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Caboose Renovation Completed

July 6, 2012

Chuck Lursen stands in front of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy caboose 
 Fulda Free Press Norma Dittman
Fulda Free Press Norma Dittman
Chuck Lursen stands in front of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy caboose
- Tours encouraged
A Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Caboose that rolled into Fulda on a flatbed trailer in October of 2012 has been undergoing some renovations as requested by the Fulda Heritage Society. Those renovations are now complete and the caboose is ready for personal and group tours. Anyone wanting a tour can stop by the Fulda Depot or call Jim at 507-425-2201.

Tour groups will see actual items used in the interior of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Caboose which include an old coal burner cooking stove, training manuals, hand lanterns, washing sinks with a razor strap, candles, a comb box, soap dishes, a coal bucket, oil lamps, and an ice chest. Contents of the interior of the caboose also include framed photos, and several pieces of luggage and travel cases still marked with Railway Express tags.

Other items can also be seen such as clearance lanterns, brakemans’ flags and signal flares.

The Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Caboose was built in 1914 in Illinois. It was retired from use 60 years later. It was purchased by the Fulda Heritage Society through an auction held in Dassel, Minnesota.

Renovation of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Caboose began when Fulda Heritage Society member, Chuck Lursen, began replacing the siding on the caboose. He asked Bill Fuerstenberg to make new windows. “Bill made exact replicas of the windows that were in the caboose. He did an excellent job!” Lursen explained.

With the siding and windows replaced, it was time for Lursen to “prime” the siding. Many area residents wondered why the primer was pinke and Lursen explained that it was because he did not want white primer showing through the red top coat. “The work was being done in October,” Lursen said, grinning. “I guess I could have said it was in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.”

Work on the inside of the caboose was then began. Lursen changed the interior paint colors painting the wooden benches gray, the walls light blue, and the ceiling white. He also cleaned up the coal burning stove and the sink as well as cleaning all of the items that were on the interior of the caboose. Railroad memorabilia that graced the interior walls had to be taken down, cleaned, touched up and replaced when the interior work was complete.

In the cupola, Lursen reainted the two captain’s chairs.

Outside, the refurbishing of the stairs on both ends of the caboose was completed. Yellow paint indicates the many safety features that were incorporated into the construction of the Chicago, Burling and Quincy # 11184 Cabosse. Then Lursen nailed together boardwallks, painting the ends of them with yellow and black stripes - as another safety feature.

“Anyone who wants can go online and type in cabosse number 11184 and the information about the train ca rwill coes up,”Lursen stated. “Fulda’s caboose has a very intersting history.”

Much of the materials used in the renovation of the caboose were donated by area residents and businesses. Money has also been donated toward the renovation of the caboose.

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