Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Friends of the Port Hope Railroad Depot have been both astonished and delighted by the number of people who have appeared each Tuesday at the building site.  We recognize and value our volunteers as they contribute to preserving the 1904 Pere Marquette Depot. Most are individuals who are jacks-of-all-trades who can master any of the tasks that need to be accomplished for the day.

There are the groups and teams who have come from out of town to help. One team consisted of students from Olivet College. A few weeks later the Harbor Beach Chemical Bank employees assisted in various projects. Another valued volunteer team is the Depot Ladies Club. These friends arrive every Tuesday noon with a delightful and hearty lunch for the day’s volunteers.

The Chemical Bank volunteers
 This generous spirit of volunteerism reflects one of the great characteristics of our community.  We thank you all.

Lunch with Olivet College students

Monday, October 7, 2013

 Here's an excerpt from the Huron Daily Tribune published 10/1/13

Stories from our history

A group of volunteers also were hard at work rebuilding the 1904 train depot at Port Hope. The depot is scheduled to become a museum when finished.

The depot had been moved this year from its original location in town. It now sits on property that was formally the town’s sugar beet dump.

David Hunter and his older brother, Jim, were raised in the town in the 1940s and 50s. David Hunter
was at the museum site on Saturday. He gave some insights to the depot and the town in its heyday.

He said the beet business was far different than today. Farmers would bring their beets to town in pickup trucks. The truck, the beets, and all the dirt on the beets, would be weighed. The front end of the trucks were then lifted by a sling-like devise, allowing the beets to fall out the rear into a pit.

The beets would travel along a conveyer while the earth from the beets would be shaken off. That dirt
would then be put back into the farmer’s pick-up and weighed by beet personnel. This would give an
accurate weight of the load of beets.

Hunter said there was no such thing as preschool and kindergarten when he was a child. He said his first job was at the train depot when he was 4 or 5 years old. The youngster would go the depot early each morning. He would get a special bucket, carry it to the local coal yard, and fill it with coal for the depot’s pot belly stove.

After the coal was in the stove and a fire was roaring, the station supervisor, Lena Welch, would pay
him 5 cents. David said that nickel was spent wisely. He would often go to the candy store/bakery in
town and spend the entire coin on sweets and other goodies.

Read the complete article here...

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Starting to Move

Ok it is April 23, the frost is mostly gone from the ground.  Talaski Movers arrived to jack-up the beams under the old building.  The winter was hard on her, but you can almost feel the life being pumped back into her.

Todd Talaski, the mover, arrives

Todd, unloading the cribbing

Digging down 3' for the jacking platforms

Todd running the backhoe

Hydraulic Jack in place

Two wet rats, just up from digging under the depot- whew!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Well It's December and I had almost given up on moving the depot this year.  Today they slid 2 long I-beams under the old building and started jacking the lower end.  Even though we had pumped the water it was muddy for the moving guys. Todd said that they should finish jacking this week and move the building after Christmas.  Rich Harp (newspaper) stopped by to chat and wants us to take lotsa photos - we have been.
Then about 2pm James Pawlowski came by with his mini-excavator and dug the trench for the conduits, the electrical service and communications lines.  Ben Smith came by after work to do the conduit work and fill in the trench.  We finished around 6:30 tonight.  We had nice helpers and many cars drove by to peak.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

New foundation, Sept 8, 2012

Saturday , September 8th was a landmark day, the sun rose behind storm clouds and the sky opened up for a perfect working day. The team work was fantastic, four pros at mud slinging and one in command of the cement mixer, the rest of the team kept the wheels going.  A feast for lunch and then back to the game play.