Friday, March 10, 2017

Did you miss me???

Hi Folks!
After getting a few (misguided) tweaks that I don't seem to know how to write a blog, I decided to take 2016 off.
To those of you who really did miss me, I am sorry and grateful.
To those of you who complained--well, we will disagree.

It's my blog.
Here we are already in March and It snowed today. I bet the OBRM yard display is looking mighty pretty.
Since October of last year, here is what has been happening
Teddy Roosevelt is smiling down upon us.
We began, in ernest, the restorarion of HIS Presidential Railroad Station.

A brief historical note for you all-
When the Oyster bay Branch Extension Railroad was completed in 1889. the turntable and freight house was brought up from Locust Valley and both were installed as well as having a brand new brick station erected for travelers.
This original brick building is the foundation and backbone of the current building.
When TR became the youngest President of the USA, the LIRR began a rebuild of the original "cape style" building to make it a more befitting and grander structure for the new President.
Since he made his home at Sagamore Hill and ran the country from Oyster Bay, it was  determined that  the architecture be updated and changed.
Bradford Lee Gilbert, a noted architect and designer of different types of public structures was brought on board and his design was built within a year of groundbreaking.
What we have today is a humble attempt at what will be in the near future.
We are pouring all of our heart and soul into the station building as it will be our headquarters.

We hired John Collins and Tim Lee as our head people on this project as they both have the heart and desire to see this restoraion through to tthe end in a most befitting and historical nature.
They began by having new footers dug and poured inside to be ale to install 8 new posts/pilasters to hold up the two main trusses of the building. These in turn are holding up the south side roof dormer.
The LIRR/MTA removed these in1965 when they cut up the building for station and crew facilities.
Big doings-trust me.

Then while that was going on, TML Construction brought in an ass kicking mason crew who were able to open up the west wall and south walls to begin the process of installing all new  correctly designed doorways and 2 new windows. They also had to move 1 window back to its original spot!
This crew will come back when we get to the  underpinning and north wall restoration where 2 new doorways and 2 new windows will need to be installed.
All new roof rafter tail extensions were designed, created, cut and installed on the south roof line and new custom beadboard roofing was installed underneath to match the original.

Now we are engaged in an entire re-roofing with thick cut cedar shingles. Our roofing contarctor has already completed the new installation on the North roof side and East end bathroom section including a new flat roof with new copper vents/flashing. The south roof has been 75% completed and should be 100% complete by end of month April.
We have also received ALL of our new custom crystal transoms to install over the original double hung windows where they were removed. It is a very thrilling site to actually walk up to the West wall of the building and see how it originally looked with the new windows and door with sidelights. Even the glass was custom designed to be original 1902 style wavy glass. True artisans of wood and glass.we are waiting to install the new leaded glass window inserts in the South roof dormer until the completeion of the roof installation.
And just so you know-The masons even rebuilt our fireplace chimney and made it OPERABLE to boot! While the bricks were removed on the outside of he chimney, I snuck up the ladder to take a look and to my surprise, I was able to clearly see the remnants of the original round window brickwork. YES, I did take photos for "posterity". All of our photos are posted on our Facebook page and some are currently on our website as well.

We still have a ways to go before we can light a nice toasty wood fire, however it is done right and after the firebox is installed, we will try and mimic the mantel and surround from the LIRR Southampton station. After all, BradfordLee Gilbert designd this station too and it shares many traits with Oyster Bay.

This is where I will leave you, however, as always, please leave your comments-good and otherwise.