A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE FINGER LAKES LIVE STEAMERS, INC.
compiled by Timothy B Guenther
(Research based upon meeting minutes, member recollections, and the Pop Valve)
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Club is Incorporated
The club is incorporated under the laws of New York State.
Planning Stated for 7¼ Gauge
Planning for the 7¼ inch gauge railroad has started.
Second Annual Picnic
The second annual picnic takes place. Dave Conroy’s Atlantic is the first engine to run at the club along 170′ of point to point track that has been laid.
First Rail Laid
The first piece of rail is laid on the elevated track.
The club purchases a 4,000 gallon cypress water tank for $25.
Pageant of Steam
FLLS exhibits at the Pageant of Steam in Canandaigua, NY.
First Railroad Is Started
The first posts are installed for an elevated track. This will become a dual gauge (3½ & 4¾) railroad primarily for ¾” & 1″ scale models to operate.
The first picnic is held at Marengo.
The club starts a newsletter to keep members informed and is called the Fin-Lay Pop Valve. Richard Alley is the first Editor. Work also begins at Marengo.
Land Obtained For The Club
The club leases approximately 12 acres of land, just west of Marengo, NY, with an option to buy. The constitution is accepted by majority vote.
Membership on the rise
Membership is up to 70 members.
Name Changed to Finger Lakes Live Steamers
The name of the organization is changed to Finger Lakes Live Steamers to better identify the name of the club with the geographical region that it would serve. A committee starts work on a constitution and by-laws for the club.
Live Steam Magazine
A photo and announcement of the newly formed club “Genesee Valley Live Steamers” appears in Live Steam Magazine.
Inaugural meeting of the Genesee Valley Live Steamers
Charter members were:
|James V. Wright||Robert C. Hannum|
|Walter B. Packard||John S. Eyster|
|Henry N.B. Hospers||John C. MacDonald|
|G.B. Gary Hilton||Ed Nolan|
|Norman E. Kistner||Erwin Kistner|
|Sanford S. Whittum||Robert V. Graham|
|Lloyd B. Andrus||Lawrence A. Smith|
|Richard C. Alley||Edward Van Leer|
Jim Wright was elected President and John Eyster became Secretary/Treasurer. The primary goals were to search for potential new members and find a suitable location for a track.
Live Steam Magazine Ad
Jim Wright was born in England and educated there as a chemical engineer. Coming to this country, he took a job with a chemical company in Philadelphia and joined the Pennsylvania Live Steamers. Changing positions again, he came to Rochester where he discovered there was no live steam club. He wrote to Live Steam Magazine requesting all Live Steamers in the greater Rochester area meet at his house. Bill Fitt, then Editor, published his request and he had a good turnout, coming not only from Rochester, but Syracuse, Pulaski, and Fulton.