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Copyright © 2018
MADISON--John E. Gruber, a founder and first president (1997 to 2013) of the Center for Railroad Photography & Art, Madison, died Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018, of esophageal cancer. He edited the center's journal, Railroad Heritage, through 2012 and continued as president through 2013.

He was author of many articles and books, most recently, a book, Beebe and Clegg: Their Enduring Photographic Legacy, with John Ryan and Mel Patrick, published by the Center for Railroad Photography & Art (2018). An exhibit complementing the book opened September 21 at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento.

He was a free-lance railroad photographer since 1960. His personal documentation of preservation and commitment to its realization extended from the 1960s to his death. He is known for his portraits of railroad workers in their workplaces.

Gruber, son of Edward David and Leah Elizabeth, was born May 18, 1936, in Chicago. A sister, Mary Lee (now Olson), followed in 1939. A family vacation on the San Juan Express resulted in John's lifelong love of narrow gauge railroading. He graduated from Prairie du Sac High School in 1954 and from the University of Wisconsin Journalism School in 1959, followed by graduate work in landscape architecture. He was editor of the Daily Cardinal in 1957.

He worked in the UW Publications, as editor and manager, from 1960 to 1995. He edited Vintage Rails magazine from 1995 to 1999, followed by his work at CRP&A.

Gruber was a volunteer editor for Mid-Continent Railway Historical Society in past years and the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society more recently.

He married Bonnie Jean Barstow in 1962. They have two children, Richard (husband of the former Bonnie Jean Evert), Prairie du Sac, and Timothy, Madison; two grandchildren, Martin and Tamara; three step-grandchildren, Amy, Andrew, and Adam Yanke; four step-great-grandchildren; and five nephews.

A funeral service will be at LUTHER MEMORIAL CHURCH, 1021 University Ave., at 1 p.m. on Saturday, October 27, 2018, with visitation at noon and a reception after the service.

Cress Funeral and Cremation Service
3610 Speedway Rd, Madison
(608) 238-3434
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Part of the Bruce Meyer collection
by D. Evenson
Through September 2018 LSRHA has received 18 collections via donations from dedicated collectors of rail history.
Among some of the major acquisitions are the Bruce Meyer photo slide collection consisting of over 6,000 slides and 2,000 photos. Thanks to Bonnie Meyer, LSRHA will be the caretaker of Bruces extensive collection of EMD builder's slides and other great photographic images.
The family of Don Ginter donated the rest of his Fairbanks Morse collection to Lake States It consists of company documents catalogs, manuals and builders photos of FM diesels.
Additional Sheffield material was also included in the collection.
The third large collection came from the Edward Wilkommen estate in Wauwatosa, WI. An estimated 10,000 images of railroads world wide shows Ed's love of travel through thousands of negatives, large format slides, and photo prints. It will be a challenge to catalog this collection.
In the future we will highlight some of the images on the LSRHA web site.
Here is the August newsletter. Check out the photos from Bruce Meyer collection and some ICRR glass negatives thanks to the scanning prowess of Paul Swanson.
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Rory Peterson, Belvidere, IL and Larry Foht, Rockford, IL placing Ritzman prints into the new archival sleeves obtained through a grant from the Wisconsin Historical Society.
by D. Evenson
We are happy to announce that we have received a mini-grant from the Wisconsin Historical Society in the amount of $500. This is a matching grant so we have to raise an additional $500 in order to receive the grant. The money will be used to purchase archival sleeves for the safe storing of photographic prints in the Ritzman collection so they are available for viewing. Right now the prints are stored in numerous boxes that are not favorable to good photographic preservation.
Your help is needed to raise the additional $500 for the archival sleeves. You may send your contributions to Lake States Railway Historical Association, 330 Lynn Street, Baraboo, WI 53913. Mark your donation "Ritzman project". Any contribution is gratefully appreciated.


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One of FM's builders books showing diesel locomotives ready for shipping.
by D. Evenson
Become a member of Lake States Railway Historical Association, Inc. and help support the preservation of railroad history. It takes money to preserve the many documents, photos and other ephemera so that modelers, historians, authors and others interested in early railroading can access what we have in our archives.
As a member you will receive our quarterly news letters and first hand information as to what is happening at LSRHA.