DECEMBER/2002: RCT&HS Website Content Help Requested

In an effort to keep this website current and interesting, your webmaster is putting out an invitation for viewers to contribute stories, research, articles, news, photos or any other meaningful content realted to the Reading Railroad or the RCT&HS. Specifically, I’m looking for help with the following:

If you would like to help out, please contact your webmaster at:, thanks!

DECEMBER/2002: Pennsylvania Christmas & Gift Show

The Reading Company Technical & Historical Society will be featuring its large modular HO-scale train layout at this year’s Pennsylvania Christmas & Gift Show at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg (Cameron & Maclay Streets, 2 blocks south of Exit 67-A on I-81). This show is one of the largest of its kind in the country and will feature over 500 vendors. Great fun for the whole family. Hope to see you there!

DECEMBER/2002: Philadelphia–Pottstown–Reading Holiday Shopping Special

Holiday Shopping Special from 30th Street Station (Philadelphia) to the Vanity Fair Factory Outlet in Reading, PA, sponsored by the Delaware Valley Association of Rail Passengers (DVARP). The Amtrak consist departs 30th St. Station at 9:00 am., Royersford Station at 10:00 am. and Pottstown Station at 10:15 am. returning in reverse order approximately at 4:20 pm., 4:35 pm. and 5:35 pm. A nearly five-hour layover will enable excursionists to shop for the holidays and have lunch. DVARP’s low fares make it easy to take the family and friends along while getting a rare opportunity to ride the ex-Reading main line.

Webmaster’s comments: DVARP is doing this in large part to help build support for rolling out commuter rail service to help ease the growing congestion on the Route 422 corridor. People want this service now. Why spend $1.8 billion dollars for a dedicated right-of-way (light rail) when the existing Norfolk Southern (ex-Reading) line can be utilized for less than half of that cost (and much sooner) by implementing commuter rail? Here’s your chance to get involved in a good cause (by merely putting your behind in a seat) and have fun all at the same time!

NOVEMBER/2002: Temple Station Work Sessions Help Needed!

Temple station, September 2002. (photos courtesy Mike Shirk)

We are planning to work at the Temple Station again on Saturday, November 2 and Saturday, November 9. Start time is 9 am. We want to do a good vacuuming, wipe up the floors, clean the office, set up the sales area, move benches, and whatever else we can find. Let me know if you can help on either day. If you have any questions contact me: Duane Engle, President, RCT&HS: (610) 929-5661,

JUNE/2002: GP35 #3640 Once Again Mobile!

#3640 at Leesport yard. (photo courtesy Mike Shirk)

GP35 #3640 rolled out under her own power on Saturday, June 1st. The locomotive made a round trip from Leesport to Temple and then a roundtrip to Glen. The locomotive performed flawlessly. All major systems were tested and found to be working correctly. The RDG #103 accompanied the #3640 on its maiden voyage, but only supplied power to test the 3640’s dynamic brakes. Next step is prep work for painting and some minor piping replacement.

A large part of the labor to restore this locomotive back to service was furnished by our group of teenage and early 20’s volunteers. A great big thank you goes out to all who helped so far with the restoration. Why not come out and lend a hand on Saturdays at Leesport or if that is not possible would you care to make a financial contribution towards the cost of painting the locomotive?

MARCH/2002: Baggage Car #1715 Progress Continuing

#1715 at Leesport yard. (photo courtesy Mike Shirk)

Restoration on Baggage Car #1715 is progressing with much body work and patching already completed. Though more work needs to be done, 1715 is looking much better then when it arrived on our property in 1998. Once finished, #1715 will join the RCT&HS active excursion fleet. The car, which began life as a “combine” was built for the Reading around 1924. It was purchased in 1998 by RCT&HS from the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer.