Historical Marker Gets a Facelift
On May 22, 2020, Donna Hatch and Lynne Langdale, with the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) – George Washington Chapter visited the museum and restored the Historical Marker located outside the West Ticket Office.
The Historical Marker commemorates the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway Company that was headquartered in the present-day Shearn Moody Plaza. The marker was installed in 1993 and had over the years faded in the humid Texas Gulf heat.
First, a sander was used to remove dirt and flaking paint, followed by a soft brush. Tape was applied to mask off the edge of the marker. Next came two coats of black lacquer spray paint over all of the marker’s front surface, allowing time for the paint to dry between each coat. Once the second coat was dry, the paint was gently sanded off the raised letters on the marker.
After carefully brushing away the paint which had been sanded from the raised letters, two coats of clear lacquer were sprayed on the surface, again allowing for drying between coats.
As you can see from the before and after pictures, the difference is astonishing. Thank you very much Lynne & Donna!
The full text of the historical marker is as follows:
“In 1874 Galveston County voters narrowly approved $500,000 in bonds to finance construction of a railroad line from the City of Galveston that would bypass Houston, its business rival, and reach across Texas and beyond to Santa Fe, New Mexico. Henry Rosenberg, president of the Gulf, Colorado, & Santa Fe Railway Company (GCSF) broke ground at the 37th and Mechanic Street on May 1, 1875. In 1879 the company completed a 50-mile line west to Richmond that included a 2¼ mile wooden bridge spanning the length of Galveston Bay.
Prominent Galveston Businessman George Sealy bought the GCSF Company at public auction on April 15, 1879. Sealy led efforts to construct a vital spur line to Houston, acquire east Texas rail interest to supply rail ties, install telegraph lines, and establish numerous towns along the main rail line including Rosenberg, Sealy, Temple, Killeen, Goldwaithe, and Ballinger.
GCSF joined the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway (ATSF) in 1886 and by 1900 had added the popular Harvey House Hotels and Restaurants to its line. By introducing innovative radio communications in 1944 GCSF greatly expanded Galveston National Rail Connections. Although GCSF was officially bought out by ATSF in 1965 various rail companies continued to use its former lines.”