North Texas Historic Transportation
Posted 03 May 2004 - 01:20 AM
In February, NTHT was one of 9 organizations out of 90 applicants selected to have our website redesigned by Texas Christian University seniors for a class project. While sporting a new, brighter appearance and intuitive menus, the website also has a spectacular backend design that will allow for easier revisions, online membership applications and overall improved performance.
Some minor revisions to the image library and captions are ongoing, but feel free to have a look.
Our thanks to the Veriti group at TCU!
Posted 08 February 2006 - 08:51 PM
Work continues on the preparation of the former Chicago Transit Authority trucks (wheel sets) which will be used under the M&O Subway car to be displayed at the Leonard’s Department Store Museum. The first truck has had its motors removed, excess grease and rust have been scraped off and the entire assembly has been transported to the yard at El Paso Street. While at El Paso Street, the truck was power washed in the wash bay at the T’s bus maintenance facility. Our sincere appreciation goes to the T for their assistance with this project. The truck frame will be treated with a rust converter to stabilize any remaining rust and will probably already be primed and painted by the time this report is printed. The second truck has had its motors removed and is awaiting stripping of heavy rust and grease prior to being removed to the El Paso Street yard. Work on this truck progresses at the future display site next to the Leonard’s Department Store Museum at 200 Carroll Street. Since the opening of the museum, the work days at the future display site have shifted to Mondays to reduce congestion and interference with museum operations. Some work occurs on Saturdays and Sundays depending on the availability of volunteers. To help work on the trucks, please contact Gabby Garbarino (817) 294-0465. Work days continue to be held at the El Paso Street yard site on Tuesdays to finish the final touches on interurban car No. 411 and other projects at that site. A full accounting of names of volunteers who have participated in the preparation of these trucks will be given in the next newsletter.
As we look back on our efforts over the past ten years, it can be noted that our progress towards streetcar restoration appears to be slow. Most of our efforts have been directed towards the completion of the T’s interurban cars or the acquisition and relocation of a considerable part of the assets of the Tandy Subway. It is with great pleasure that we announce the official kickoff of our Car No. 560 Project. Car 560 is an original Fort Worth streetcar known as a Birney Safety Car. It was built by the American Car Company in St Louis, Missouri and was completed in September of 1920. The streetcar was part of an order of 25 additional cars which joined the 50 Birney cars already on Fort Worth’s roster. This style of car was a revolutionary change in the design of streetcars with its lightweight, all-steel construction, safety devices to allow one-man operation and efficient lightweight electric motors. Ultimately, close to 6000 cars of the Birney design were produced and used by streetcar lines around the United States and several foreign countries.
Fort Worth was at the forefront of transit research in the late teens and early twenties. Northern Texas Traction was the third city to have Birney cars, the first city to order double-ended cars, and the first city to fully equip a streetcar line with Birneys. Reviewing old copies of NTT’s newsletter reveals photos of the diminutive streetcars painted or decorated to celebrate Christmas, to draw attention to the Community Chest fundraising efforts, and rally boosters of TCU and Northside High School. The TCU car featured a purple paint scheme stenciled with Horned Frogs on the side. Upon decommissioning in 1934, Car 560 was included in a group of 6 cars that were sold to a handyman in Odessa, Texas. Four of the cars were built into an apartment in Odessa and the remaining two, 557 and 560 were used as portable workshops in the area until being built into a house in Andrews, Texas where they were rediscovered in 1996. 557 was donated by Dr. George Sokol to the Old Pueblo Trolley and awaits restoration at their storage yard.
The first phase of the restoration of our car will deal with one of the most difficult parts to obtain or reproduce, the journal box. Our car was equipped with a truck known as a Brill 79E1 and, like so many other streetcars at the time of salvage, the body was sold and the truck was cut up for scrap. Motors can be found; wheels, axles, brake rigging and frames can be reproduced, but to replicate the correct appearance and function of a Brill 79E1 truck requires a cast journal box.
To help reach our goal for the first phase of this campaign, we have applied for a $5000 grant which we understand that we are highly likely to receive. The grant requires a local match of $5000, so the final amount is $10,000. Unfortunately, the match is not allowed to be contributed by our members, it must come from outside the organization. In addition to the grant money, we have been in communication with other organizations that have Birney bodies with no truck. We have identified 8 interested organizations with a need for 10 trucks. We would like to share the cost of the patternmaking with the other organizations and work as a team to produce the necessary parts.
Campaign Goals: Ultimately we will need approximately $150,000 to complete the restoration of Car No. 560. This, the first phase of the restoration, will take approximately $12,000 to complete.
Strategic Importance: Car No. 560 would be the first NTHT-owned car to be restored. Our efforts in the past have focused on assisting the T with their preservation efforts on interurban cars No. 25 and 411. This car would also be the first restored Fort Worth streetcar and could be used to draw attention to our organization and our efforts. As a smaller streetcar, restoration costs are lower and moving the car for display purposes would be easier.
Directed Donations: A separate account has been established for the Birney Car No. 560 Project. Please take a moment of your time to send a directed donation for this project.
If sending personal check or money order, please make checks payable to NTHT and send them to the following address:
P.O. Box 861
Fort Worth, TX 76101
To donate with a credit card using PayPal, see our website at:
Your generous financial support makes our work possible. North Texas Historic Transportation is supported entirely by memberships and donations. No donation is too small, and all donations to NTHT, Inc. go to support our preservation efforts and educational programming. NTHT, Inc. is a nonprofit corporation with IRS designation as a 501©(3). All donations are tax-deductible.
Posted 10 April 2006 - 02:11 PM
Date: Mon Apr 10, 2006 12:55 pm
Late Friday and early Saturday, thieves cut through the fence of the storage lot where the subway parts are stored and broke into the rectifier, transformer, and other equipment. When I arrived Saturday morning someone apparently saw me coming and left in a hurry, leaving their several tools behind.
They likely only got a only couple hundred dollars for the scrap metal, but we estimate the replacement cost to us will be between $25,000 and $30,000 for the missing parts and damage they did. We simply don't have this kind of money.
They broke into Tandy car #5 and stole our ladder, the aluminum flashing we planned to use to restore the windows, and anything else made of metal they could carry. They also got into the two Airtrans cars we have stored and removed whatever metal they could yank out. We called the police and during the crime scene investigation they found more holes where they've been breaking into the back lot of the Fort Worth Transportation Authority (The T). The entire row of shuttle buses on the south end had their windows removed, taken through the fence, and shattered on a the other side.
The T had a large pallet of modular bus shelters (made of steel) that thieves had apparently been removing piece-by-piece and selling to the scrap metal dealer on the opposite side of the tracks. On the other side of the tracks we followed a debris trail and found their "staging area" where they had carried our electrical equipment, destroyed it, and made off with whatever metal they could pull out. Looking around further, they're apparently taking advantage of a crack in the scrap metal dealer's fence to remove some of his scrap as well. Again, there's a debis trail leading from the hole to their encampment along the old I-GN (FWWR) where they've made several "log cabins" out of several hundred discarded railroad ties.
In recent weeks, several homeless people have moved into the area. According to the police officers, someone is passing out flyers in Houston, El Paso, Dallas, and other cities ... encouraging homeless to come to Fort Worth where they will be welcomed with open arms. Of course, the shelters are full (and also dangerous) so many end up sleeping out on the streets, bushes, etc.
What we need to do now is secure what we still have and cut down all the brush where the thieves are hiding. I was out there with a chainsaw this weekend.
We badly need help right now and if anyone can assist in any way we will greatly appreciate it. We will be meeting this Saturday at 1:00PM and the Knights of Pythias building (3rd & Main) above Haltom's Jewelers in Fort Worth.
I have learned a lot about homeless issues in the past six months as a result of attending Near Eastside Neighborhood association meetings and I support the missions' efforts to get the community involved in dealing with OUR homeless problem. But fliers inviting people in from other towns across Texas?!? Who in the heck is doing this? I have heard anecdotes about tickets from Dallas on the TRE, but this is absolutely ridiculous. Since when is Fort Worth responsible for the homeless population in other cities?!?!?!!!
Posted 10 April 2006 - 10:59 PM
Posted 11 April 2006 - 12:57 PM
Posted 31 March 2009 - 09:10 PM
Our original streetcar, Fort Worth No. 560 has been the focus of our work since our founding and we are in a position to make great progress this year. About two years ago we were granted a $5k matching grant from the 20th Century Electric Railway Foundation. We teamed with several other museums across the US and reproduced about $30,000 of steel castings to be used in the restoration/maintenance of 10 of our type of car. This past year we qualified for another grant from 20th Century which we are once again teaming with other organizations to produce another $20,000 worth of steel castings to return our car to its former condition. The first article was cast a few weeks ago and I will probably be going to Denver in a few days to pick it up. The frame piece in question is 10 feet long and weighs over 300 lbs.
As part of our efforts to improve the leadership and organization of NTHT, we have committed to expanding our board of directors to 9 or 11 directors. We are pleased to have positive responses from a couple of excellent candidates and we are looking forward to having a varied mix of leaders who support our efforts and can help us in the community. I hope to have enough commitments by the end of the summer to hold a planning meeting featuring a facilitator/speaker from another museum group that has had exceptional success in building their board/museum over the past ten years.
It looks like we will be signing a lease on a building near downtown which will give us a home office and shop more more permanent and protected than our current facilities. We have looked for and negotiated on NUMEROUS sites over the past several years and I have always tried to keep mum about pending sites until something looked more positive. I feel comfortable in mentioning this pending lease today. I look forward to announcing a signed lease in the near future.
Posted 08 April 2009 - 03:18 PM
We will change this week’s work day to Friday instead of the usual Thursday. There will be two basic tasks.
1)Cleaning of NTT Interurban car No. 411’s carpet in anticipation of loan to the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. We will move, perhaps remove, the seats from the front compartment in order to vacuum and shampoo the carpet.
2)Preparing for the planned trip on Saturday to Red Oak for the car 125 salvage efforts. Fencing and a generator will need to be loaded into a truck or trucks for the effort.
This work will take place at the storage yard on El Paso Street behind the T (on East Lancaster - old NTT carbarn site).
On Saturday APRIL 11th, we will meet at the Whataburger at 123 S State Highway 342, Red Oak, TX at 08:00. From there, we will go to the site of DR&T Streetcar No. 125 to salvage the body. We will use the parts
from this car on our No. 123.
The forecast for Saturday calls for morning temps in the high 40s, rising to a high of 73° with isolated thunderstorms. There is the chance for poison ivy at the site and approriate clothing (jeans, gloves, solid shoes) should be worn.
If you are interested in helping out on either of these projects, contact me at 817 dash 707 and then 2956.
Posted 14 April 2009 - 06:16 AM
Posted 14 April 2009 - 08:10 AM
Posted 04 November 2009 - 04:43 PM
Co-founder, North Texas Historic Transportation, Inc.
Retired insurance businessman
Beloved husband and father.
Dec. 31, 1926 - Nov. 4, 2009
Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long delirious, burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew -
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untresspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.
Harold Charles Wareham, 82, died Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2009, at an area hospital surrounded by his children and friends.
Memorial service: 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Greenwood Chapel.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to North Texas Historic Transportation Inc., Box 861, Fort Worth, Texas 76101, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the trolley cars and trains of the 19th and 20th centuries.
Harold was born Dec. 31, 1926, in West Virginia. He served in the United States Navy in World War II before a longtime career in insurance. He built his own company, Wareham and Associates, in Fort Worth, selling the firm at retirement. He was a glider pilot and sailor, and restored antique cars, trolleys and trains. Harold also was an avid reader, pianist, Boston Red Sox lover and member of an elite group of Dallas Cowboys fans. He was also an advocate for the rights of the mentally handicapped.
Harold was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 50 years, Jenny, and his eldest son, Miles, in 2001.
Survivors: Son, John Wareham and wife, Val, of Indianapolis; daughter, Beth Wareham and husband, Bernard Holland, of New York City; and grandsons, Scott Wareham and wife, Fallon, and Regan Wareham, all of Indianapolis.
Posted 03 October 2011 - 04:38 PM
Willie Kirby , President, 817.478.0773
Posted 06 September 2012 - 12:11 PM
Dan Smith retired after 40 years with the National Weather Service. Dan is a Florida native who has devoted much of his time to historical research and writing. Particular emphasis has been on Florida’s maritime heritage and a history of steamboating on the St. Johns and Ocklawaha Rivers. He also arranged a state historic marker and 50th anniversary commemoration of The Thunderstorm Project, a historically significant U.S. Weather Bureau project conducted in 1946/47. Dan was named “Preservationist of the Year” in 2007 by the Lake County Historical Society, and in 2008 received their “Historian of the Year” award.
In Texas, Dan’s research has focused on the Bankhead Highway - the nation's first all-weather, transcontinental highway, which dates to around 1920. The Texas portion of the Bankhead – from Texarkana to El Paso – comprised roughly one-third of the 3000 mile long Bankhead route from Washington, D. C. to San Diego. When names gave way to numbered federal highways, the Bankhead from Texarkana to Dallas became part of US-67, while the Bankhead from Dallas to El Paso became part of US Highway 80.
Posted 18 September 2013 - 04:17 PM
North Texas Historic Transportation Inc., A Texas non-profit 501©3 will be participating in our first North Texas Giving Day event tomorrow. Starting at 7:00am, donations over $25 made to North Texas Historic Transportation, Inc. through DonorBridgeTX.org will be matched by a percentage of the total donations. This event will be the kickoff of our capital fundraising campaign to purchase a building to use as a carbarn in the vicinity of downtown. If you have been considering kicking in to help preserve Fort Worth streetcars, subways and interurbans, please check out www.DonorBridgeTx.org tomorrow.
Posted 02 May 2017 - 01:22 PM
....lots of interesting changes on the horizon.
Thumbs up for a Downtown Streetcar.
Posted 02 May 2017 - 02:05 PM
This organization is strictly about historic preservation and won't necessarily be involved with the any proposed system downtown or in Fort Worth. Museums preserve historic equipment, transit systems consume them. While we would love to have an interpretative operating line, it would never be for the purpose of providing transit.
- Austin55 likes this
Posted 02 May 2017 - 02:09 PM
Posted 02 May 2017 - 02:52 PM
Nope. Almost completely unrelated.
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