Hoosier Heartland Trolley Co. to launch campaign for interurban car restorations

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Members of the Hoosier Heartland Trolley Company Board of Directors pose with Indiana Union Traction No. 429 "Noblesville" in October 2018 just hours after it had been relocated from Noblesville, Ind. to a private, secure site.
Hoosier Heartland Trolley Co.
INDIANAPOLIS — After making headlines for saving several historic trolley cars from the Indiana Transportation Museum site in 2018, the Hoosier Heartland Trolley Company is set to launch their first major fundraising campaign for the restoration of one of the cars, after getting the collection under shelter on private property after rescuing the cars from ITM.

Hoosier Heartland Vice President Cameron Nichols tells Trains that, within 30 days, they will launch the “Electrify 429” Campaign for the full restoration of former Union Traction Co. of Indiana car No. 429. The interurban car was built in 1925 by the St. Louis Car Co., and was originally named “Noblesville,” traveling many miles across the Hoosier State serving large cities such as Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, as well as small communities.

After the Union Traction Co. was absorbed by the Indiana Railroad Interurban in 1930, the car would travel as far as Terre Haute, Ind.; Louisville, Ky.; and Dayton, Ohio. The 429 and sister car 437 “Marion” are both in the Hoosier Heartland collection, and are the only cars remaining in existence from the Union Traction Co. Plans call for the car to be restored to its original red body and green roof paint scheme from the Union Traction, and eventually, to full operation once a suitable site is located.

The fundraising campaign will be web-based with donor incentives, and is part of a long term plan for the Hoosier Heartland collection, as well as part of a larger overall view of the history of the cars and the territory they served.

“Electrify 429 will tell the story of the car and the people's lives it affected as part of a bigger picture regarding the industry and early 20th Century Indiana,” Nichols says.

He also says the organization, which is comprised primarily of young professionals younger than 30, also has bigger plans in mind going forward.

“We aim to ultimately revive a small segment of the electric railway industry by using the artifacts to create an interactive living history experience. This experience will intertwine the artifacts as a bridge between past and present by also serving real transportation and entertainment purposes," he says.

More information is available online. 

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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