Railway Preservation News • View topic - PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
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 Post subject: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 2:07 am 

Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:17 pm
Posts: 13
I have just learned that the former Essex House Restaurant property in West Orange, NJ, has been sold and will be replaced with a medical office building. Retired Erie RR Engineer, Jim Kostibos, called me about this yesterday but had no further information. There was an effort to acquire this historic car a few years ago but the restaurant owners decided to reopen the venue and car for general dining.

If anyone from the group that contacted me regarding that effort back then sees this, please email me at <dlw1155@yahoo.com>. Jim is going to try to find out more about the sale and the car as he live in West Orange. It would be a shame to see it scrapped as happened to the parlor obs car and caboose at the Citro's Restaurant site in Wayne.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 5:28 am 

Joined: Thu Feb 27, 2014 3:08 pm
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Al Holleuffer wrote:
It would be a shame to see it scrapped as happened to the parlor obs car and caboose at the Citro's Restaurant site in Wayne.

At least 565 was down in New Hope at the time, or not in Wayne, anyway. According to their website, the Essex House has been temporarily closed for a while now due to COVID. They claim they are checking their email, info@essexhousenj.com , so it may be worth an inquiry via that channel. Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 10:59 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:55 pm
Posts: 1557
Apparently ex-Pittsburgh and West Virginia:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=31524

Here's a photo, for as long as the link works:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/The+E ... 74.2773972


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 11:39 am 

Joined: Fri Apr 15, 2005 2:34 am
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Looks like a nice car. Are the lamp fixtures original?

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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 9:43 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:55 pm
Posts: 1557
softwerkslex wrote:
Looks like a nice car. Are the lamp fixtures original?

Some of the interior looks original, but a lot probably isn't. Colebrookdale Railroad is an obvious place for it, they already do up their cars like this one so it would fit in as is. It looks like everything under the frame is missing though, including the trucks.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 12:02 am 

Joined: Thu Oct 08, 2015 4:54 pm
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Location: New Franklin, OH
As far as I know, it’s still sitting on its original trucks. I don’t know how much is still there underneath - it doesn’t look totally stripped. I’ll check with the P&WV guys to see if they know how much of the inside is original.

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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 12:08 am 

Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:05 am
Posts: 246
PMC wrote:
softwerkslex wrote:
Looks like a nice car. Are the lamp fixtures original?

Some of the interior looks original, but a lot probably isn't. Colebrookdale Railroad is an obvious place for it, they already do up their cars like this one so it would fit in as is. It looks like everything under the frame is missing though, including the trucks.

If you scroll down on the google link and look at the exterior shots, particularly the night shot, you can clearly see the truck frames and some of the underbody equipment. The building's kitchen roof is attached to about a third of one side of the car, who knows how much damage there is to the one side. The car does look like it has a lot of original interior and the wood work/inlays are still there, so it would be a great save, particularly for Colebrookdale as mentioned if the side is repairable.

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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 12:41 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:55 pm
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TrainDetainer wrote:
If you scroll down on the google link and look at the exterior shots, particularly the night shot, you can clearly see the truck frames and some of the underbody equipment. The building's kitchen roof is attached to about a third of one side of the car, who knows how much damage there is to the one side. The car does look like it has a lot of original interior and the wood work/inlays are still there, so it would be a great save, particularly for Colebrookdale as mentioned if the side is repairable.

You're right, the trucks etc. are hiding behind shrubs, that is a lot fewer components to track down. A third of a side missing is a lot though, I wonder what would happen to the whole above frame structure if you lifted it that way, would it buckle? One thing, if this whole complex is being leveled for an office park it would be a lot easier to remove the car last.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 1:25 am 

Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 6:37 pm
Posts: 1506
Quote:
"One thing, if this whole complex is being leveled for an office park it would be a lot easier to remove the car last."
Except for the precision of timing, and then assuring, the move. Both of these have proven chronic worries in my brief experience with assisting this sort of thing.

That is particularly important concerning the issues of 'lifting integrity' with an unknown percentage of the car framing gone or compromised. "Finding out" as the last parts of the adjacent building are being removed that you don't have the ability to actually lift, move, or secure the thing adequately might be unwise, particularly as the developers will have precisely the kind of demolition equipment and debris cart-away to make short work of car, trucks, and all at that point, but not even, perhaps, a day or two later...

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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 2:10 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:55 pm
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Overmod wrote:
"Finding out" as the last parts of the adjacent building are being removed that you don't have the ability to actually lift, move, or secure the thing adequately might be unwise, particularly as the developers will have precisely the kind of demolition equipment and debris cart-away to make short work of car, trucks, and all at that point, but not even, perhaps, a day or two later...


You're right, best get while the getting's good, to paraphrase J.C. Fogerty. I have perused some of the older threads on this car, past owners of the restaurant, which has opened and closed several times, have apparently been trying to sell this car since 2002. The term "Hope Diamond" keeps coming up, as in that's how much they think the car is worth. Hopefully now the current owners realize the options are a donation or paying to haul it away as scrap.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 4:45 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 9:18 pm
Posts: 519
Location: Illinois
Like many of these restaurants - the story that the business will imminently close, will be torn down, etc. has been going around for 20+ years for this establishment.

For cars rescued from restaurants - which typically have large holes cut into the sides for doorways - how many times have these rescued cars been made back into working passenger cars? I can't think of many. I can think of many that have been later scrapped, or languish on sidings somewhere.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 7:08 pm 

Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:37 am
Posts: 1
The West Coast Railway Association in Squamish, British Columbia, rescued a CPR business car after years of serving as a restaurant in a touristy area of Vancouver. It was afflicted with the same aforementioned holes cut into the walls. The museum has done an exquisite restoration of Car 8 Alberta and today it's featured on the attractions page of their website:

https://www.wcra.org/exhibits.php

Kevin


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 7:18 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:47 pm
Posts: 850
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Scranton Car 324 at Electric City became part of a restaurant in 1940 and the carbody has been restored as a trolley. It still needs work (suspended account COVID-19) but it WILL run.

Phil Mulligan


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 8:09 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:17 pm
Posts: 13
When Rod Keller established the venue, he did not cut any additional doorways in the side of the car where it abuts the building, but he did gut the car's kitchen to make a room for guests to be greeted and await seating. There was a water leak that damaged the woodwork inside where it adjoins the building but the owners had it repaired. The coupler and draftgear on the vestibule end were removed in order to have the diaphram make contact with the wall and it was on the ground underneath it for years but was not there when my wife and I dined there four years ago. The car is on its original trucks and most, if not all, of the original equipment is still on the underbody.


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 Post subject: Re: PRIVATE CAR AT ESSEX HOUSE RESTAURANT WEST ORNGE, NJ
PostPosted: Sun Jul 18, 2021 11:42 pm 

Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2007 12:19 am
Posts: 181
Are there any updates as to the status of this car? This sounded like a fast-moving situation when it was t reported in Feb, 2021.


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