September 14, 2013
WRSDC celebrated the international "Drive Your Studebaker Day" by meeting in
East Troy. Club member John Lauber has his old fashioned ice cream parlor there
and we enjoyed seeing the treasures in his shop and treating ourselves to his
delicious concoctions. Many of us made fast work of delicious hot fudge sundaes.
Next door is the East Troy Electric Railroad Museum. With a heritage going back
106 years, the line once extended 36 miles to Milwaukee. Now the extent is from
East Troy to a farmer's market in Mukwonago, ten miles distant. Old timers once
got off the train midway and were transported by horse carriage to a posh resort
at Lake Beulah. The "train" is made up of rail cars that are old street cars,
powered by a long pole following overhead 600 volt electric lines. The East Troy
Electric Railroad is owned and maintained by a volunteer organization.
Trains have the right of way at intersections and when approaching one, blow
this signal: two longs, a short, and a long. That is Morse code for the letter Q.
This dates back in English history when all traffic had to stop when the royal
carriage (carrying the Queen) approached. Trumpeters blew the signal, giving
her entourage the right of way. Try doing that with your Studebaker horn!
Rick Rechek counted 20 Studebakers, a great showing, and we drove from John's
parlor to Gus's Drive In. Assembled there were many collector cars on a balmy
Saturday afternoon. Our club made an impressive display by lining up our cars
across the street.
WRSDC secretary Ed Carmo