FEBT Restoration – Garage

The Garage is a small building across the track from the Boiler Shop. It is so called because for some time it was used to store the local Track Foreman’s car during the day. Its original function is not clearly known, though one account says it was used to store the fire fighting engine for the railroad shops. The building dates back to the 1910s or 1920s. It has double doors on both its east and west sides, the western doors leading to a long-gone bridge across Jordan Creek and up to the Markle House, once the EBT president’s residence. Like many of the EBT’s sheds, the Garage has no interior framing and only the strength of the siding holds the roof up.

For many years the building languished as a storage shed with no maintenance. The roof coverings failed and the window glass was broken out many years ago, allowing weather into the building. Large portions of the walls and sills had rotted away, the building had racked under the weight of the roof, and the doors were falling of their hinges. By 2006 it was on the verge of collapse.

An FEBT crew started working on the building in early 2007 to stabilize the structure. Initially the building was cleared of supplies and debris. Interior studs were installed to bolster the building and rotted portions of the wall plates replaced. Temporary bracing was installed to prevent further leaning of the structure and the walls were pulled back together and tied at their tops. With the building supported by jacks, the sills were excavated and removed, and new footers and sills installed. Slowly the building was jacked until each wall was back to level. After months of this preliminary work, the building was pulled upright and braced. The west doors were removed form the building, repaired, and rehung on new door posts, followed by the east doors. Rotted rafter tails and roofing boards were removed and replaced. Removal of the many layers of old roofing started in the summer of 2008.

Through the balance of 2008, the roof replacement was completed, and replica siding was applied to the south side of the building. Window repairs, repairs to the intermediate sills and floorboards, and priming and painting were all performed.

Today the building is completed and used as storage and work space by the FEBT Restoration Crew.