Anchor Hocking Glass Museum

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Staying "above ground" and "vertical" one day at a time!


2005 Harley Springer Softail


I grew up in Connecticut until I moved to Iowa to attend Iowa State University where I earned a Bachelor's Degree in Biology. I taught high school science for three years in Iowa before becoming a full-time beekeeper. After running 1200 hives of honeybees in southwestern Iowa for several years, I entered the Air Force and received a commission as a Second Lieutenant in 1980. I spent the next 28 years serving in the military as an officer and civil servant. On November 9, 2012, I decided to finally retire and start working to obtain the necessary funding to expand the museum.

I have been a "collector" since early childhood. This passion has grown and expanded through the years. I initially collected railroad tie date nails, a collection that now exceeds 25,000 nails dating from 1900 to 1980. I has also managed to amass over 4,000 bank notes from over 200 currency-issuing authorities worldwide. Eventually, I expanded my expertise by collecting marbles, lithographs and engravings, oil paintings, handmade bottles, antique Harley-Davidson motorcycles and spark plugs. My personal collection of Anchor Hocking items presently exceeds 15,000 pieces of glass, over 400 boxed sets, 75 glass mold sets, 250 wooden patterns, 500 blueprints, 25,000 pages of glass advertisements, and 500+ catalogs. The entire collection is now on display in the Anchor Hocking Glassware Museum in San Antonio, Texas. The museum will not have regular hours so the collection will be available only when the author is home.

Now that I have eight motorcars and a hydraulic crane, I built a facility to protect the cars. I recently installed a 14,000 lb. capacity car lift so that motorcar maintenace would be much easier.

With eight motorcars, I have purchased numerous new old stock Fairmont motocar parts that I needed to store, so I enlarged and enclosed the west side of the carport.

I was lucky to find original Fairmont motorcar parts which included new roofs (complete and frames only for M-9, M-19, MT-14, and A-cars), windshield side mounting brackets, 15 pairs of new aluminum lifting arms, front and back panels, new windshields in the original crates, Fairmont sound absorbing sheets, and Onan starters.

2017 Motorcar Excursions

Heart of Georgia Run - Pitts, Georgia

This was the last run on the Heart of Georgia Railroad. The railroad was sold and the new owners are not "motorcar friendly". The run began in the "metropolis" of Pitts, Georgia and ran through several swamps, over Lake Blackshear, and across three diamonds with other railroads. On the west end of the run we ended up in Plains, Georgia, where President Jimmy Carter lived. We rode through endless groves of pecan trees and through some extremely old highway overpasses. The two-day run covered approximately 260 miles.

San Luis & Rio Grande Railroad - Alamosa, Colorado (confirmed)

West Virginia Central - Elkins, West Virginia (confirmed)

2016 Motorcar Excursion History

Bluebonnet Run - Llano, Texas

The first excursion of 2016 was the Bluebonnet Run on the former Southern Pacific line running east from Llano Texas. The was the test run for the diesel powered car (former Ontario Northland) that I just finished overhauling. Since the motorcar ran well with no problems, it will be taken to the Heart of Georgia excursion in Pitts, Georgia next. During the Bluebonnet Run we encountered rain, high weeds, clogged brake rigging and a multitude of gorgeous wildflowers.


Heart of Texas Railroad - San Saba, Texas

The Heart of Texas Railroad from Brady to Lometa, Texas, was recently sold and the new owners are not "motorcar friendly". The run in April 2016 will probably be the last time the line will see motorcar traffic in the forseeable future. The line was noted for its beautiful scenery, multiple long bridges, and welded rail. The highlight of the run was the photo stop on the newly constructed 1,000 foot long, high bridge over the Colorado river. The original wooden bridge had collapsed after a horrific fire.

Camas Prairie Railroad - Lewiston, Idaho

Idaho and Washington provided some outstanding scenery on two divisions of the former Camas Prairie Railroad. The only sources of revenue on the Bountiful Grain and Craig Mountatin Railroad have been sold and will be closed soon. With all sources of revenue gone, the line will be used for car storage. This was probably the last run on the line for the forseeable future.

Bountiful Grain & Craig Mountain Railroad

Great Northwestern Railroad

Montana Tour - Montana Rail Link

Dixon and Whitehall, Montana

This tour involved motorcar runs on several divisions of the Montana Rail Link and Central Montana Railroads. The Montana Rail Link lines were active with numerous 100+ car trains. On several ocassions we had to take a siding to allow trains to pass. We crossed the 800 ft. long, 226 ft. high Marent Gulch Viaduct and tranversed a 2.2% grade after departing Dixon. From Whitehall we went climbed the grade to Sappington. On the run we were greeted by a herd of 8 wild horses which ran at full speed towards the motorcars. The horses ran up the embankment and across the tracks directly in front of my motorcar. I came to an emergency stop just as all 8 horses momentarily hesitated on the tracks directly in front of me. One large horse actually rubbed the front of my motorcar during the incident. I am extremely thankful I was able to completely stop before I hit the horses! The weather was perfect and the scenery gorgeous. On the Central Montana Railroad we were able to traverse all four large trestles on the line. Overall, it was a superb motorcar tour.

Montana Tour - Central Montana Railroad

Denton, Montana

Providence & Worcester Railroad - Worcester, Massachusetts

This was the first excursion on this railroad. The two-day excursion took us through Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. The area was the former center of the knitting industry in the United States. Each town had one or more large mills, a water supply to run the mills, and rows of mill-owned worker houses. Most of the mills were built in the late 1800s, with many converted into apartments after the industry folded. The route towards Providence Rhode Island was originally two tracks, but one track was removed when passenger service ceased. Another unique part of this excursion was the overnight parking space for the motorcars. To ensure the motorcars were protected, the railroad graciously let us put the motorcars in the engine shop overnight. On the first day we did encounter an hour delay when a large clump of trees fell across the tracks. Luckily, two people had chainsaws and after an hour of cutting, the trees were removed. Notice the large group of people directing the efforts of the few who were actually doing all the work. Looks like a state or federal work crew in "action".

West Virginia Central - Elkins, West Virginia

The last motorcar run for the 2016 season proved to be the most interesting. As you can see the fall foliage was absolutely gorgeous! The Saturday and Sunday runs were interchanged because of conflicts with two passenger trains. Early in the morning the operators were faced with extremely slippery rails covered with grease, oil, moisture, and falling leaves. In spite of all these conditions, we managed to run 200 miles! What a perfect way to end a successful motorcar season!

The Motorcar Fleet

Fairmont A-4D (3-Cylinder Lister-Petter Diesel)

The A-4D was the first motorcar that I purchased. The car had been overhauled by the previous owner so the only improvements I made was to add an intercom system and new console. Eventually the pedestal seats from my Tomah Cab car were added to this car when the suspension system was installed in the other car. This year I was able to find an original, complete Fairmont turntable made for the A-cars and a set of cast steel wheels. Once spring arrives the turntable and wheels will be installed.

Fairmont A-5E (2-Cylinder Mitsubishi Diesel)

The motorcar was in really rough shape when I brought it back from Florida. I had originally purchased the motorcar for the diesel engine only; however, when I got it home I decided it would be a real challenge to restore the motorcar to running condition.

The A-5E restoration project is well underway. The chassis has been cleaned, straightened, and repainted. All the bearings in the transmission and rear end have been replaced. The radiator fan, fan belt, clutch, and alternator are new. The old wheels were discarded and new wheels installed along with new bonded brake shoes. The radiator core was replaced and the inlet and outlet were moved to match the engines specifications. The new decking, fuel system and wiring completed the restoration.

Fairmont MT-14L Standard Gauge (Kubota Z-600 Diesel)

The Ontario Northland motorcar was in sad shape when it was purchased. The wiring was riddled with splices and bad connections. The entire inner surface had been sprayed with glue and covered with hard rubber matting. The brakes were bad, the turntable did not have an alarm, the fire extinguisher was empty although the gauge showed it was full, it had the wrong front axle improperly adjusted, and the fluids and filters hadn't seen attention for a long time.

The Ontario Northland motorcar was totally upgraded with all new wiring, completely new fuel system, new center console, new intercom system, new bonded brakes, new aluminum lift handles, four new wheels, new front axle and bearings, and a new paint scheme. I took this motorcar on my runs this year in Texas, Georgia, Washington, Idaho, and Montana where it performed flawlessly.

Fairmont MT-14L Tomah Cab (Onan Engine)

This car was modified by the Tomah Car Shops of the Milwaukee Railroad after it was purchased from Fairmont. The motorcar was overhauled and fitted with a new suspension system, four new wheels, new bonded brakes, stainless steel six gallon gas tank, new seats, new control console, new floor mats, and a 110 watt radio.

Fairmont MT-14L Narrow Gauge (Onan Engine)

This motorcar was originally sold to the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad in 1975. It was subquently converted to narrow gauge several years later. In the coming months the original gasoline powered Onan engine will be replaced with a brand new Kubota diesel; thereby eliminating the problems associated with running gasoline engines at high altitudes.

Fairmont MT-14 (Kubota Z-600 Diesel - Hydrostatic Drive)

This motorcar has a Kubota diesel but the drive is fluid (hydrostatic). Not many of these cars were produced and information about the drive system is very limited. I bought the motorcar for the diesel engine; however, my plans have changed and it will be my next restoration project.

The original cab was removed, cut up and land-filled. The deck was stripped and repainted. The control console was repainted and fitted with new switches and gauges. The motorcar contains a myriad of hydraulic lines that makes restoration a real challenge.

The center wood console was made from solid red oak and red oak 3/4" veneered plywood. The wood was assembled with stainless steel screws and then stained and coated with outdoor polyurethane. The front of the motorcar was assembled from new old stock Fairmont parts which will be disassembled. painted and then reassembled.

The fuel tank had to be mounted near the front of the motorcar because there was no room under the console at the back of the motorcar once the battery box was installed. The oil cooler was mounted in front of the radiator.

Fairmont A-Car (2-Cylinder Mitsubishi Diesel)

This motorcar was purchased as a standby only. It has a Mitsubishi 21.5 horsepower S2E2 diesel engine like the A-5E shown earlier. The cab has been fitted with a massive structural support that allowed the railroad to lift the motorcar with a crane. Fold down footrests were utilized to increase the crew comfort and capacity of the motorcar. The motorcar weighs 2800 pounds.

Fairmont A-Car (3-Cylinder Mitsubishi Diesel)

This motorcar has a Mitsubishi 33 horsepower S3E2 diesel engine. The cab has been fitted with a massive structural support that allowed the railroad to lift the motorcar with a crane. Unlike the 2-cylinder version shown earlier, this car is all steel and weighs 3200 pounds.

Fairmont W64-A-1 Hydraulic Derrick (Wisconsin Engine)

I purchased a very rare, hydraulically-powered W64-A-1 derrick with a 13 foot boom from the Smythville Texas Railroad Museum. Between exposure to the elements and local vandals, the derrick was almost beyond restoration: however, the brakes have been replaced, there is new decking, all the boom cables were replaced, the Wisconsin 9 h.p. engine has been totally overhauled and new hydraulic lines purchased. I just have to add hydraulic oil and connect the gas tank and the project will be completed.


New Car Fleet

Driving to distant motorcar runs is a breeze in my new Ford F-250 Super Duty truck. The diesel has outstanding horsepower, torque, comfort and economy. With a 15,000 lb. towing capacity, you hardly know you are towing even the heaviest motorcar.

Christmas came early this year with the purchase of a 2016 Ford Escape SE in burgundy red. This replaces my 1984 El Camino.

Retirement Activities

Bond . . . . the name is James Bond. I'm taking an incredible lady to the Celtic Woman concert at the Majestic Theatre in a classic 1956 Royal Royce Bentley. I traded in my famous Aston Martin for a more "family friendly" car without all the weaponry. Yes, I am enjoying the single life every day!!!

I decided to live each day like it was my last. With this in mind, I recently took an hour flight in the P-51 Mustang pictured here. The flight consisted of 360 degree rolls, four-point rolls, flying inverted, flying in very close formation with another aircraft and the pinnacle of the flight was two simulated bombing and straffing runs over Calavaras and Braunig Lakes. The flight gave me a great appreciation for stamina and courage of the pilots who flew these fighters in WW II!!

During inclement weather, I can always continue my fascination with railroads by operating my HO model railroad (now under construction). The railroad is designed to represent the New Haven Railroad's mainline with overhead electrification.

2017 Cruises

Western Carribean

In February 2017 I took my second cruise to Mexico, Belize, and Honduras in the western Carribean. This cruise was taken aboard the Carnival Freedem. I visited the Mayan ruins in both Mexico and Belize. In Mahagony Bay Honduras I went snorkling and exploring the coral reefs in a one-person, self-propelled submersible. The highlight of the cruise was a guided tour of the ship available to only 32 passengers. We went through the laundry, food storage and preparation areas, morgue, brig, control room for all the ship's equipment (engines, generators, ballast and fuel tanks, heat exchangers, water treatment, etc.) and tour of the ship's bridge conducted by the ship captain.

Faithful Companions

Life is great when you are "owned" by a cat. This is Lovebug my faithful and loving companion who was rescued near Rosenberg Texas after being "dumped" by the side of the road by some thoughtless person.

Lovebug is enjoying life every chance she can! She spends the majority of her day sleeping wherever she can.

Coyotes and wild hogs living in the area pose a serious threat to domestic animals, so Lovebug and Noel have an outdoor pen which they can access through a elavated tunnel from the porch. I had to install a custom made spiral ladder for Lovebug because of her advanced age (9 years old). Lovebug needed a companion so I adopted Noel from the Animal Defense League of Texas. Life has definitely changed with two cats!

Noel is a mighty hunter and often brings her trophies into the house. No matter where she is, Noel can always find a way to settle down for taking a nap.

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