To: "Donald E. Harper, Jr" , Railspot
Subject: Re: RS: Wobble, Bobble, Turnover, and Stop
Date: Fri, 10 May, 2002, 16:16
I have a page on the line on my site.
You ask on the web page "what happened to the caboose?" This is what happened (from the Visitors Guide I have in progress):
" MKT #15143 was built in 1896. It is a 36-foot, 30-ton capacity flat car.
It has a steel frame with 8 stake pockets on each side. The deck is wood.
There are truss rods beneath the frame and the triple valve is the K type.
Originally #15143 was probably a stock car or box car, based on the underframe design. It was acquired by the Waco, Beaumont, Trinity & Sabine Railway which converted it to a caboose. It had a little house on
one end and two long tool boxes on the other. When found in Trinity, Texas, it had
rotted completely in two and the truss rods and queen posts were sitting on the ground. It was completely rebuilt in Galveston. All metal
parts, except the wheels, are original. The original car number is unknown, and
15143 was selected by the Joe Bailey. " ================================
FWIW, my Uncle Ray Wood told us the story of Wobblety, Bobblety, Turnover and Stop when we were in grade school, some 55 or so years ago.
WBT&S #1 is mounted on a simulated turntable outside the Galveston Railroad Museum Offices. There is an endless tape recording that greets visitors as they walk out the office doors that refers to the WBT&S as the Wobbelty, Bobblety, Turnover and Stop. In the files at the Museum is a newspaper clipping from the Trinity Times, or whatever it is called, written when #1 was being moved to Galveston. I THINK I remember the clipping saying Wobbelty, Bobbelty, Turnover and Stop. I will try to get by there tomorrow and check.
Texas A&M Marine Lab
5007 Avenue U
Galveston, TX 77551
George W Jenista
RS: Wobble Bobble Turnover and Stop
My tattered old Treasury of Railroad Folklore (Botkin & Harlow, @1953, Bonanza Books, N.Y.C.) lists the nickname as "Wobblety, Bobbltey, Turnover & Stop." ================================
I was wrong. There are two newspaper articles in the files, one from Trinity and one from Huntsville. The Trinity paper refers to the Wobble Bobble. The Huntsville paper refers to Wobbly Bobbly. No mention of "Turnover and Stop" in either paper. There is also a Xerox copy of a 1954 Shortline Journal which refers to the railroad as the Wobble Bobble.
Texas A&M Marine Lab
5007 Avenue U
Galveston, TX 77551
MORE WOBBLE, BOBBLE, TURNOVER AND STOP 2003
Fri, Feb 21, 2003, 10:24pm (CDT-1) Subject: Re: RS: Wobbly Bobbly Tram Road
Jim King wrote:
I verified the existence of "Wobbly Bobbly Tram Road" by driving the length of it last Friday.
Dog my cat, Jim, I was hoping to eventually surprise you with a photo of that street's sign (that's why I recently asked if you were coming to the Plano Train Show), but I'm glad you got to see it in person.
The "Wobbly Bobbly Tram Road" street signs appeared to be practically brand new. Dad speculated that the county may have recently upgraded the street signs in that area due to emergency response/ 911 requirements.
When I was there Thanksgiving, there was only ONE sign labeled with that name, near the street's west end. It read "WOBBLY BOBBLY TRAM." Is the word "ROAD" on the new signs? (I take it there are now more than one, right?)
About midway down it, there was a one-lane bridge which appeared to have original pilings.
A local landowner said that a few miles of track were still in place just off the east end of the road. Said he had walked it to the edge of
Livingston and track went all the way.
Personally, I didn't find a road that crossed any rails, but IIRC there was only one road to try and it was in the edge of Livingston. I never could find where it crossed a
grade, abandoned or otherwise.
To reach "Wobbly Bobbly Tram Road", go west on US190 from Livingston and turn left on FM2457... Go almost exactly one mile and turn left on a county road the name of which I do not recall.
That would be Chris Brent Rd, or some similar name. It was spelled differently on various street signs. Chris Bent maybe? Can't find my notes right now.
As a side note, Farm Road 2457 is old US-190. If you drive to its west end (just west of the nearby community of Blanchard), you can tell that it once continued across land now inundated by Lake Livingston. It rejoined the current 190 on the west shore at Pointblank. If you've got a spare minute, I'll outline a personal tragedy that occurred at this locale; altho rr's weren't involved, keep the word "tram" in mind:
Just before midnight on March 7, 1964, our carload of six--my family of three plus two relatives and a friend--were returning home to Pineland from a girls high school basketball play-off game in Brenham (we lost).
This was long before Lake Livingston was impounded. 1100 feet west of the old Trinity River bridge between Pointblank and Blanchard, our journey came to a screeching halt, thanks to a drunk driver. I'll spare you the gory details except to say that my dad died and both my legs were broken. Despite missing school for the remainder of the term (I spent well over a month in a hospital 90 miles away), I finished 6th grade on the honor roll, thanks in large part to away above and beyond the-call-of-duty teacher named Arthur "Doc" Ellison. (Call him Doc at school and you paid for it with your butt!!)
Doc's father Frank, who I think was already deceased at the time, had been a log *tram* engineer for Kirby Lbr. Co. out of nearby Bronson in bygone years. Life gets quirky sometimes.
One of Doc's family photos prominently showing his dad reclining on a Kirby Ten-wheeler was published within the last few years in a pictorial history of Sabine County.
PS: When I got out of the hospital in April of '64, I was decked out in a body cast that went from my tits to my toes, and nearly everywhere inbetween. THANK GOD FOR THAT ONE EXCEPTION! With no station wagon in the family--and since 90 miles was a tad far to ride in the back of a pickup!--my uncle "Mutt" Barlow, who was then (and for many years) a Sabine Co. deputy, borrowed an ambulance from Hemphill undertaker John Starr, Sr., to bring me home in. (At my behest, we went to the schoolhouse first!) Now you might recognize place-names like Hemphill, Bronson, and Sabine Co. from media coverage of this month's space shuttle disaster, as much debris and remains were recovered there. One TV video clip gave a glimpse of Hemphill undertaker "Squeaky" Starr,
a.k.a. John Starr, Jr. Like I said, life gets quirky sometimes.
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