Historic railcar moved to museum
A piece of Sayre's rich railroad history received a new home Saturday.
The Lehigh Valley Railroad caboose car that formerly sat in the borough's parking lot on North Lehigh Avenue was relocated Saturday to a section of track adjacent to the Sayre Historical Society Museum, where it will become part of the museum's exhibits.
The museum, located in the railroad's former passenger station, is the perfect place for the car, said Nancy Brittain, a member of the Sayre Historical Society's board of directors. "It's like the caboose has come home," she said.
The railroad car was made in the Sayre shops in the early 1940s, said historical society president Ken Bracken, and was likely in use for about 20 years before it was retired.
GE Railcar furnished a six-man crew and a lift to help move the car Saturday morning, a process that began at 7 a.m. and was still ongoing four hours later.
The caboose was loaded onto a flatbed truck provided by Tom Cotter, which then transported it down the street to the museum. Crew members then lifted the caboose off the truck to its new location and re-attached the wheels, which Brittain said were removed and brought to the museum separately.
"They're doing a phenomenal job," Brittain said Saturday of the crew, adding that the society was "grateful" to both GE Railcar and Cotter for donating their time, labor and equipment.
In the fall, workers will return to assist with restoration of the caboose. GE Railcar employees will paint and re-stencil the outside of the car, while a paint contractor will refresh the interior, Bracken said. Cotter has agreed to contribute to the interior restoration, he said.
The car will also be outfitted with a caboose stove, Bracken said. The museum has two in its collection already, but an oil fuel stove, which the car was originally designed to use, may be obtained in the near future, he said.
Once the restoration is complete, the car will be open to the public during museum hours, Bracken said.
Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email: email@example.com.