In November 2021 our friend and handcar collector Rich Harner of Liberty, Missouri unexpectedly passed away suddenly. Rich had traveled the midwest in search of handcars and documents. Rich left instructions some years earlier that his collection of research documents and machines would be left to Mason with the expectation they would be preserved.

Sadly before we could pickup the collection, a portion of the holdings were destroyed by fire. We acquired a pump car, two velocipedes, rail bicycle, dozens of wheels, and boxes of documents at various Missouri locations and transported them home to Santa Clarita. It will take some time before we can restore items from the collection to display at our station in Marina.

Sheffield Handcar from the Delaware and Hudson Railroad. We are planning to rebuild the machine.

Dozens of wheels that remain from the garage fire. Some warped, but most are in usable condition. Lost in the fire were two velocipedes and a handcar used to transport men into underground mines.
Rich’s prized Teeter rail bicycle. We have this, along with several parts and wheels that could enable us to build more of these vehicles. We also have the company records and blueprints dating back to the 1800s. We plan to refurbish this machine and display it in our future open air museum in Marina.
This is one of the more interesting items we came into possession of. These are brand new pressed steel rail wheels designed to be placed onto a Ford Model T to allow the vehicle to travel across standard gauge train tracks. Perhaps a future project to acquire a Model T and build a turntable to turn the vehicle around.