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* Update * Pratt Institute Steam Whistles Blow on New Years 2014

* Update * at the bottom of the post.

If you have been a reader The Old Motor for a while, you know that we like steam-power and everything that goes along with it, so it makes sense to use it to bring in the New Year and our fourth season of publishing the magazine. I grew up hearing the sound of the steam whistle at the Eagle Lock Company in the Terryville, Connecticut, a small factory town. It announced the start and the end of each work day and was used as a call to bring the fireman to the station when there was a fire, but perhaps the best tune it played was the “no school” message on a snowy winter morning.

Watch and listen to the many sounds of the steam whistle heard in the interesting video above, as it brings in the New Year at the Pratt Institute.

* Update * Keith Willams at the New York Times reports:

“A longstanding Brooklyn tradition might end tonight with a blast – literally. Since 1965, Conrad Milster, the chief engineer at Pratt Institute in Fort Greene, has blown in the new year with his private collection of steam whistles. But the loud whistles marking the start of 2014 might be the last to be heard”. 

You can read the rest of the very interesting story by Keith Willams at the New York Times. Just below you can see another short video showing Conrad Milster operating some of his incredible collection of whistles at previous new years event at Pratt.

7 responses to “* Update * Pratt Institute Steam Whistles Blow on New Years 2014

  1. Well that’s an interesting way to greet the new year Dave. A cacophony of steam whistles. They could have used a few colored lights for the steam as it was let off.

  2. Posted for John Stone, Thank you for posting this symphony from a day long gone by. It is a wonderful collection of some of the best steam whistles to be heard anywhere. It made my week, your magazine is the very best that I can tell is run by a genuine enthusiast.

  3. I can remember when all the ships in ny harbor would let loose their whistles on new years eve.Sounded like the end of the world.
    But after ’67 the Coast Guard prohibited it because it was a “hazard to navigation”

    • It appear that most government agencies always have a way of stopping many things that are both fun, harmless and a tradition.

      Maybe this event at Pratt grew out of the Coast Guard shutdown?

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