Monday, June 1, 2009

Frisco Caboose is source of great pride in downtown Rolla

In keeping with tradition the Frisco Caboose will once again be open for free tours to the public during the 15th Annual Route 66 Summerfest Celebration on the evening of Friday, June 5 and Saturday, June 6. If you didn’t have a chance to tour the Frisco Caboose during Public Works Celebration Day on May 16, you may want to take a few minutes to peak inside and take a look at the Route 66 memorabilia that is showcased inside. The new 2009 Tour of Missouri banner is also displayed on the front of the Frisco Caboose and makes a great backdrop for photo opportunities with friends and family.

The relocation, restoration and enhancements to the Frisco Caboose were truly a community-wide effort comprised of Rolla residents, city employees and members of the community. This collaborative effort makes the Frisco one of the more enduring landmarks and focal points in the downtown area. To show the City’s appreciation to those individuals who played an integral role in the restoration of the Frisco Caboose, and those who donated their time and talent in helping preserve the Frisco history, John Butz, City Administrator and myself presented them with a piece of Frisco history. Each of the individuals was presented with a commemorative framed copy of the $1,000 St. Louis – San Francisco Railway Company bonds that were sold to help fund the construction of the Frisco Railroad. The bonds are dated Feb. 24, 1958.

The commemorative bonds were presented to the following individuals for their tireless efforts, which included countless weekends and volunteer hours after work: Steve Hargis, Public Works Director (Frisco history and restoration); Marlin Malone, Equipment Operator II, Environmental Services Department (Frisco history, restoration and wiring on the Frisco Caboose); Jeff Feeler (all electrical work on Frisco Caboose); Richard Allison (repainted the 1501 Frisco Engine and passenger car in Schuman Park); Keith Conway (painted the 1501 Frisco logo on the park building in Schuman Park); and Don Macormic (helped research Frisco memorabilia items).

I truly appreciate all the work and effort that went into the restoration and preservation of the Frisco Caboose and related Frisco heritage at Schuman Park by these individuals, and countless other community volunteers who helped clean, paint and restore the Frisco Caboose.

Well known for its history as a railroad town when the first train rolled into town on Dec. 22, 1860, Rolla’s association with trains has been well preserved through the acquisition of the Frisco Caboose and the restored 1501 Frisco steam engine that is on display at 15-acre Schuman Park in Rolla.

In closing I’d like to remind everyone that the new 2009 full-color aerial photo of the Rolla area is available for purchase at the GIS/Mapping Office located in the Public Works Department at Rolla City Hall (901 N. Elm Street). The aerial was flown on Feb. 10, 2009 and is available on 42- x 52-inch photo quality gloss paper. For more information, or to place your order for an aerial photo of Rolla, please call (573) 364-8659, or stop by City Hall anytime between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I remember when I was young, seeing the trains coming and going along the Frisco line, with the wee caboose trailing the end of the train. Why then would anyone put one in a parking lot when the 1501 is lacking a caboose that would round out its image?