Letters to the Editor
Reprinted from "INSULATORS - Crown Jewels of the Wire", April 1983, page 26
Dear Don & Dora,
I didn't mean to let my
subscription run out. So here's 18.00 for a first class subscription.
been very active in insulator collecting since I got married a little over a
year ago. But I wouldn't be without C.J. of the Wire every month. I still have
my EC&M collection and collections of color-shape and carnivals.
wanting to write a couple articles for C.J., but just haven't had the time. Now
with summer coming on, I may not get to it.
Here's a couple invoices you may
want to reprint in C.J. The originals are in my collection.
Keep up the good
work with the magazine. I don't know where the hobby would be without it.
(Invoices are reprinted on the
following two pages. Thanks.)
Large Image (182 Kb)
Large Image (124 Kb)
For about a year now I have had an insulator
in my display case that stands out from all the rest. It is a beautiful
strawberry red. The color has been flashed on and is very even and well done.
The insulator is an Armstrong's No 9 Back - MADE IN U.S.A. A (in circle) 16 50..
I have not
been able to find out if Armstrong even made any flashed insulators, more less a
red one. I have felt that, up until now, the insulator was fake.
But, as I read
the sales lists in C.J. I see there are more and more flashed insulators turning
up, and I am beginning to wonder about the one I have.
I don't plan to throw
away this insulator, but I would like to know if it is for real. I would
appreciate any information I can get on this subject.
Fred R. Collier,
Rt. 1 Box 418
Ruckersville, VA 22968
Throughout my eleven years
of collecting insulators I had heard stories of the old telegraph line which ran
through East Texas during the 1850's and 1860's. Somewhere I had heard that
threadless insulators had been found buried in Galveston, Texas.
had quite a history. It was named by the Spanish in 1785 after Count Bernardo de
Galvez, Viceroy of Mexico. From 1815 to 1821 the Island was used by Buccaneer
Jean Laffite as a base for his piracy operations in the Gulf of Mexico. In 1839
Galveston received its city charter. Because it was at the mouth of the Trinity
River and lies near deep water, it became a fast growing port city. Then in 1900
a hurricane struck the island killing 6,000 people, one of the worst disasters
of all times. Industry and commerce then moved to the town of Harrisburg, now
consumed by Houston.
So being somewhat of a Texas history indulger and long time
insulator collector, I decided to search for information about those early days
of the Texas Telegraph. I logically started searching in Galveston. There in the
City Archives I found the enclosed information on this line. It was fascinating
reading and I quickly drew out a map of the Telegraph line after finding out
which towns it went through. Then it suddenly hit me. I had drawn a line right
through Lovelady, Texas. I remembered a young man tell me nine years ago that
there was an old line of insulators that went through their family's land which
was close to Lovelady. I should kick myself for not responding sooner to his
lead, but like so many stories that I hear from non-insulator enthusiasts, I
visioned his old line of insulators to be nothing greater than Heminray 42's.
then bought topographical maps for the area and made several phone calls to try
and locate this guy that I had not seen during the nine year period. My Father,
Brother and I took off for the deep woods of East Texas with an approximate idea
of where the line crossed the property, only to find that the current owner had
bulldozed much of the area the previous Spring. You can imagine how
disappointing it was.
Our search only entailed several miles in the area.
However, there are hundreds more to explore. If anyone out there has additional
information on this telegraph and, more importantly, on the insulators which
were used, I would be eager to hear from them.
Frank W. Shiels
3705 Mockingbird Ln.
Fort Worth, TX 76109
(Following is the map and other
material mentioned above. Thank you, Frank.)