Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

Mojave Chamber Caboose Moves to Storage

Short Flights

After decades of sitting on Reno's Restaurant parking lot, with permission from Reno Riccomini, the classic 1950 Southern Pacific caboose owned by the Mojave Chamber of Commerce has been temporarily moved into storage. Last month the former office of the Mojave Chamber of Commerce was given thirty days to move their caboose off of the property by the present day owner.

Mojave Chamber of Commerce hired local general contractor, Al Hansen, to move the caboose to storage until a new location could be obtained. Hansen had placed the caboose in Reno's parking lot originally in the mid to late 1970s. Dor Hansen, is working on this project with his father. The July 10, 2014 deadline was met, and the caboose is now off of the property and in storage.

RST Cranes Inc. of Tehachapi, CA was hired to do the heavy lifting. RST brought a huge 100-ton crane and it was a pleasure to watch them work together in fine precision!

Back in the 1970s Al used his 1946 Browning crane to position the caboose that came from the Purdy Company. The caboose was hauled by Lee Bowen of Mojave, CA. What a difference between the two cranes!

The great artwork on the caboose, depicting a gold miner, steam train and the round the world Voyager aircraft, was designed and painted by Dan and Rojona Kreigh around 1996 or 1997.

The concrete ramp leading up to the caboose door and the concrete footings were demolished and the spot where the caboose sat is being restored with new asphalt.

Mojave resident Doug Burdick wore his Mojave Mural t-shirt from the Mojave Transportation Museum Foundation to honor Mojave's heritage and the moving of the caboose.

Southern Pacific railroad established the township of Mojave in 1876.

Special thanks to Terra-Gen Power, LLC, who donated money to the Mojave Chamber of Commerce to refurbish the caboose in 2011 when Rheta Scott was chamber president. The money has been saved all this time for caboose refurbishment and a possible move.

Mojave Chamber of Commerce President, Doug Clipperton, said, "I think the caboose move will be a positive step for the chamber that will give new energy to our Revitalize Mojave project."

"An attractive Visitor Center with the caboose all spruced up inside and out, as a centerpiece, will be a real boost for Mojave!"