September 2002

Roundhouse Steam Whistle

Last week, while attending the organ rally at Bear Creek in Indiana, I had several people stop and ask why we were not inserting more stories about the old railroad days. While this was a part of my early life, I am now engaged deeply in the building of our new line of digital operated band organs, which requires no operator and is the answer to commercial installations. Our new 2000M series band organs, which provide low maintenance, and extreme dependability, are responsible for the return of organs to many fairs and permanent installations. In the daily rush to complete orders, I still have time to tell about one railroad item not mentioned in previous stories.

Back when the New York Central Railroad started cutting up the magnificent steam locomotives, I was fortunate enough to ride one of the last remaining engines from the roundhouse to the final resting place where it awaited shipment to the scrap yards. I did not know it at the time, but one of the steam whistles on the last of the locomotives was removed and donated to one of the local factories for use as a start signal for the different work shifts. I worked for this factory for a short time and happened to see the whistle in a pile of machine parts and asked what they were going to do with it. They told me they could not get it to work, but would not let me have it. Later on, a man with higher influence asked for the whistle and they gave it to him. I did not know it at the time, but he was getting the whistle for me and one day delivered it to the organ shop. The prized whistle has been on my shelf for many years, but it will soon be put back to good use. I have one spare air compressor with a large enough tank and high enough pressure to give us a fairly long blast, and have decided where the perfect place for it will be. I am updating my burglar alarm system, and have decided to use this whistle for the primary alarm signal. Now I know the whole neighborhood will know if we have a break in, and I can rest assured the Stinson Organ Company will have the most dynamic alarm system in the county.

And, so it was in the round house.

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