gold lettering to include your name." More information as it becomes available. (posted 11/2/99)

October Update

On October 17, 1999, David Seidel reported the following:

"The Chapter trip to D.C. went well, almost.  Great bus, good weather etc.  But, we pulled up in front of Washington Union Station and were informed of a "hazmat" derailment on CSX at Rockville.  The Capitol Limited was annulled. Passengers were being bussed to Pittsburgh, but there were no other charter buses left in the DC area.  Fortunately we were still on our own bus, so that's how we had to return; continued. When we arrived back at the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum around 7:30 PM, it was dark, but the Fall Foliage Train of the Lancaster Chapter NRHS was in the station just loading up to return;  They were in Altoona all day to visit the ARMM and the Horseshoe Curve, but we were all in DC.  (They unloaded all in Altoona and toured the facilities by bus.)

David also said that he has been photographing the mainline from the Horseshoe Curve to Conomaugh.  "West-Sylvania Magazine" asked him to do a photo shoot for the October 2000 issue.  "I sure hope this stuff comes out, because there was some great situations with the foliage.  I also found some great and unusual photo locations.  The one for Conomaugh Viaduct is particularly spectacular (had never been there before). It takes 30 minutes to walk in to it on old Southern Cambria Trolley line right-of-way from Mineral Point." 

The Chapter's publication "Greetings from Altoona...A Postcard History"  is in the ARMM gift shop now.  David hopes to approach the Book Store at Park Hills Plaza as they carry items of local interest. There were two mail orders from the internet. 

Wednesday, Oct 13th featured an evening reception for Peter Barton and Cliff Kendall at the ARMM honoring them for distinguished service; both left ARMM end of the month for other positions/career changes.  Both were honored by their peers with particular complimentary remarks by William W. Withuhn, Curator/Director of the Transportation Hall, Smithsonian, Washington, D.C.  Mr. Withuhn's remarks indicated a forthcoming re-design of the Smithsonian's Transportation Exhibits, which will incorporate the many technological enhancements and interpretative displays found at Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum;  ARMM is now the model to be imitated in museum design.  Surprise guests for Peter Barton were his parents, from New York State.  (posted 11/2/99)


  Chapter Historian's Photographs on Display

This past month David had a non-railroad photograph exhibited at Southern Allegheny Museum of Art -Altoona...entitled STORMS END.

David Seidel reports that he currently has photographs on display at both the Southern Allegheny Museum of Art and at the Altoona Area Public Library.

"I have a RR Photo Exhibit for the month of November at the Altoona Area Public Library (located on 6th Avenue and 17th Street, Altoona) - Ground Floor main hallway. My photography display will run the month of November at the Altoona Area Public Library...the subject is solely Railroad Photographs. Most of the color ones are night scenes (kodachrome) around Altoona and Pittsburgh. A few black and white.   I guess I am the artist of the month."  David's photo is to be in Altoona Mirror any day now.

Also, after November 19th, David will have two railroad photos (night photography) on display at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art, in Loretto, PA, thru February......  the "photographs will be in a juried exhibit: TRIENNIAL VII at Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art, Loretto, sponsored by Art In Common, a local artist group (photography is sort of a poor relation); but, nonetheless, I had two of three entries accepted. The Two Are: "ALL PULLMAN TO CHICAGO", a scene of the all-Pullman Broadway Limited in the Altoona Station around 11:30 p.m. back in 1968. The other is my photo of the PRR MANHATTAN LIMITED, also taken at the Altoona station around the same time period. This latter photograph is enhanced by rain which cast complementary reflections to the scene."


November Chapter Meeting - November 23, 1999

All the refunds for the excursion part of the Washington DC trip have been given and we received a refund from Amtrak.

Frank Givler reported speaking to Alan Maples about the 4th Street siding.  Alan reported that the parts will not be donated, however, a lower cost of about $800 is asked.  That will be a considerable savings from the estimated cost of $2675.  The company will fax a parts list to Alan with the final cost.  Keystone Restoration will share in the siding costs.  

Dick Charlesworth reported that he has no word from the Convention and Visitors Bureau on the selling of the books.  An ad was also placed in the Altoona Mirror for Christmas with pickup places listed.  David Seidel feels we need some way to wrap the books to protect them.  He will look into this a little more before contacting the Book Store.  

The members decided to try a new format for the new year.  We will hold a social meeting every other month with business meetings in between.


Richard Vinglas reported that he has had a total of 13 orders for chapter jackets.  He brought 3 different sizes for the members to try.  To refresh your memory:

It is a Nylon shell with fabric lining, waist length, zipper collar with hood inside, and color maroon with chapter logo and personal name embroidered (Silver Horseshoe, black engine insert, and gold lettering).  The price is approximately in the $35.00 range via Len Snowberger at the  Antique Depot.  Place your order with Richard Vinglas.  (814) 943-5750.


Frank Givler spoke to Ed Strong.  The Duquesne has been put inside (one of the buildings at the Union Tank Car Company) for the winter.


Frank received more information from Gene Tucker, President of the Walkersville Southern.  They want all 3 coaches, however, Larry Jackle of the West VA Northern reported to Frank that no decision would be made before the middle of December 1999.  Frank explained this and told Mr. Tucker that we are interested but could not discuss details until the WVN reached a decision.  


 December Christmas Dinner

Approximately 25 persons attended the Chapter's informal Christmas dinner at Hoss's Restaurant in Altoona on December 7, 1999.  George Thompson showed the group his newly acquired PRR Baldwin Centipede locomotives in scale O-gauge. Everyone attending was given a cross-stitched refrigerator magnet made by Mary Jo Wahl of Albany, Ga. (one of the chapter's original founding members and past office holder including that of newsletter editor). Although of an informal nature, the evening was most enjoyable as is any opportunity for Chapter members and their families to socialize, enjoy each others company, the occasional "show-and-tell" with railroadiana, and the great conversation.  Hoss's restaurant provides a very suitable background for these get-togethers with their PRR theme private room.  Hoss's, and the R-Waffle King restaurant near Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum, which also has significant PRR memorabilia, seems to be our favorite "watering holes" for food and refreshment. (by David Seidel) (posted 1/11/00)

12-7-99.jpg (45487 bytes) 12-7-99, Christmas Dinner at Hoss's Restaurant, Altoona, PA
L-R:  William Mangiacarne, Bill Haxel, Frank Givler, Duane Miller  (photo by David Seidel)
Hccnrh~1.jpg (30305 bytes) Members of HCC, NRHS admire the new 0-guage Baldwin Centipede locomotives of George Thompson. Hoss's restaurant PRR room, 12-7-99.  (photo by David Seidel)
LES SHAFFER FRANK & KARIN GIVLER 12-7-99 NRHS.jpg (29688 bytes) Les Shaffer, Frank & Karin Givler. HCC NRHS Christmas dinner, Hoss's Restaurant PRR room, 12-7-99 (photo by David Seidel)    




 The year of 1999 was a banner-milestone year for the Horseshoe Curve Chapter, National Railway Historical Society.  Under the leadership of our new Editor and Webmaster Chris Behe, this Chapter went on-line with a new website (December 1998) and a newly formatted newsletter – the COAL BUCKET.

The Horseshoe Curve Chapter has been working to develop a location for a new industrial siding in the Altoona area.  The existing site in southern Blair County in the village of East Freedom has seen increased incidents of vandalism and theft.  Ward Warehousing Corporation in Altoona had a dual track siding at 4th street inside a fenced area.  The Chapter has negotiated lease of one of the tracks by installing a new switch at our expense. This project is ongoing at this time.  When completed, the equipment stored at East Freedom will be relocated here as well as the former PRR sun-parlor lounge UNION LEAGUE CLUB which the Chapter will acquire from Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum.

Since 1999 was Altoona’s sesquicentennial year, a committee comprised of Andy Mulhollen, David Seidel and Leonard Alwine developed a color booklet detailing the history of Altoona, PRR, Lakemont Park and the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway through the medium of antique postal card views and photographs.  The booklet has been well received by the local community at the nominal price of $10.00 each plus postage for mail requests.

The month of May began the celebration of Altoona’s sesquicentennial in earnest; concentrated efforts were made by Chapter President Francis X. Givler, with the help of Denny Walls and Jody Kinsel, to complete the mechanical restoration of the Chapter owned antique truck, a 1946 Walter SnowFighter, formerly Service Truck No. 18 from the Altoona & Logan Valley Electric Railway.  The cosmetic restoration had been completed in 1998, but the vehicle was not yet operational. Success was achieved in time for the vehicle to make its debut in Altoona’s sesquicentennial parade.  The truck was well received by Altoona citizens lined up on the extensive parade route, and was prominently displayed in the first division.

The Horseshoe Curve Chapter coaches were again utilized in a lease arrangement at the West Virginia and Northern RR at Kingwood, WV.  Reports indicate the line will cease operations at the end of 1999 and efforts were initiated to lease the equipment to another shortline operation.

The Chapter-owned PRR Class Z-74 office car DUQUESNE remains under cosmetic restoration at Union Tank Car Co., in Altoona.

The Horseshoe Curve Chapter made a donation to Altoona Railroader’s Memorial Museum’s education program by underwriting the admission cost for some school children to visit the museum (as did other businesses in the community).

Unlike 1998 when the Chapter succeeded in sending two high school students to RailCamp at Steamtown, 1999 resulted in an unsuccessful effort.

Chapter Director, M. Richard Charlesworth, and Chapter Treasurer, William Mangiacarne, operated several Chapter sponsored bus trips: (A) A trip in April to Reading for the first “away” baseball game of Altoona’s new (inaugural) AA Baseball team, The ALTOONA CURVE.  (B) A trip on the Bellefonte Central Historical Railway from Vail (Tyrone, Pa.) to Bellefonte for dinner; (C) a bus trip to Washington D.C. to visit local historic sites with the intent to ride the CAPITOL LIMITED from Washington to Cumberland.  This plan went awry with a hazmat derailment at Rockville, Md., which resulted in the annulment of the Capitol Limited.  But, we adapted well and enjoyed the impromptu return trip on our charted “highway” coach.

All Chapter meetings were held on the 4th Tuesday in Memorial Hall of Altoona Railroader’s Memorial Museum with the exception of  July, for the annual summer picnic at David and Virginia Seidel’s cottage; the month of August, George and Joyce Thompson hosted the Chapter for the monthly meeting at their home along the NS mainline at Bellwood, Pa. The December meeting is always “annulled” in favor of a dinner social, this year visiting the PRR room of Hoss’s Restaurant in Altoona.  The regular monthly meetings are also always “adjourned” to the R-Waffle King restaurant in Altoona for additional conversation in their PRR atmosphere. The May-1999 meeting was also converted to a dinner meeting with little or no business conducted. (PREPARED BY:   David W. Seidel, Chapter Historian )


Miscellaneous Photos - 1999

ANDY MULHOLLEN 5-99 NRHS BOOK LAYOUT.jpg (42379 bytes) A photo of Andy Mulhollen during the selection and layout phase of preparing the Altoona postcard book. This evening, Andy and David Seidel were doing a final selection of the postcards to be used.  05-1999 (photo by David Seidel) Father's Day trip to Bellefonte, PA (6-20-99). The Chapter rode the Bellefonte Historical RR's RDC cars from Tyrone to Bellefonte, PA. Dinner was served at the Bush House and members (and guests) rode the train back to Tyrone.
Here, David Seidel (in red) speaks with railfan Mark Wurst (R). 6-20-99 Bellefonte Historical RR's RDC car. 6-20-99
Bellefonte Historical RR's RDC car leaving Bellefonte with Chapter members on board. 6-20-99    


NRHS and its logo are trademarks of the National Railway Historical Society
(All photos are by David Seidel unless otherwise indicated. )