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HDC News 2019

News Updates - 2019

January 2019
By Ron Dukarm

ARCHIVE COLLECTIONS - As we continue to expand our archive collections and library, we now have over 6,000 square feet devoted to storing all the artifacts, books and photographs in our collection. The Buffalo Irish Genealogy Society, "BIGS" has released an index of over 4,500 New York Central Employee Records that they have compiled from the archives of the WESTERN NEW YORK RAILWAY HISTORICAL SOCIETY. Click the link to look at the index and see if you can find any relatives. They are now working on records from the Erie Railroad. They have entered over 30,000 RR employees into our data base and are working on adding another 20,000. We have erected more shelving in the library and now have maxed out our space.

VOLUNTEERS - We conclude 2018 by logging in over 6.800 hours of recorded volunteer time at the Heritage Discovery Center. You can probably triple this when you add in all the time spent at Society projects at the: Orchard Park Depot, Williamsville Depot, Hamburg Work Site, Medina Railroad Excursion activities, Two Train Shows and all the time spent by Officers, Board members, Committee Chairmen and dedicated members working at home on reports, finances, phone calls, Railway Flyer, etc.

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • STRC MEETING - 1/3/19 - The HDC hosted a meeting of the South Towns Rail Committee, exploring trains to Jamestown, attended by Ed Patton and Joe Kocsis.
  • BSRHS MEETING - 1/5/19 - The HDC hosted a meeting of seven officers the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad Historical Society, planning their annual convention at the HDC in early August. Representing the HDC were: Joe Kocsis, Ed Patton, Ron Dukarm, Steve Kocsis and Hugh Guillaume.
    1/10/19 - We received the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad Historical Society meeting minutes, a revised convention schedule and work/speaker assignments for our staff.
  • GREY LINE MEETING - 1/5/19 - Ed P. met with the owner of Grey Line Tours and set up arrangements for bus line excursionists to tour HDC this coming summer.
  • AREA A MEETINGS - 1/5/19 - Our attorney has reviewed the contract with WaterKeepers and Joe Kocsis has signed it for the installation of docks, and a kayak launch targeted to begin in March.
    1/12/19 - Joe K. and Ed P. attended a pre-construction meeting with RiverWorks and contractors on the site plan for Area A.
    1/26/19 - Joe K. and Ed P. met with investors looking to establish a kayak business in Area A. Design parameters were discussed along with a business plan.
  • SENIOR CITIZENS TOUR - 1/15/19 - The Steel Plant Museum hosted a tour of senior citizens from the Orchard Park Quaker Heights Assisted Living Center.
  • WNYRHS PUBLIC MEETING - 1/17/19 - The WNYRHS held their public meeting. A full house was present for Trustee elections. Following was members' slide night. Elected were: J Kocsis, R Dukarm, D Lawton S Kocsis, B Owens and D Mallory. Joe K. conducted the meeting and Leslie served refreshments.
  • BIGS SYMPOSIUM - 1/19/19 - The Buffalo Irish Geneological Society hosted a symposium on interpreting DNA and its relationship to genealogy. Ed P. and a DNA expert conducted the session.
  • SPM MEETING - 1/22/19 - The Steel Plant Museum conducted their monthly Board meeting.
  • BOOK PROJECT MEETING - 1/26/19 - Ron D. and Ed P. met with Steve Meyers who is doing a new book on Buffalo Railroads. Photos were reviewed for selection for the book.
DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • Ron Dukarm - donated a case of soda and a heat tape for the Pump House. Thank You Ron!
  • Hugh Guillaume - donated two hand-drawn maps of the Buffalo Waterfront from the Paul Pietrak Collection. Thank You Hugh!
  • Don Williams - donated a container of coffee creamer and a pound of sugar. Thank You Don!
  • Don and Barb Owens - donated a container of coffee. Thank You Don and Barb!
WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS & GROUNDS - 1/3/19 - Elk Street Lot - Don Owens informed us that sale negotiations for the lot are continuing with the Medaille College Sports Complex. They inquired if a caboose could be placed on the property.
    1/5/19 - Don informed us that a firm offer has been received from Medaille College for the Elk Street Lot and the WNYRHS Board is in process of approving it.
    1/12/19 - Nestor A. and Steve K. installed a new heat tape in the Pump House. Steve Koenig informed us of Norfolk Southern's plans for the former NKP yard. Salt was spread near the rear door.
    1/22/19 - Jeff shoveled the front and back entrances and salted. Our contractor plowed the parking lot.
    1/26/19 - Jeff shoveled the snow at the entrances and spread salt. Tony did the dishes. Steve consolidated engineers furniture into one room for removal next week. Joe requested a Winterization Check List for the HDC for next year. Caryl and Joe reviewed boiler repairs. Our contractor plowed the parking lot. Joe and Ed met with the Steel Plant Museum to discuss planned upgrade of high speed internet and Wi-Fi for the HDC.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 1/3/19 - Tony did the dishes and cleaned countertops. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Barb and Tom picked up and delivered the mail.
    1/5/19 - Tony did the dishes and emptied the trash. George Specht removed the wheels from the baggage cart for repair. Nestor A. and Jeff S. removed cardboard and trash from the second floor and also moved furniture and ceiling tiles to the Hospital Building. Ron D. met with Mike P. to plan the installation of two, 42 inch glass doors to be installed for the new ELHS space on the second floor. Mike also delivered panels for a third stall in the Ladies Room.
    1/8/19 - Tony did the dishes and took the trash to the dumpster. Mike delivered the lock & key from the Orchard Park storage unit.
    1/10/19 - Tony did the dishes, cleaned counters and shoveled the front walk. George brought in the baggage cart wheels he straightened and installed them on the cart. Don Williams is checking on our used oil stored in the south entrance with a view to recycling it. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors.
    1/12/19 - Marty and Adam checked the drainage in the restrooms. Don Williams will recycle used oil stored in the south hallway. Barb picked up the mail and cans/bottles for recycling. Steve replenished restroom supplies.
    1/15/19 - Tony did the dishes and cleaned countertops. Ed P. and Donna S. set up AV equipment and rehearsed with the featured speaker for the BIGS DNA symposium planned for Saturday.
    1/17/19 - Al repaired a water leak. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Leslie stocked supplies for the WNYRHS public meeting. Tony did the dishes and cleaned surfaces.
    1/19/19 - Nestor shoveled the back entrance and spread salt. Barb secured a copy of our current elevator inspection certificate.
    1/24/19 - Jeff replaced stained tiles in the Library and SPM areas. Barb picked up the mail.
    1/26/19 - Barb notified us that she renewed the cleaning contract for 2019.

  • BUILDING #75 - 1/17/19 - Contractors began trenching work inside the building.

  • OP STORAGE UNIT - 1/3/19 - Mike P. brought the final truckload of furniture, file cabinets and records from our storage facility in Orchard Park and delivered them to the Hospital Building. The storage unit is now empty.

  • LIBRARY - 1/3/19 - Jim, Donna, Pat, Mike and Ed worked on library projects. Jeff worked on the Magazine Project.
    1/5/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane, and Ed worked on library projects. Jeff worked on Magazines. Steve K. worked on archives. Hugh G. catalogued NYC archives.
    1/8/19 - Jim, Donna, Pat, Mike, Jan, Chris and Ed worked on library projects. Jim had two computer technicians in to upgrade our system.
    1/10/19 - Hugh worked on the NYC archives and Jeff on Magazines. Jen escorted a researcher using SPM files in the Library.
    1/12/19 - Jim, Donna, Ed and Diane worked on library projects. Bob worked on ELHS archives. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    1/15/19 - Jim, Donna, Ed, Mike, Pat, Chris, Jan and Diane worked on library projects. Jeff worked on Magazines.
    1/17/19 - Jeff worked on Magazines. Peter worked on archives.
    1/19/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Diane, Pat and Mike worked on library projects.
    1/22/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Jan, Pat and Mike worked on library projects. Jeff worked on Magazines. Peter worked on archives.
    1/24/19 - Ed, Jim & Donna worked on library projects. The computer consultant was in to do upgrades on our workstations.
    1/24/19 - Ed & Diane worked on library projects. Jeff worked on Magazines. Steve worked on HDC archives.

February 2018
By Ron Dukarm

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • HDC MEETING - 2/2/19 - The Heritage Discover Center Board held their monthly business meeting.
  • WNYRHS BOARD MEETING - 2/7/19 - The WNYRHS Board of Trustees held their monthly business meeting and held their election of officers.
  • BGS BOARD MEETING - 2/7/19 - The Buffalo Geological Society held their monthly Board meeting.
  • OSC MEETING - 2/7/19 - Ed and Ron met with Tom Wagner of Ontario Specialty Contracting and covered several topics of mutual concern about Areas A & B.
  • RAILROAD BOOK MEETING - 2/9/19 - Ron D. met with author Steve Meyers on selecting photos for his new Buffalo Railroad book.
  • DEVELOPER MEETING - 2/14/19 - Ron met with a representative of Savarino Enterprises who is rehabbing the old St. Stephens Church into an apartment complex and wishes to place railroad historic photos in their public areas. Sample photos will be researched.
    2/21/19 - Ron prepared pricing and sample photos for Savarino Enterprises for their rehabilitation of St. Stephens Church into apartments.
  • CLYC MEETING - 2/20/19 - Barb hosted a Board meeting of the China Light Yacht Club.
  • BSRHS MEETING - 2/23/19 - Joe, Steve, Ed & Leslie attended the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad Historical Society Symposium Committee meeting that is planning this year's convention at the HDC. Programs, schedules, menu's and train excursions were confirmed.
  • HDC MEETING - 2/26/19 - The Heritage Discover Center Board held their monthly business meeting.
  • SPM BOARD MEETING - 2/26/19 - The Steel Plant Museum held their monthly Board meeting.
  • AUCTIONEER MEETING - 2/26/19 - Mike & Ed met with an auctioneer to price our roller/wheel/motor inventory for sale at auction or on eBay.
  • TSC MEETING - 2/28/19 - Ron met with Mike Vogel planning the room setup for the Lighthouse and Tall Ships meetings on March 5th and 6th.
  • FINANCE MEETING - 2/28/19 - Barb and Marty attended a Finance Committee meeting.
DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • Paul McGrath - donated two large boxes of railroad books, magazines and railroad paperwork. Thank you Paul!
  • Don and Barb Owens - donated a can of coffee and a case of water. Thank you Don & Barb!
  • Ron Dukarm - donated a case of water, three cases of soda, a 4'x8' piece of finished plywood, two gallons of paint, one gallon of primer, two rolls of tape, a hammer, a set of 8 screw drivers and two computer cables. Thank you Ron!
  • Mike Pietrocarlo - sold some donated items and secured $1,000 for the HDC. Thank you Mike!
  • Smokin Joe's Trading Post - donated three portable sandwich signs, a 30" x 48" glass door refrigerator, a chrome shelving unit, a 30" x 60" table, 10 rubber mats, a box of office supplies and 8 "Jersey Barriers." Jeff and Adam unloaded the concrete barriers next to Pump House. Thank you Smokin Joe's!

  • Tom Stackhouse - donated a railroad book. Thank you Tom!
  • John Slater - has arrainged that we will be donated a NKP signal that was removed from the mainline in 1947. Delivery date TBD. Thank you John!
  • Bob Griffiths - donated 25 wooden railroad logo plaques and will send another group. Thank you Bob!
  • Anna Marie Falkner - donated two Pennsylvania Railroad passes from 1924 and 1927. Thank you Anna Marie!
  • Steve Meyers - donated a pound of coffee and two cases of soda. Thank you Steve!

WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS & GROUNDS - 2/2/19 - Jeff shoveled snow at entrances and spread salt. Our contractor plowed the parking lot.
    2/14/19 - Our snowplow contractor cleared the lot and picked up the dumpster trash. Don Owens salted the parking lot. Jeff S. shoveled the front walk and found a problem in the SPM heating system. Jeff also took all the trash from the Archive Building and Rm 160 to the dumpster. Ontario Specialty Contracting employees began working on the old Buffalo Color Ice House removing steel appendages from the roof.
    2/19/19 - Jeff S. and Tony M. shoveled the front walk. Our contractor plowed the parking lot. OSC started demolishing the old Buffalo Color Machine Shops.
    2/21/19 - Adam P. filled the brake fluid in our Grove deck crane and also checked for wind damage on Areas A & B. He found corrugated sheet panels blown off of Bldg 82, parking stakes were blown over, the grill of the Jacobson gang mower blown off and flat tires on both the crane and the backhoe. Don & Barb Owens took staff & visitors on a tour of Areas A & B.
    2/26/19 - Nestor A. checked the roof of the HDC for wind damage. Jeff & Nestor removed a damaged HVAC duct from the SPM.
    2/28/19 - Our contractor plowed the parking lot. Don O. shoveled the back entrance.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 2/2/19 - Tony did dishes and emptied trash. Caryl and Joe reviewed boiler repairs. Steve checked for leaks on second floor.
    2/7/19 - Tony did dishes. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped floors.
    2/9/19 - Tony did the dishes and mopped floors. Don picked up mail and took cans/bottles. Nestor and Jeff removed the broken refrigerator to the dumpster. Our working refrigerator was moved next to the stove. Jeff scrubbed the floors. Mike and his moving crew brought in the newly donated glass door refrigerator. Steve rearranged shelving in the kitchen.
    2/12/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected the trash and mopped the floors.
    2/14/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned surfaces. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped floors. Don picked up the mail.
    2/16/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned surfaces. Nestor took old furniture to dumpster. Diane restocked restrooms and janitor closet with bathroom tissue on second floor. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the bar room.
    2/19/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned surfaces. Barb & Don cleaned our new refrigerator.
    2/21/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Our contractor cleaned restrooms and mopped floors. Erica swept floors. Marty repaired sticking door to the Bar Room and found problem with the PA system. Jeff and Adam placed sandwich boards in Boiler Room.
    2/23/19 - Tony did the dishes and cleaned surfaces. Tom picked up Lehigh Valley PA locomotive models the Williamsville Depot. Steve hung a sign in the Bar Room. Joe got new refrigerator running.
    2/26/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned surfaces.
    2/28/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned surfaces. Our contractors cleaned restrooms and mopped floors.

  • ROOM 160 COMPLEX - 2/2/19 - Joe and Ron planned all the work in Room 160, painting, floor cleaning and cabinet work.
    2/5/19 - Barb washed the office walls and swept the floors. Jeff removed paper and hanging items from the walls. Nestor moved out unneeded furniture.
    2/7/19 - Jeff removed nails and wires from walls and spackled all holes. Nestor moved out more unneeded furniture and set up new HDC office. The main water supply to the HDC is located in the Room 160 Complex conference room. Recent changes required a new access door to the pipes. The new access panel will be easily removable for inspections and repair. Nestor and Jeff built new framework over the water pipes.
    2/9/19 - Jeff sanded all the patched holes.
    2/14/19 - Contractor hired clean all the floors will be in Tuesday at 10:00am to give an estimate and schedule a cleaning date.
    2/16/19 - Nestor and Ron finished framing in the water access pipes in the conference room.
    2/19/19 - Barb & Bob met with the cleaning contractor to get the price on doing all the RM 160 floors.
    2/23/19 - Jeff & Nestor placed new plywood in Rm 160.
    2/26/19 - Jeff primed all the patched holes. Jeff & Nestor taped the office for painting.
    2/28/19 - Marty fabricated the wood top for the pipe case.

  • NYC WOODEN CABOOSE - 2/9/19 - Don Owens informed us that our NYC caboose move to the HDC is on track. Moving date is still TBD.

  • LIBRARY - 2/2/19 - Ed & Diane worked on library projects. Jeff worked on magazines, Steve on HDC archives.
    2/5/19 - Ed, Mike, Pat, Jan & Chris worked on library projects. Jeff worked on the magazines.
    2/9/19 - Ed and Diane worked on library projects. John and Brian worked on NKP archives. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    2/12/19 - Mike, Jan and Pat worked on library projects. Jeff worked on magazines.
    2/14/19 - Bob worked on ELHS archives. Joe S. worked on ELHS archives and getting ready for our February 16th Train Show. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    2/16/19 - Diane, John B, and John S. worked on library projects.
    2/19/19 - Diane, John, Ed, Jan, Pat and Chris worked on library projects. Bob worked on ELHS archives.
    2/23/19 - Diane worked on library projects. Steve K worked on archives. Steve M scanned photos for his new Buffalo Railroad book. Jeff worked on magazines.
    2/26/19 - Mike, Pat, Jan & Chris worked on library projects.
    2/28/19 - Bob worked on ELHS archives.

March 2019
By Ron Dukarm

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • BGS MEETING - 3/2/19 - The Buffalo Geology Society held their public meeting.
  • WATERKEEPERS MEETING - 3/5/19 - The WaterKeepers sent their contract photographer to document Area A shoreline as construction will begin soon.
  • STEEL PLANT MUSEUM - 1st WEDNESDAY EVENT - 3/6/19 - The Steel Plant Museum of WNY and Buffalo Niagara Waterkeepers presented the "Buffalo River History Panel." David L George-Shongo, Jr. from Seneca Iroquois National Museum, Tim Bohen, Author of "Against the Grain," and Ed Patton from WNY Heritage Discovery Center lead a very entertaining presentation to over 90 people!
  • TALL SHIPS MEETING - 3/7/19 - The Tall Ships Committee held a planning meeting of over 60 local law enforcement officials (FBI, City, Sheriffs, Border patrol, Coast Guard, etc.) for their July 4th festival. Leslie was host and served refreshments.
  • WNYRHS MEETING - 3/7/19 - The WNYRHS Board of Trustees held their monthly business meeting.
  • BGS MEETING - 3/7/19 - The Buffalo Geology Society held a Board meeting.
  • AREA "A" MEETING - 3/7/19 - Joe and Ed met with RiverWorks going over lease arrangements and building construction budgets.
    3/23/19 - Don O. met with the President of the Land Conservancy and two staffers. They toured the DL&W highline.
  • PLANNING MEETINGS - 3/9/19 - Don Owens was selected by the Land Conservancy to judge the best plans proposed for the DL&W Highline and has it ranked in the best five. Joe met with Earl Ketry from RiverWorks and has finalized the building locations and parking areas for Area "A."
  • MUSEUM TOUR - 3/12/19 - The Steel Plant Museum conducted a museum tour for a busload of residents of a Senior Adult Services Center.
  • MUSEUM TOUR - 3/14/19 - Don Owens gave a special tour to the Aurora Historical Society Director.
  • BLA MEETING - 3/14/19 - The Buffalo Lighthouse Association held their Board meeting.
  • FINANCE MEETING - 3/16/19 - A meeting of the Finance Committee was attended by Don, Barb, Joe, Jim, Cindy & Caryl.
  • St PATRICK'S DAY PARTY - 3/16/19 - Leslie & Joe Kocsis hosted a St Patricks Day party for HDC volunteers. A good time was had by all.
  • SPM BOARD MEETING - 3/19/19 - The Steel Plant Museum held their monthly Board meeting.
  • TRAIN SHOW MEETING - 3/21/19 - A meeting of the Train Show Committee was held attended by Art, Caryl, Don, Barb and Marty.
  • WNYRHS PUBLIC MEETING - 3/21/19 - The WNYRHS held their March Public Meeting. Society member, Geno Dailey, gave a well received program covering a "Coast to Coast" Amtrak trip he completed in October 2018. New president Caryl Youngers lead the meeting and Barb O. sold refreshments.
  • HDC BOARD MEETING - 3/26/19 - The Heritage Discovery Center Board held their monthly business meeting.
  • BGS MEETING - 3/28/19 - Ron met with the President of the Buffalo Geological Society and his staff. They have battery lights now in the DL&W boxcar and are in no hurry for power to be installed. Also they appreciate the height of boxcar as it makes loading heavy items much easier into their high-bed truck. They had over 4,000 people attend their March show at the Agri-Center. Their members like our meeting site and the safe, nearby parking. They will bring in another group they are associated with to have meetings at the HDC.
  • VOLUNTEER MEETING - 3/28/19 - A meeting on Volunteerism was held Thursday attended by Don O., Barb O., Caryl Y., Cindy T. and Luke Topolski.
DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • William Wachob - donated 94 Lionel Hallmark Christmas tree train ornaments sold between 1996 and 2018. The donation also included many "limited edition" pieces. Thank you William!
  • Keith Ambrose - donated many SB Railway news clippings, two switch keys and an employee tag. Thank you Keith!
  • Don and Barb Owens - donated two cases of water, a case of soda, hand soap, paper towels & scent packs. Thank you Don & Barb!
  • Noel Varela - donated a container of Coffee Mate. Thank you Noel!
  • Smokin Joes Trading Post - donated a portable food serving steam table for banquet service, a huge commercial ice making machine which will be scraped and two 20 ft. containers also loaded with scrap steel. Thank you Smokin Joes!!!
  • Mike Pietrocarlo - donated the use of his truck and picked up and delivered all the donations from Smokin Joes. He also delivered three 30-yard dumpsters of metal scrap, motors, etc. to be scraped and a 4'x8' sheet of stainless steel for the benefit of the HDC for a total of $9000. He also donated 17 sections of shelving and two 20-ft containers of metal scrap from Smokin Joes plus a large commercial ice maker to be scrapped (placed in Area A). Thank you Mike!!!
  • Ron Dukarm - donated a new snow shovel, ten feet of duct-work for the SPM area, floor tiles, floor cement and flooring tools for the Rm. 160 Complex. Thank you Ron!
  • Steel Plant Museum - donated 40 envelopes of SB Railway accidents reports. Thank you SPM!
  • Dave Skoney - donated four wood chisels, a screwdriver and four sanding discs. Thank you Dave!
  • Caryl Youngers - donated 250 feet of communications wire. Thank you Caryl!
  • John Blest - donated a Soo Lines 1892 calendar booklet. Thank you John!
  • James Michalowski - donated 24 hard cover books, 22 soft cover books & videos. Thank you James!
  • Don Williams - donated a can of coffee and a jar of coffee creamer. Thank you Don!
  • Kevin Walters - donated and delivered 600 pounds of Portage Bridge turn buckles and connecting rods. He also donated two complete signal platforms, a ladder base, five sets of railroad cross-bucks and a NKP junction signal box. Thank you Kevin!!!
  • Rich Carlson - donated eight railroad books, an 18"x34" framed locomotive photo and a plaque. Thank you Rich!
  • Stephen Philip Romanowski - donated four railroad books and seven battery-powered South Buffalo Railway lanterns. Thank you Stephen!
  • Ron Dukarm, Don Owens and the Steel Plant Museum - contributed a total of $1,300 to purchase the 14' Portage Bridge piece from a southern tier scrap yard for display on the front lawn of the HDC. Thank you ALL!
  • Noel Varela - donated three pounds of coffee. Thank you Noel!
  • Smokin Joe's Trading Post - donated two 20-ft containers of metal scrap plus a large commercial ice maker to be scrapped. (placed in Area A). Also two wheelchairs, four metal storage cabinets and four carts. Thank you Smokin Joe's!!!
  • The Davies Family - Jerry, Candy and Cindy Davies donated their father's NYC artifacts including photos, news clippings, six spikes, seven railroad keys, a switch lock & NYC postcards. Thank you Davies Family!

WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS & GROUNDS - 3/5/19 - Jeff and Nestor installed new HVAC duct work in the SPM.
    3/7/19 - Tony shoveled the walks. Our contractor plowed the parking lot. OSC removed the pipe bridge connecting the Guardhouse and the old Buffalo Color Machine Shop. The two I-beams were left standing as we requested.
    3/14/19 - Tony picked up debris on the grounds around the HDC building.
    3/23/19 - Adam got our back-hoe started. He restacked the "Jersey Barriers" and moved some items into the Hospital Building. Barb contacted Waste Management and ordered a weekly pick-up of the dumpster for the summer months.
    3/28/19 - Waste Management emptied our dumpster. Mike moved the forklift to Building #75 to do some work in the building. Don Williams will remove a trashed couch, chair and table top for disposal on Saturday.
    3/30/19 - Don Williams and Nestor loaded old furniture and debris & took to the land fill. Mike P. cleaned out more debris from Building #75.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 3/2/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Don picked up the mail.
    3/5/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Leslie brought in food and set out tableware for Wednesdays Law Enforcement meeting. Nestor removed all the stored items in the Bar Room to Room 160. Ron restocked the restrooms.
    3/7/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Nestor removed tables from the Meeting Room. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Jerry and Jeff replaced all the tables and set up the Meeting Room.
    3/9/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected trash and mopped the floors. Barb swept the floors, dusted surfaces and restocked the restrooms.
    3/12/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected trash and mopped the floors. Nestor removed trash from the second floor.
    3/14/19 - Tony did the dishes and Barb restocked the restrooms and washed the blinds. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors.
    3/16/19 - Tony did the dishes
    3/19/19 - Tony did the dishes and mopped the floors. Jim Slominski delivered the last of the Society Store inventory. Joe & Leslie cleaned up the Kitchen and Meeting Room after the St Pat's party.
    3/21/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and the floors. Nestor moved trash to the dumpster.
    3/23/19 - Steve mounted six more of our wooden railroad logo plaques donated by Bob Griffiths in the Meeting Room. Adam removed the trash out to the dumpster. Tony did the dishes and cleaned the counters.
    3/26/19 - Tony did the dishes and cleaned the counters.
    3/28/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Tony did the dishes and cleaned counters.
    3/30/19 - The Buffalo Geology Society started to place displays in their display case. Tony did the dishes and cleaned counters.

  • ROOM 160 COMPLEX - 3/2/19 - Jeff did trim painting in Rm 160.
    3/5/19 - Jeff did more painting in Rm 160.
    3/9/19 - Jeff and Nestor started painting walls in the Rm 160 complex.
    3/12/19 - Jeff did more painting in the Rm 160 complex.
    3/14/19 - Marty L. painted in Room 160.
    3/16/19 - Jeff painted more in the Rm 160 complex.
    3/19/19 - Jeff started removing painter's tape in the Room 160 complex.
    3/21/19 - Marty did more painting in the complex.
    3/23/19 - Nestor complete more painting in the Room 160 Complex. Barb washed the window frames in Room 160.
    3/26/19 - Nestor and Jeff painted more walls in the Room 160 complex.
    3/28/19 - Marty removed old and broken floor tiles from Room 160.
    3/30/19 - Marty V. laid over a dozen new floor tiles in Room 160 and Nestor did patching and painting.

  •  PORTAGE BRIDGE  - 3/19/19 - Society member, Kevin Walters, has made arrangements with the steel scraper of the Portage Bridge to reserve for us the last remaining pieces of the 1875 bridge structure. One is 14 feet long, and 18" by 30," weighing approximately two tons. He will only hold it a short time before he scraps it out. He is willing to sell it to us at scrap price: $1,100. We believe this piece would make an excellent artifact/artwork to display in front of our building. It represents both railroading and steel-making. We are seeking to raise funds for the purchase and transport of these historic artifacts.
    3/23/19 - Ron Dukarm, Don Owens and the Steel Plant Museum contributed $1,300 to purchase the 14' Portage Bridge piece from the scrap yard for display on our front lawn of the Heritage Discovery Center.
    3/27/19 - Kevin Walters purchased the remaining pieces of the bridge from the scrap dealer and arranged transportation. Marty L. and Nestor A. unload the artifacts from the tilt bed truck in the HDC parking lot. For safe keeping, Marty L., delicately placed them into the guardhouse. Many thanks to Barb, Kevin, Nestor and Marty for managing this project on such a short notice.


  • MECHANICAL - 3/9/19 - Mike repaired a flat tire on the backhoe, tuned up the engine, replaced battery cables and got it running.
    3/28/19 - Adam & Marty L. worked on our Grove crane.

  • LIBRARY - 3/2/19 - Bob, Mike M & Dave S. worked on ELHS archives. Ed, Diane & John worked on library projects. Steve K. worked on HDC archives. Ron & Steve M went over photo documentation for Steve's new Buffalo Railroad book.
    3/5/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Pat, Jan and Mike worked on library projects.
    3/9/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Diane, John and Pat worked on library projects. Steve worked on second floor archive cataloguing.
    3/12/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Diane, John, Chris, Jan, Mike S. and Pat worked on library projects. Ed arranged for a demonstration of a high-tech scanner. Members of the WNY Library Resources Council were invited.
    3/16/19 - Jim, Donna and Diane worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    3/19/19 - John, Chris, Pat, Mike, Jim, Donna and Diane worked on library projects.
    3/21/19 - Jim and Donna worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives. Mike Militello worked on ELHS archives.
    3/23/19 - Jim, Diane and Donna worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    3/26/19 - Jim, Mike, Pat, Jan, and Donna worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    3/30/19 - Jim, Donna & Diane worked on Library projects. Bob worked on ELHS archives. Steve worked on HDC archives.

April 2019
By Ron Dukarm

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • STEEL PLANT MUSEUM - 1st WEDNESDAY EVENT - 4/3/19 - Over 40 peole had a great time as the Steel Plant Museum hosted a road trip through history as we took a look at the Pierce Arrow Factory in Buffalo!
  • STEEL PLANT MUSEUM - NEW EXHIBIT - 4/3/19 - "Green Steel: The Environmental Impact of the Steel Industry." This exhibit is looks at the environmental side of the steel industry, how it affected the lake, the towns, and the people living and working nearby.
  • WNYRHS BOARD MEETING - 4/4/19 - The WNYRHS Board of Trustees held their monthly meeting.
  • BGS MEETING - 4/6/19 - The Buffalo Geological Society held their monthly public meeting.
  • BGS BOARD MEETING - 4/11/19 - The Buffalo Geological Society Board of Trustee's held their monthly meeting.
  • MUSEUM TOUR - 4/11/19 - The Steel Plant Museum conducted a tour of the Museum for a group of disabled visitors.
  • BIGS MEETING - 4/20/19 - The Buffalo Irish Geneological Society held their annual "Gathering of the Clans". Over 25 people attended. Lectures and computer hands-on instructed attendees on genealogy research were led by Ed and Donna.
  • SPM BOARD MEETING - 4/23/19 - The Steel Plant Museum held their monthly Board meeting.
  • MUSEUM TOUR - 4/25/19 - The Steel Plant Museum conducted a tour of the Museum for a group of disabled visitors from the ARC of Erie County.
  • HDC BOARD MEETING - 4/30/19 - The Heritage Discovery Center Board held their monthly business meeting.

DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • Ron Dukarm - donated $400 to cover the cost of emptying two trailers, three cases of soda, a case of water, 10 gallons of gas and three gallons of antifreeze. Thank You Ron!
  • Jerry Bower - donated a container of coffee and a stack of Styrofoam cups. Thank You Jerry!
  • Hugh Guillaume - donated a prospectus booklet on the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad from 1904 and four telegrams sent to the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railroad. He also donated 59 Port Colburn trolley photos, 18 steam & rail diesel car photos, six post cards, five railroad booklets, 20 railroad books, five railroad coupon bonds, three magazines, two pictures, four photo albums, a NYC switch inspector report and 100 US Geological Survey maps dating from 1897. Thank You Hugh!
  • Dave Dustman - donated a book on the "South Buffalo Railway." Thank You Dave!
  • Bob Snyder - donated two NYC excursion posters. Thank You Bob!
  • Greg Gee - donated 30 boxes of railroad magazines and books. Steve K. and Nestor A. brought two truckloads to the HDC. Thank You Greg and Steve and Nestor for your help!
  • John Blest - donated a Western Union sliding rate calculator. Thank You John!
  • Don & Barb Owens - donated a set of keys for the HDC. Thank You Don and Barb!
  • Joe Sullivan - donated a book on Ireland. Thank You Joe!
  • Kevin Walters Jr. & Sr. - donated photos, plans and historic information on the Erie Railroad Portage Bridge and secured a donation from CSX of the NYC Frontier Yard "Hump Signal." Thank You Kevin and Kevin!
  • Tom Gould - donated 20 museum quality models of WWII aircraft. Thank You Tom!
  • Anonymous - donated four NYC coffee cups, an ERIE Railroad engineers exam book and an Elesco Lighting service manual. Thank You!
  • Dave Young - donated a G&W calendar, a book "Transit Maps of the World", a book "New York City Subway Tracks," two cases of soda, a pack of paper towels, tissue and toilet paper. Thank You Dave!
  • Lynn Heintz - donated a signal flag from the Himrod, New York NYC Station, a signal cone, four stamped railroad hand tools, four marker lamps, two metal letters from the NYC Batavia, New York station, a picture that lights up, 11 books, a ream of NYC stationary and a stamp collection and album. Thank You Lynn!
  • Buffalo Geology Society - donated a NYC Railroad, New York City visitor pamphlet, eight coffee cups and a dozen boxes. Thank You BGS!
  • Tom Stackhouse - donated a new book on Pullman Porters. Thank You Tom!
  • Buffalo Irish Geneological Society - donated lunches to all HDC volunteers. Thank You BIGS!

WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS - 4/2/19 - AREA A - Mike P. and his crew started scrapping out the donated Smokin Joe's commercial ice maker. The WaterKeepers' photographer took preconstruction photos of our shoreline. RiverWorks contractors were working in Building #75. OSC's Tom Wagner was informed of all our activities in Area A.
    4/4/19 - Nestor A. policed the grounds for trash around the HDC building. Mike P. and his crew continued scrapping out the ice maker and continued to scrap out electric motors from the two 20-foot containers. RiverWorks contractors removed unused piping and brackets from roof in Building #75.
    4/11/19 - Marty L. and Don O. removed loose floor tiles from the back entrance of the Don Owens Center so new tiles can be laid. Nestor and Tony unloaded a truckload of wood from the Orchard Park Depot and placed it in the Guardhouse.
    4/16/19 - The Medaille College Fieldhouse erected in AREA E, now has a roof. The Fieldhouse is next to our Elk Street parking lot which was recently purchased by Medaille College. Clean-up of the demolished Machine Shop Building in AREA C next to our Guardhouse continues by Ontario Specialty Contracting.
    4/13/19 - Erica worked on the HDC gardens. Nestor brought a truckload of records from the Orchard Park Depot and placed them in the Hospital Building. Steve brought a truckload of records from Orchard Park and placed them in the Archive Building. Kevin Walters Jr. and Sr. prepared plans to bring the Norfolk Southern South Park Avenue bridge signals from NS yard to the HDC.
    4/18/19 - Tom Gould, Ron D., Nestor A., Steve K., Steve G., Jacob, and Mike P. and his crew cleaned out and reorganized two of the storage trailers to free up space for artifacts from the Orchard Park Depot. More work needs to be done. Tom G. removed high value items to his trailer which he brought.
    4/19/19 - Nestor A., Steve G., Mike P. and his crew continued to empty and reorganize the two storage trailers. Enough trash and rubbish was removed to fill a dump truck, and a run was made to the landfill. More aircraft models were removed to the Hospital Building. Work will continue on Saturday. Our goal is to have one trailer empty to receive the last of the artifacts from the Orchard Park Depot.
    4/20/19 - Mike P. and his crew, Nestor A. and Marty V. cleaned out more debris from the storage trailers and restacked the remaining items. They then opened the D&H boxcar and removed three large electric projector screens to HDC back hallway. Marty L. and Adam P. worked on the Grove crane and made a list of needed fluids and parts. Don Williams picked up all the metal scrap from the trailers and took it to the scrap yard. Mike P. took a truckload of garbage to the landfill.
    4/23/19 - Caryl Y., Mike S., Dave M., Bob S., Nestor A. and Jerry S. unloaded Caryl's truck of storage items from the Orchard Park Depot. A load of trash was taken to the landfill by Mike P. Artifacts were placed in the Hospital Building. Dresser records were placed in the Archive building. Don Williams took metal scrap from Area A to scrapper.

    4/25/19 - Erica did more gardening out front. Tony picked up trash around the building. Jeff worked on lawn mowers. Nestor and Jeff restacked Portage Bridge parts in Guardhouse and cleared space.
    4/27/19 - In Rm 206 (designated for the ELHS) Nestor A. and Jeff S. moved out all storage items which went to the Tool Rm, Hospital Building, Rm 160 and the Guardhouse. Two more tables were set up for magazine sorting in Rm 205. Floors were cleaned and all the trash was removed.

    4/30/19 - Jeff S. moved 1,000 magazines into the Rm 205 conference area for sorting. Nestor A. removed damaged file cabinets from the conference area. Boxes were moved from the open area and placed into rooms not assigned for ELHS space. The floors were swept.


  • ROOM 160 COMPLEX - 4/2/19 - Nestor moved furniture out of the Room 160 Complex for floor cleaning.
    4/6/19 - Barb washed the windows in the Room 160 complex.
    4/9/19 - Barb washed the blinds in the complex. Nestor removed more furniture.
    4/13/19 - Nestor cleared out the remaining furniture from the Room 160 complex.
    4/16/19 - Our contractor and Bob C. scrubbed the floors in the Rm 160 complex and applied two coats of wax.

    4/19/19 - Steve K. moved the base of a conference table into the conference room and hung closet doors.
    4/20/19 - Nestor brought in two desks. Mike P., Nestor A., Marty L., Jeff S. and Tony M. moved a large conference table top into the Conference Room from the second floor. Jeff placed 12 conference chairs around it. Jeff moved all the paint buckets and tools left in the room to the Tool Room.
    4/27/19 - Nestor A. moved the key cabinet into the security office. Jeff and Nestor moved a credenza and chairs into the reception area.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 4/2/19 - Tony did the dishes, collected the trash and cleaned the counters.
    4/4/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Tony did the dishes, collected trash and cleaned the counters. Steve K. restocked the restrooms and fixed the back door.
    4/6/19 - Tony did dishes and cleaned the counters.
    4/9/19 - Tony collected the trash. Nestor cleared out the back entrance so floor tiles can be cleaned.
    4/11/19 - Barb vacuumed the carpets. Tony did the dishes and collected more trash. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Marty L. straightened out and bolted display cases in the Meeting Room to eliminate gaps between the cases.
    4/13/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected trash. Steve packed up the magazines in the Meeting Room.
    4/16/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. The Church scrubbed and waxed the corridor floors on the second floor. We provided the Church with floor tiles and glue to replace the loose/broken tiles by their main entrance.
    4/18/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Steve K. and Jeff S. moved magazines out of the the Meeting Room. Tony collected the trash and did the dishes.
    4/19/19 - Steve set up the Meeting Room for tomorrow's "Gathering of the Clans" event, including two projector screens.
    4/20/19 - Nestor and Tony reset the Meeting Room after the Clan event. Tony did the dishes and collected the trash.
    4/23/19 - Tony collected the trash and did the dishes.
    4/25/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Barb mopped the corridors and started to set up a "Go Fund Me" account for Portage Bridge display. Tony collected the trash and did the dishes. Marty started to repair and hang our large projection screen in the Meeting Room.
    4/27/19 - Tony collected the trash, swept the floors and did the dishes. Ron and Tony reset the Meeting Room. Ron & Nestor brought a truckload of wood from Orchard Park Depot.

  • SPM/BGS EDUCATION PROJECTS - 4/16/19 - The Steel Plant Museum is proposing an education project for children. Proposal has been sent to the WNYRHS Board for consideration. The Buffalo Geology Society today proposed an education project for children whereby dump truck loads of fossil material would be dumped on the grounds and children would sort through it for fossils. Remains would be used for fill.

  • VINTAGE RAILROAD SIGNALS - 4/16/19 - Kevin Walters Jr. and Sr. informed us that they have secured three more vintage railroad signals. One is a Nickle Plate Railroad two head unit located in Portland, New York. The other two are being donated by CSX from the "Hump" in Buffalo's Frontier Yard. Thank You, CSX! They also plan to pick up the South Park Avenue Bridge signals from Norfolk Southern. The signals should arrive by the second week of May.
    4/25/19 - Kevin Walters Sr. and Jr. went to Frontier Yard and watched the CSX Signal Crew load the vintage New York Central "Hump" signal onto their flatbed trailer. They then brought it to the HDC and helped unload the signal. Many thanks to CSX and Kevin Sr. and Jr.
    4/30/19 - Nestor, Kevin Sr. and Jr. went to Portland, NY. to dismount a NKP signal which was donated to us by Robert & Roberta Patterson. When transportation is arranged it will be moved to the HDC.

  • ERIE CABOOSE at RIVERWORKS - 4/13/19 - The Eagle Scout group notified us that they are ready to paint our Erie Railroad caboose in the "Riverworks" complex and requested advice on brand and type of paints and that they need a stencil for the "ERIE" logo.

  • LIBRARY - 4/2/19 - Jim, Donna, Pat, Jan & Mike S. worked on Library projects. Mike M. worked on ELHS archives. Hugh worked on NYC archives. Jeff worked on Magazines.
    4/4/19 - Hugh worked on NYC archives. Jeff worked on Magazines. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    4/6/19 - Jim, Donna, Ed, Diane and Jim worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    4/9/19 - Jim, Donna, Ed, Pat, Jan and Mike worked on library projects. Peter worked on archives. Hugh worked on NYC records.
    4/11/19 - Ed worked on library projects. Hugh worked on NYC records.
    4/13/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, John and Diane worked on library projects.
    4/16/19 - Ed, Jim, Mike, Chris, Pat, Jan and Diane worked on library projects. Hugh worked on NYC records.
    4/18/19 - Ed, Jim, and Donna worked on library projects. Hugh worked on NYC records. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    4/20/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Mike, Jan, Pat & Diane worked on library projects. Jeff worked on magazines. Bob worked on ELRRHS archives.
    4/23/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Mike, Jan, Pat & Chris worked on library projects. Jeff worked on magazines. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    4/25/19 - Hugh worked on NYC archives. Nestor took file cabinets of Dresser material to the Map Room.
    4/27/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane and Mike worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives and Jeff S. on magazines.
    4/30/19 - Jim, Donna, Pat, Jan & Ed worked on library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives, Jeff on magazines and Hugh G. on NYC archives.

May 2019
By Ron Dukarm

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • STEEL PLANT MUSEUM - 1st WEDNESDAY EVENT - 5/1/19 - The SPM welcomed historian Greg Kinal for his talk about the Famous Women in US History. A full house attended.
  • WNYRHS BOARD MEETING - 5/2/19 - The Western New York Railway Historical Society held their monthly business meeting.
  • BGS PUBLIC MEETING - 5/4/19 - The Buffalo Geological Society held their monthly publics meeting.
  • TALK & TOUR - 5/4/19 - Ed Patton & Don Williams hosted a "Talk & Tour" on the Industrial History of Buffalo for a history class of students from Buffalo State College.
  • WNYRHS PUBLIC MEETING - 5/16/19 - The WNYRHS held their May Public Meeting. Society member Walter Simpson presented a wonderful presentation of his newly published book on diesel locomotives. Caryl and Joe hosted. Leslie and Barb sold refreshments. Tony Martinez was recognized with a certificate for his volunteer efforts over the past year. Tony has logged 150 days at the HDC, Thank you for all your support!

  • B&S MEETING - 5/18/19 - The HDC hosted an organizing meeting of the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railway Historical Society annual convention scheduled at the HDC in August. Joe, Leslie and Hugh represented the HDC.
  • SPM BOARD MEETING - 5/21/19 - The Steel Plant Museum Board held their monthly business meeting.
  • HDC BOARD MEETING - 5/28/19 - The HDC Board held their monthly business meeting.
  • WNYRCP MEETING - 5/28/19 - The Western New York Rail Corridor Project Committee held a meeting. Ed attended representing the HDC.
  • FISHER-PRICE MEETING - 5/30/19 - The HDC hosted an all day marketing meeting for Thomas & Friends© with a nationwide representatives attending. Ron D. and Steve K. did a talk and tour of the museum and Leslie K. provided lunch and refreshments. Joe K. made arrangements with Fisher-Price for future meetings.

DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • Jeff Silverthorn - donated four quarts of transmission fluid, four quarts of gear oil, one quart of brake fluid, two 1 gallon gasoline containers and a gallon of antifreeze. Thank you Jeff!
  • Ron Dukarm - donated a belt for one of our lawn tractors, three gallons of antifreeze, an Erie Railroad retirement plaque, a bag of cans, a set of concrete anchor screws, a 4'x8' sheet of wall board, three 8' boards, six cans of paint, a trap for the sink, a case of water, a box of drywall screws and a bucket of drywall compound. Thank you Ron!
  • Steve Kocsis - donated a snow blower. Thank you Steve!
  • Anne Brown - donated 17 New York Central artifacts, papers and photos. Thank you Anne!
  • Mike Pietrocarlo - donated electrical wire for our projection screens. Thank you Mike!
  • Marty Laurie - donated door stop and door guides for closet doors. Thank you Marty!
  • Carl Ambuske - donated paint for the Fire House, all the lumber needed to rebuild three picnic tables and a new battery for the cordless drill. Thank you Carl!
  • Cindy Chan - donated a Lego caboose diorama. Thank you Cindy!
  • Barb Owens - donated a can of coffee, a case of water and a box of contractor bags. Thank you Barb!
  • Amtrak© - notified the WNYRHS, that they are donating a stainless steel baggage car, #1247, that was recently taken out of service. It used to run on the Lake Shore Limited past the HDC on a regular basis. It is in ready to run condition.Thank you Amtrak©!!!
  • Thomas Zimmerman - donated a Penn-Central conductor uniform. Thank you Tom!
  • Robert & Roberta Patterson - donated a NKP signal, a NKP crossbuck post, and 26 various other items including, lanterns, oil cans, locomotive lights, lenses, etc. Thank you Robert & Roberta!
  • Patricia Keller - donated two PRR lanterns, a railroad book, and four photos. Thank you Patricia!
  • Noel Varela - donated three boxes of coffee filters. Thank you Noel!
  • Hugh Guillaume - donated 47 US Geological maps. Thank you Hugh!

WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS - 5/2/19 - Waste Management emptied our dumpster. Nestor and Jeff put out two picnic tables and a hose. Push mowers will now be stored in the Pump House to make space in the Guardhouse. Mike organized the Guardhouse by restacking and moving items. Nestor removed five broken file cabinets from the second floor and these were scrapped by Don Williams. City of Buffalo Inspector did a review of our elevator. He switched out a sensor light for a toggle switch, bringing us into compliance. Everything A-OK.
    5/4/19 - Mike cut the old lock off the Elk Street lot gate and installed our standard gate lock. Medaille College tore down our easterly fence and constructed a temporary fence while doing trench work. Carl A. surveyed the Fire Shed and picnic tables for repair work. Jeff moved mowers, spreaders and snow blowers to the Pump House for storage and repair. Nester placed work bench and a cabinet in the Pump house for a work site. Mike further reorganized Guardhouse to make for more room.
    5/7/19 - A WaterKeepers' photographer continued his photo survey of Area A. Mike picked up scrap and trash in Area B. Nestor, Jeff and Mike organized the Tool and Shower Rooms and moved storage items to the Guardhouse, Pump House and Hospital Building. Trash and recycle items were taken to the landfill.
    5/9/19 - Mike P picked up scrap & trash in Area B and made two runs to the landfill. Jeff cut all the lawns around the HDC building. Carl strengthened the joints on two picnic tables. Jeff retrieved all snow stakes around the grounds. Dumpster was picked up by Waste Management. Marty installed a new door stop in Rm 160.
    5/11/19 - Nestor weed-wacked around the HDC building. Erica weeded front gardens and pulled brush and weeds up to South Park Avenue. Erica and Nestor placed several bags of mulch in gardens. Tony picked up and disposed of all garden debris. Carl painted the Fire House. Don Williams took a broken mower for scrapping. Baggage carts were moved to the sidewalks. Marty filled the Grove crane with anti-freeze. Steve emptied three gallons of water from the dehumidifier in the  Hospital Building.
    5/14/19 - Jeff S. and Jerry B. removed the door from Steve Koenig's old office and demolished the wall. This space will become the new ELHS file room. Mike P. provided the power tools. Jeff removed all the debris and placed it in the dumpster. Carl measured picnic table dimensions in order to replace all the legs. City of Buffalo Plumbing inspector checked our back-flow valve in Rm 160 Complex and certified compliance. Marty installed a small projection screen in the Rm 160 Conference Room. Ron moved paper products into the lateral filing cabinets in the Reception area.
    5/16/19 - Waste Management picked up the dumpster. Jeff cut all the grass around the HDC building. Nestor weed-wacked all borders. Don Williams picked up a truckload of metal scrap for recycling. Erica weeded the front gardens and Tony disposed of all the debris.
    5/18/19 - Mike and his crew continued to scrap out the ice making machine in Area A. Don Williams picked up a truckload of metal scrap for recycling. Carl finished painting the fire shed. Carl started disassembling the picnic tables to replace weakened members. Jeff loaded Don's truck with brush and garden debris for disposal.
    5/21/19 - Carl started to rebuild a picnic table. Nestor and Steve brought over six map filing cabinets from the Hospital Building and started painting the cases. Nestor cleared out the large archive room in the Hospital Building of all wheeled storage items and started to erect new shelving. Kevin Walters Jr. and Sr. arrived with a NKP signal and cross-buck post. These were unloaded by Nestor on the forklift and both Kevin's doing the rigging and ground work.
    5/23/19 - Carl completed rebuilding one picnic table. Jeff cut all grass around the HDC building. Don Williams took a truckload of scrap for recycling.
    5/25/19 - Nestor and Bob rebuilt the ceiling beam where the wall was torn down on second floor. Nestor added new drywall to the beam and end supports. Carl assembled and painted one picnic table.
    5/28/19 - Carl applied a second coat of stain to the picnic table. Nestor finished wall board and applied drywall compound to the new construction in the old office. OSC Contractor delivered more fill material to the Area A parking lot.
    5/30/19 - Jeff cut all the front lawns. Adam cut all the back lawns. Nestor and Tony put out our refurbished picnic table. Marty placed new floor tiles where Koenig's old wall was demolished.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 5/2/19 - Marty installed two 8-foot projection screens in the Meeting Room. Mike, Jeff & Nestor brought three white lateral filing cabinets from the Hospital Building and placed them in the Rm 160 complex. Ron and Nestor reorganized the Kitchen, placed all storage items on shelves and removed nine trash containers. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Tony did the dishes and collected the trash.
    5/4/19 - Tony did the dishes and took out the trash. The piano was moved into the Room 160 complex to make for more room in the Meeting Room. Four storage items were moved from the Shower Room to the Hospital Building. Nestor removed the plugged drain in the Bar Room sink.
    5/7/19 - Tony did the dishes and took out the trash. Large ELHS file cabinet was moved to ELHS space. Two desks were placed on the second floor for new tenants. Barb went over accounting items with Mike P. Mike is searching for wiring for the large projection screens.
    5/9/19 - Tony did the dishes and took out the trash. Nestor, Jerry and Ron organized the Tool and Shower Rooms. Most of the Tool Room is cleaned out and ready for shelving and archives. Marty wired the two projection screens in the Meeting Room. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Mike P. and Nestor placed two more lateral filing cabinets in the Rm 160 complex. Tony cleaned the filing cabinets in Rm 160. Mike G. delivered 100 Railway Flyers for handouts.
    5/11/19 - Nestor, Jeff and Ron cleared out remaining tables, tools, cabinets and supplies out of the Tool Room and placed them in appropriate buildings. The Tool Room is now ready for archives. Steve and Ron identified two wooden doors with windows in the Hospital Building to use for ELHS space and new conference room. Tony did the dishes and took out the trash.
    5/14/19 - Marty finished wiring the projection screens in the Meeting Room and they are now working. Nestor set up shelves in the Shower Room. Nestor and Ron removed the final storage items from the Tool Room and it is now ready for archive shelving. Barb restocked the restrooms and took cans/bottles for recycling. Marty and Barb checked the Church area and placed tiles and adhesive in the Church to repair the floor near the entrance.
    5/16/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the shower room floors. Mike and Nestor moved two wooden doors to the second floor from the Hospital Building. Tony did the dishes and took out the trash. Ron hung a picture in Rm 160 and setup a laptop computer.
    5/18/19 - Steve removed the hanging electrical outlet in the second floor ceiling and rewired it into the overhead system. Jeff cleaned a metal shelf in the Shower Room and reset shelves. Nestor and Jeff brought over 40 map drawers from the Hospital Building for cleaning and painting. Tony did the dishes and took out the trash.
    5/23/19 - Barb swept the floors. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the floors. Tony did the dishes and took out the trash.
    5/25/19 - Ron restocked hand out racks. Tony did the dishes and watered the plants.
    5/28/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Marty applied leveling compound to back hallway. Jeff cleaned and painted six map cabinets.
    5/30/19 - Jeff cleaned and painted six more map drawers. Tony watered the plants and collected trash.


  • HOSPITAL BUILDING - 5/23/19 - Jeff S., Ron D., Nestor A. and Jerry B. set up new shelving able to hold 180 banker boxes. Nestor emptied the dehumindifier.
    5/25/19 - Jeff continued to erect new 10 foot high shelving.
    5/28/19 - Jeff erected cross-bracing on all shelves and emptied the dehumidifier.

  • MECHANICAL - 5/4/19 - Jeff S. installed a new belt on the riding mower. Marty and Adam filled crane with gas and anti-freeze.
    5/11/19 - Jeff repaired two mowers and set up a repair shop in the Pump House.

  • LIBRARY - 5/2/19 - Hugh G. worked on NYC archives.
    5/4/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane & Ed worked on Library projects. Steve K. worked on archives.
    5/7/19 - Jim, Donna, Pat, Jan, Chris & Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives. Jim working on Soul book collection to identify sale items. Geology books have been segregated for sale.
    5/9/19 - Jim, Donna, Mike S & Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    5/11/19 - Jim & Donna worked on Library projects.
    5/14/19 - Mike S, Pat, Jan, Jim & Donna worked on Library projects. Hugh G. worked on NYC archives and found a huge file full of information on NYC pensioners that those folks dug right into. It was in a box full of bridge repair reports! More than likely there will be additional discoveries as we work our way through the banker's boxes. It is very rewarding when such things are discovered and makes the time all the more worthwhile! The folks who process and enter all the data deserve a lot of credit.
    5/16/19 - Jim & Donna worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    5/18/19 - Diane, Pat, Jim & Donna worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    5/21/19 - Diane, Pat, Mike, Chris, John, Ed, Jan, Jim & Donna worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives. John S worked on NKP archives.
    5/23/19 - BIGS staff worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    5/25/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane & Ed worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    5/28/19 - Jan, Pat, Donna, Chris, Mike & Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    5/30/19 - Donna, Jim & Ed worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.

June 2019
By Ron Dukarm

COMMUNITY OUTREACH - The Heritage Discovery Center continues to host local community events and has become the meeting place for all of our affiliate partners.
  • TALL SHIPS MEETING - 6/1/19 - Joe K. and Ed P. met with representatives of the Tall Ships Committee who invited the HDC to be part of the VIP area with a tent, and displays promoting the HDC and rail excursions.
    6/20/19 - We hosted another planning meeting with the Tall Ships Committee involving the U S Coast Guard. Mike and Ed attended.
  • STEEL PLANT MUSEUM - 1st WEDNESDAY EVENT - 6/5/19 - William Faught took us on a virtual tour of Allentown. A large crowd was very pleased with the presentation.
  • TALK & TOUR - 6/6/19 - The Steel Plant Miseum conducted a talk and tour of the museum for a vanload of seniors from the Elderwood facility in Hamburg.
  • WNYRHS BOARD MEETING - 6/6/19 - The WNYRHS Board held their monthly board meeting.
  • B&S MEETING - 6/15/19 - Joe K., Ed P. & Steve K. attended the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railway Historical Society Convention Committee meeting making final plans for convention at the HDC in August.
  • ORCHARD PARK DEPOT MEETING - 6/18/19 - Ed P. met with Bob Snyder to draw up a plan of how to move the large and heavy Buffalo Creek tower switch machine from Orchard Park to the HDC.
  • TALK & TOUR - 6/20/19 - The Steel Plant Miseum conducted a tour for a bus load of senior citizens from Catholic Health Services.
  • SPM BOARD MEETING - 6/25/19 - The Steel Plant Museum held their monthly Board meeting.
  • HDC BOARD MEETING - 6/25/19 - The Heritage Discovery Center Board held their monthly board meeting.

DONATIONS - We have received the following donations of artifacts and supplies. Our sincere thanks to all our loyal supporters:
  • Ed Patton - donated a gas grill and propane. Thank You Ed!
  • Mike Pietrocarlo - donated 100 feet of BX electrical cable and various connection components and informed us he will sell the remaining Smokin Joes donations. Thank You Mike!
  • Hugh Guillaume - donated a B&W photo album of NYC steam & diesel photos in the Buffalo area from the John Baker Collection. Thank You Hugh!
  • Bill Zona - donated a spike puller. Thank You Bill!
  • Barb & Don Owens - donated two boxes of paper towels, a case of water, a lock, an amber lens and a soil chart. Thank You Barb and Don!
  • Ron Dukarm - donated five rolls of colored duct tape, two cases of water, a selection of bolts, nuts and screws, 12 gallons of gas, a gallon of two cycle gas, floor wax, two mop heads, a box of bolts, a 4x8 sheet of drywall, a gallon of motor oil and a case of soda. Thank You Ron!
  • Mike Malyak - donated three railroad books and various railroad clippings. Thank You Mike!
  • Fisher Price - donated several dozen Thomas the Tank Engine© toys. Thank you Fisher Price!
  • Steve Kocsis - donated a large box of snacks and two stainless steel salad bowels. Thank you Steve!
  • Dave Young - donated a case of water and soda. Thank You Dave!
  • Elizabeth Phillips - donated a 53-foot tractor trailer which we will use for the emptying of Building #82. Thank You Elizabeth!
  • Anonymous Donors- one donated track plans for the Buffalo Creek Railroad and Conrail paperwork and another two full conductors uniforms plus two overcoats through the efforts of Bob Snyder. Thank you!
  • Carl Ambuske - donated an industrial push broom. Thank You Carl!
  • Devan Lawton - donated a massive collection of railroadianna and railroad documents. Four truck loads were moved by Caryl A., Ed P., Marty V. and Steve K. on Wednesday the 26th. A complete inventory will be made. Thank You Devan!!!

WORK ACCOMPLISHED
  • BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS - 6/1/19 - Nestor cut half of the lawn in Area B with our Jacobson gang mower. A dozen old shelving units were removed from Hospital Building and placed under the trailers for trailer use.
    6/4/19 - Nestor cut remaining half of Area B grass with the Jacobson gang mower. Mike removed an old wooden desk to Ed's house. The WaterKeeper's photographer took his continuing series of construction photos in Area A. Our neighbor, Ontario Specialty Contracting filed a plan for Area C Powerhouse to the City Planning Board last night. It will include corporate offices for OSC plus a banquet facility with parking for 190 cars.
    6/8/19 - Nestor cut half of the Area A lawn.
    6/11/19 - Tony watered the plants. Nestor cut the grass around the HDC and weed-wacked all the edges.
    6/18/19 - Nestor A. cut the front lawns and Jerry B. cut the back lawns. Tony watered the gardens. Mike Pietrocarlo delivered the 53' donated trailer to Building #82.
    6/20/19 - Nestor cut the lawns behind the HDC building and next to the Pump House. Ed and Ron inspected newly donated 53-ft. trailer. The body is water-tight and the doors open easily. We parked it next to Building #82. A new 8-yard dumpster was delivered by WM.
    6/22/19 - Tony watered the gardens. Nestor cut the lawn by the Guardhouse, Pumphouse, and by our railroad cars. He also weed-wacked all the edges out front and around the HDC building. Ron put a chain and lock on the trailer. Don Williams cut up an old metal shelf for scrap.
    6/25/19 - Jerry B. mowed the lawn in front of the HDC.
    6/27/19 - Tony watered the gardens. Nestor A. and Jeff S. spent the entire day cutting grass in Area A.
    6/29/19 - Tony watered the gardens. Nestor cut more grass in Area A.

  • HOUSEKEEPING - 6/1/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Jeff S. cleaned and painted six more map drawers. Nestor finished the wall board and drywall compound on the second floor office work. Tony changed the prices on 500 old brochures. The Dunkirk Rail Museum dropped off hand-outs and notices.
    6/4/19 - Tony watered the plants and collected the trash. The SPM brought in additional chairs and set up the Meeting Room for their First Wednesday program. Nestor sanded and applied another coat of joint compound on the second floor office work. Three checks were received for the B&S Convention registration.
    6/6/19 - Barb swept the floors in the Meeting Room. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the corridors.
    6/8/19 - Barb cleaned the countertops. Tony did the dishes, collected the trash and watered the plants. Steve K. built a base for the map cabinets. Paul Mayer made up an "ERIE" railroad stencil for the caboose and delivered it to the Eagle Scout group.
    6/11/18 - Barb cleaned the countertops. Tony did the dishes, collected the trash.
    6/13/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the corridors. Don picked up the mail.
    6/15/19 - Tony did the dishes, watered the plants and collected the trash. Ron hung an Erie Railroad employee biography at the Roll of Honor. Steve built a base and top for a map cabinet. Nestor A. and Tony M. moved 30 map cabinet drawers to the second floor to the Map Room.
    6/18/19 - Nestor moved NYC boxes to the Hospital Building.Tony did the dishes, watered the plants and collected the trash. Don picked up the mail.
    6/20/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Don picked up the mail. Barb stored restroom supplies. Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the corridors. Jerry B. sorted and boxed duplicate magazines for storage in the Hospital Building.
    6/22/19 - Don & Ron did a safety inspection of the Archive Building. Joe picked up the mail.Nestor emptied the dehumidifier in the Hospital Building.
    6/25/19 - Tony did the dishes and collected the trash. Our plumber fixed the sink in the Bar Room. Jeff swept and mopped the floors in the Hospital Building and emptied the dehumidifier.
    6/27/19 - Our contractor cleaned the restrooms and mopped the corridors. Tony did the dishes and collected the trash.
    6/29/19 - Nestor emptied the dehumidifier in the Hospital Building. Joe delivered 30,000 brochures for the Tall Ships Festival. Tony did the dishes and collected the trash.

  • MECHANICAL - 6/8/19 - Marty and Adam worked on the Grove crane.
    6/29/19 - Nestor did a repair on the Jacobson mower and changed the oil.

  • HOSPITAL BUILDING - 6/4/19 - Jeff erected more shelving and emptied dehumidifier. Jeff and Jerry rearranged boxes on pallet shelving and moved boxes to top shelf. Don Williams removed scrap metal for recycling.
    6/6/19 - Jeff erected more shelving and emptied dehumidifier. Tony cleaned and mopped floors. Nestor and Jeff brought over about 300 banker boxes of NYC, EL and WNYRHS admin archives from the Archive Building. Ron colored coded the boxes for ready identification.
    6/11/19 - Jeff erected more shelving in the new archive room and emptied the dehumidifier. Nestor restacked library shelving, placed a desk in the Archive Room and removed rolling scaffolding and work bench. Don Williams picked up miscellaneous scrap from the building.
    6/13/19 - Jeff anchored shelving in new archive room, emptied the dehumidifier and mopped the floors. Nestor and Jerry restacked banker boxes and other storage to clear three racks of pallet shelving. Ron color coded more boxes.
    6/15/19 - A research table and a desk were added and cleaned. Nestor and Ron restacked three rooms to make space for artifacts from the Orchard Park Depot. The dehumidifier was emptied.
    6/18/19 - Jeff anchored more shelving to the walls. Nestor filled the shelves with NYC files. Ron color-coded more banker boxes. The dehumidifier was emptied.
    6/20/19 - Jeff anchored more shelving to the walls, swept the floors and removed loose ceiling tiles. Nestor filled the shelves with boxes of magazines. Ron posted color-coded signs to show locations of archive groups. The dehumidifier was emptied.

  • NKP RAILROAD SIGNALS - 6/4/19 - Kevin Walters Sr., Kevin Jr. and Nestor Arauz went to Portland, NY to pick up the NKP signal donated by Robert & Roberta Patterson off their property. The Patterson's also donated 26 NKP artifacts received in May. Thank you again Robert and Roberta! We used or forklift to unload the signals at the HDC and moved them to storage.

  • ERIE CABOOSE - 6/1/19 - Ron received the final Eagle Scout Plan for painting the caboose and signed off on approval. Painting will start later this summer.
    6/22/19 - Here is our Erie caboose C-216 now located at Silo City in downtown Buffalo. The caboose was painted by Eagle Scout Cordell Reynolds and three of his fellow scouts.


  • ORCHARD PARK DEPOT STORAGE - 6/21/19 - Caryl Y., Nestor A., Jim S., Bob S., Dave M. and Don O. unloaded items from the baggage car, freighthouse and boxcar in Orchard Park to be stored in our new 53-foot trailer in Area A. Caryl donated the use of his truck. The move took six hours. The trailer had to be moved so Nestor lifted one end with our forklift and Caryl pushed it with his truck. The truck was backed up to the trailer and items were moved from the truck to the trailer at the same level. A very tough job, done well.

  • LIBRARY - 6/1/19 - Diane & Ed worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives. Steve & Nestor moved 3 map cabinets into the Map Room.
    6/4/19 - Jim, Donna, John, Mike, Chris, Pat, Jan & Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    6/6/19 - Jim, Donna, & Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    6/8/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane, John & Ed worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    6/11/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane, Mike, Pat and Jan worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC records.
    6/13/19 - Jim, Donna and Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC records.
    6/15/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane and Ed worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives.
    6/18/19 - Jim, Donna, Diane. Mike, Pat, Chris and Ed worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives.
    6/20/19 - Jim and Ed worked on Library projects. Jerry sorted and boxed magazines. Peter worked on archives.
    6/21/19 - Jim and Ed worked on Library projects.
    6/22/19 - Diane worked on Library projects. Steve worked on HDC archives. Jeff cleaned map cabinets.
    6/25/19 - Ed, Jim, Donna, Mike, Pat, Jan & Chris worked on Library projects. Steve worked on archives by moving boxes from the second floor to the Archive Building.
    6/27/19 - Jim & Donna worked on Library projects. Hugh worked on NYC archives, John on NKP archives, Bob on ELHS archives.
    6/29/19 - Jim, Ed, Diane & Donna worked on Library projects. Steve worked on archives, Shelia on Magazine Project.

    HDC 2nd Floor Research Library Corner by: Donna M Shine

    For those who are unaware, we have a research library on the second floor of the Heritage Discovery Center, maintained by  BIGS (the Buffalo Irish Genealogical Society)  As Librarian, Vice President and one of the three co-founders of "BIGS" and life member of the Western New York Railway Historical Society, I answer directly to Ed Patton, Trustee of the WNYRHS and BIGS president who is a "jack of all trades" and "master of all" too, or there about!

    We have a small cadre of BIGS and WNYRHS volunteers who have aided in accomplishing some of our finest works such as the Erie and New York Central personnel indexes plus cataloging, covering and labeling donated books on the shelves.

    WNYRHS archivist, Steve Kocsis, constantly brings in donated books that are accessioned with identification labels for referencing donors. With Ed's guidance and suggestions, our library had taken shape over the last several years. Like a great symphony, Ed is the composer of the music; conveying and creating the WNYRHS library ideas so people will be proud to enjoy to its fullest. I am the conductor of the symphony; I interpret Ed's ideas and coordinate the volunteers who carry out those ideas set forth that best suit their abilities for accomplishing those goals. And the ever-evolving result is the music; a presentable library where researchers can come in and find the chaotic donations, pieced together and organized for their use and interpretations.

    Our public hours are limited to the 1st & 2nd Saturdays of each month plus 3rd Tuesdays of each month from 11:00am - 3:00pm, October thru June. Sadly, due to lack of volunteers, we must hold to these hours. You can find many of us most Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays working on projects to better our resources for the public. If you are in the HDC building, please stop in for quick look-see.

August 2019

HDC 2nd Floor Research Library Corner by: Donna M Shine

So, you like trains, and you have already visited the Western New York Railway Historical Society and the Steel Plant Museum at 100 Lee Street in Buffalo. You may have even heard of "BIGS," the Buffalo Irish Genealogical Society and rumor has it that "they" run the Library upstairs on the second floor. Wait, you mean there's an UPSTAIRS for visitors too? Absolutely!

Yes, Virginia, there really is a Santa Claus and yes, railroaders, there really is a research library upstairs on the second floor of the same building, and it is handicap accessible by taking the elevator. The library is at the end of the hall on the right, as you leave the elevator, maintained by  BIGS  (the Buffalo Irish Genealogical Society)  Anytime you see lights on in the library, visitors are very welcome to stop in, sign our register and be given a short tour. Don't worry if the sign says "CLOSED," we never turn anybody away. It only means that we did not advertise to the public that we would be open. You may see volunteers working on projects like indexing cemetery records or cataloging books. Most volunteers are members of BIGS. If you are accompanied by a youngster who loves trains, you might even leave with a souvenir book of one of our many duplicates that have been donated. You would be amazed.

Buffalo & Susquehanna Railway Symposium
By Joe Kocsis

The Heritage Discovery Center hosted a weekend-long symposium this past on August 2nd through the 4th to explore the fascinating history of the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railway's Buffalo Extension and the involvement of the Goodyear Brothers. This was the last major railroad to reach Buffalo in 1906 and the first to be abandoned and scrapped in 1917.

This was the third installment of the Symposium with the first two delving into the history of the railroad, coal and lumber interests of the Goodyears in Northwestern Pennsylvania. After nearly a year of planning, a group of nearly 40 historians came together at the Heritage Discovery Center in August to learn about the intricacies of the construction, operation and eventual demise of the B&S Railway's 85-mile extension of the railroad from Wellsville to Buffalo.

Our Symposium weekend started out on Friday, August 2nd, with an all-day bus/rail tour over the Arcade & Attica and Buffalo Southern Railroad. Our charter bus departed from the museum at 8am for our first stop at North Java to ride over the line of the Arcade & Attica RR from North Java to Arcade Jct. This railroad was once controlled by the Goodyear Family interests and part of the line between Arcade and the junction is actually former B&S Railway trackage.

The train stopped at the Curriers Depot to allow passengers to photograph the train and tour the depot displays. We continued on to the Arcade Depot for another stop for the passengers to visit the A&A's Gift Shop. Reboarding our special train, we travelled past the A&A engine house, the former B&S depot on Park Street, and over the former B&S track to Arcade Junction.

At 12:30, after distributing our boxed lunches, (Thanks to Devan Lawton & Caryl Youngers), our bus, with 48 passengers, traveled west to North Collins for our next train ride over the former Erie Buffalo & Southwestern Division.. We arrived at the boarding site in North Collins just as the Buffalo, Cattaraugus & Jamestown Scenic Ry train was backing in to pick up our passengers.

At 12:30, after distributing our boxed lunches, our bus, with 48 passengers, traveled west to North Collins for our next train ride over the former Erie Buffalo & Southwestern Division.. We arrived at the boarding site in North Collins just as the Buffalo, Cattaraugus & Jamestown Scenic Railway train was backing in to pick up our passengers.

Several passengers were already onboard the train riding down from Hamburg. The train, owned and operated by the BC&J, operates special excursions over the Buffalo Southern Railroad using BSOR locomotives and crews. Today, BSOR Alco #1847 was to pull our four-car train north over this former Erie trackage to the end of the line at Buffalo Creek Jct. (CP DRAW) in Buffalo.

Our interest in train ride over the Buffalo Southern was the fact that for a short time in 1906, before the B&S RY track construction was completed in Buffalo, the B&S trains used trackage rights over the Erie RR from Goodyear Jct, located just north of the current Hamburg Fairgrounds to gain access to their yards in Blasdell, and also used the Erie's Passenger Station on Exchange Street for their passenger trains.

Once the connection to the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern was completed at Milestrip Road in Blasdell, the B&S trains used their own trackage from Hamburg to Buffalo. The bridge abutments that carried the B&S line over the Erie at Hamburg are still there, just a short distance from the Fairgrounds Road crossing. Our train continued north on the line to Buffalo passing the Eden & Hamburg Depots on our way to Buffalo Creek Junction.

At Lake Avenue in Blasdell, the train stopped and waited for our green signal allowing our train to pass over the diamond at old GB Jct where the Erie line crossed at grade over the old Pennsylvania and Nickel Plate Road mainline now operated by Norfolk Southern. After a 20-minute wait, were received permission to continue our train ride to Buffalo. Once we crossed the diamonds, the engine ran around the train and pushed us the rest of the way to the junction where the BSOR interchanges with the Class 1 railroads.

Arriving back at Hamburg, we board our bus for the quick trip back to the museum and a picnic cookout.

On Saturday & Sunday, our activities were centered at the HDC. A big thank you to all the speakers for their great presentations on the history of the Goodyears, the railway construction, the founding of their steel plant, construction of the Union Ship Canal, as well as a short presentation on the B&S Steamship Co. that they formed to ship coal & coke across the Great Lakes, as well as their Mining and Lumber interest in Minnesota & Louisiana. The discussions were lively and as many questions were answered, more questions arose about this fascinating line.

November 2019

HDC 2nd Floor Research Library Corner by: Donna M Shine
Erie RR Personnel - John J. Hennessy as would have been told by himself.

Hello there. Me name's John Joseph Hennessy. An Erie Railroad Application for Employment lists meself as being born April 26th, 1866, in Ireland. Then, earlier in the 1900 US Federal Census, me thinks I mighta said I was born in June of 1867. Sometimes, I'd say I was born in New York to make things process a little easier. All I be knowin' for sure is County Clare, Ireland 'tis me home and that of me wife, Margaret's Boland family, they come from Kilrush there. I was a mere five feet seven inches tall, I was, and weighed in at 175 pounds and had brown hair in my youth and the greyest of grey eyes. I just came t' life when someone pulled the employment record belonging to meself, right outta the archived files at the Heritage Discovery Center at 100 Lee Street, here in Buffalo, NY.

Me files have original employment applications with supporting references. One, I signed way back on the 3rd day of September in the year 1910. You see, I was applyin' for a Stationary Engineer position with the Erie Railroad Company. If the truth be told, I actually worked me way as a young lad from a crew member on great ocean freighters to first mate, before coming to Buffalo in 1883.

I worked in the Buffalo Car Shop of the Erie Railroad Company until May of 1909. Then wanted a promotion to be a stationary engineer there. Can ye believe that I worked 206 hours for $0.20 per hour and got paid $41.20? A decent wage, it was, I suppose. Times were tough and you took whatever job ye could find in a new homeland. Why, between 1903 an' 1909, I worked for companies like Pickands & Mather, Wickwire Co., American Malting Co. and the Sibley Holmwood Company. I even worked a spell for the Lackawanna Steel Company under Mr. Gillman before working at the railroad. There's a handwritten note still in me file, from meself to the railroad timekeeper, Mr. L.W. Brown, dated April 14, 1909... in script with me own signature, to boot!

I had t' support my wife and the wee ones. We'd eight kids ta feed. Let's see now, there's Margaret, Mary, James T., Ann, Daniel John, and Patrick Joseph. Oh yeah, there's Helen and Thomas P., too, making it eight. We had eight, but young Margaret and Patrick Joseph didn't quite make it to be grown ups. We all lived at 87 Louisiana Street in Buffalo, NY, fer a spell, right next door to Mr. Michael Regan, the Superintendent o' the Buffalo Police Department. I used 'im as a reference to get me promotion.

I could go on and on talkin' 'bout meself, but one last thing or two: I ended up buying our home at 28 Alsace Avenue and I got back t' me sailing before dying August 30, 1953, as a retired Great Lakes captain in the service of the old Boland line. So, should ye come lookin' for meself or others, we'll be hidin' in the archive files down at the HDC.
The Research Library is on the second floor of the Heritage Discovery Center, maintained by  BIGS (the Buffalo Irish Genealogical Society). The Library will be open: December 7th, 14th and 17th, 2019. 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

Contact Us: Orchard Park - 716-662-7002     Williamsville - 716-633-7002
WNYHDC Inc., 100 Lee Street, Buffalo, New York  14210 - 716-821-9360
All Donations to the Heritage Discovery Center are Tax-Deductible!

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This page was last updated: November 18th, 2019

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