Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Caboose on the Loose

From Mick Melvin:

Caboose in Mansfield

This past April, I was on a drive to capture some “backside” pictures when I passed a caboose along Route 44 in Mansfield, CT. I didn't know the area, but turned around on Brigham Tavern Rd. (That was for you, Dave.) I pulled into a lot with a deserted building to the left and the wooden, weather-beaten caboose to the right nestled next to some railroad tracks. Being low on time, I only snapped a few shots, but vowed to go back after I found some information on this old car.

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I did go back in May to take more pictures, but was having trouble finding information about the old caboose. I found one article about a caboose that sat outside of the Mansfield Depot Restaurant, but not being from Connecticut, I didn't even know if this was the location of the restaurant. Also, there was no real description of the red wooden car with blue-framed windows, so I wasn't sure this was “my” caboose.

Well, I was surprised and delighted recently to see an article in the Hartford Courant about an old caboose being transported from Mansfield, CT, to the Connecticut Trolley Museum in East Windsor. As it turns out, it is “my” red, weather-beaten caboose. The article describes the wooden caboose with the table set with silverware and wine glasses like I remembered. The caboose was spared in a 2003 fire that destroyed the Mansfield Depot Restaurant. The caboose has sat basically untouched since the fire. I'm glad to hear it will be restored and utilized for special events. I'm also glad that this is one time that the backside has a happy ending.

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1 comment:

  1. I moved to CT in 2001 and dined at the restaurant at this location several times. It was a good restaurant -- one of the better ones in the area -- and we were very saddened when it burned. The caboose had been part of the restaurant serving as either the bar or a table overflow. There had been photos and memorabilia on the walls of the caboose covering the local history of the depot which were likely lost in the fire. Thanks for the update on the fate of this caboose.

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