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(rshsdepot) Fw: An earlier storm hit B&O Museum

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From: <henryr.javanet_@_rcn.com>
To: <luckyshow_@_mindspring.com>
Sent: Tuesday, March 11, 2003 5:31 PM
Subject: An earlier storm hit B&amp;O Museum

> From: H.W. Rosenberg
> You aware of this?
> --------------------
> An earlier storm hit B&O Museum
> --------------------
> Frederick N. Rasmussen
> March 1, 2003
> When a portion of the snow-laden roof of the B&O Railroad Museum gave way
during the Presidents Day snowstorm, covering historic locomotives and cars
with tons of rubble and iron trusses, it wasn't the first time that the
renowned collection of railroad equipment had been assaulted by the
> The collection was assembled by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad for the 1893
Columbian Exposition in Chicago. It was shown again at the 1904 St. Louis
World's Fair and later became the core exhibits for the famous Fair of the
Iron Horse, which celebrated the B&O's centennial in 1927.
> Between Sept. 27 and Oct. 15, 1927, more than 1.3 million visitors passed
through the gates of the fairgrounds at Halethorpe to witness the B&O's
moving pageant of humanity, locomotives, cars and decorated floats.
> The fairgrounds had been specially built to stage the pageant, and its
Hall of Transportation Building became the collection's storage site once
the fair ended.
> But in the early evening of Aug. 13, 1935, dark clouds began gathering
over Baltimore.
> At 6 p.m., the wind rose to 60 mph as a horrific gale accompanied by
lightning, rain and hail roared through. The temperature, which had been
hovering near 92, immediately dropped 20 degrees.
> The storm killed 18-year-old Katherine Leila Lipscomb when lighting hit
the kitchen of her home in Alberton, Baltimore County. Three others in
nearby Granite were struck by lightning but survived.
> Thousands of dollars worth of crops were ruined in Baltimore, Howard and
Anne Arundel counties, while a shed filled with hay on New Cut Road near
Ellicott City was struck by lightning and burned to the ground.
> In Baltimore, the steeple of St. Brigid's Roman Catholic Church, at Hudson
Street and Ellwood Avenue, was whacked by lightning that blew particles of
slate onto the street below.
> Youngsters raced through Riverside Park collecting the carcasses of 300
starlings and sparrows that drowned in the torrential rains, while boys ran
out into the streets to gather up watermelons and tomatoes that had been
liberated by the wind from a stall in the Cross Street Market.
> The storm seemed to reserve special ferocity for the B&O's Hall of
Transportation Building, causing the 500-foot-long, 100-foot-high structure
to collapse with a great roar.
> "Last night it lay in almost complete wreckage, with smoke stacks of some
of the oldest locomotives in the country sticking through the roof and an
unestimated amount of damage caused to the museum pieces inside," The Sun
> "B&O officials were unable to approximate the damage, but said that
besides the destruction of the building, its collapse undoubtedly had
destroyed models, pictures and other exhibits which made up what was once
regarded as the most complete and authentic exhibition of railroading in the
country," the newspaper said.
> "The Pangborn collection of wooden models of early locomotives, which
stood along the west wall of the destroyed building, was crushed by the
falling roof and was said by authorities to be a total loss," The Evening
Sun reported.
> Falling timbers and girders destroyed a model railroad while the "roof,
which in some places was torn from the hall by the wind which swept down
upon it from the Northwest, caved in upon rows of old historic locomotives
which were lined up in the center of the long building," the newspaper said.
> Railroad officials credited the heavy, steel locomotives, lined up in the
center of the $100,000 building, with propping up the collapsed roof and
saving older and more fragile engines from damage.
> The Tom Thumb, Atlantic, York and Thomas Jefferson steam engines and
several double-decked Imlay coaches escaped serious damage, and workers
salvaged a quarter of the Pangborn Collection of prints, depicting the
growth of railroading in the United States. The prints were estimated at the
time to be worth between $200 and $500 each.
> Workers using block-and-fall gear raised and removed metal trusses and
girders from the roofs of locomotives and passenger cars while trucks carted
away loads of brick and broken glass.
> Once freed from the destroyed building, the collection was moved to
Bailey's Roundhouse at the foot of South Howard Street, below Camden
Station, where it was later opened to visitors.
> After Bailey's was torn down in 1953, the collection moved to the present
site, the 22-sided roundhouse at Pratt and Poppleton streets. It was opened
to the public that year by Gov. Theodore R. McKeldin.
> Copyright (c) 2003, The Baltimore Sun
> --------------------
> This article originally appeared at:
> Visit the Advocate online at http://www.stamfordadvocate.com

The Railroad Station Historical Society maintains a database of existing
railroad structures at: http://www.rrshs.org


End of RSHSDepot Digest V1 #617

The Railroad Station Historical Society maintains a database of existing
railroad structures at: http://www.rrshs.org