Monday, June 13, 2016

E. L. Moore, The Almost Clinician

Awhile back I noted that Kalmbach Publishing had invited E. L. Moore to write a beginner’s book on how to build N-scale model railroads. He turned it down. Around the same time he was invited to give a clinic at the NMRA Mid-Eastern Region’s May ’68 convention in Hampton, Virginia on how he built model buildings. He turned that one down too.

It all started with a handwritten letter from Mr. George R. Johnson,


Office of the Vice-President

6516 Haystack Rd.
Alexandria, Va. 22310

Jan 15, 1968

M. E. L. Moore

Dear Mr Moore:

The Mid Eastern Region will hold its semi annual convention May 17, 18 & 19th at Hampton, Va.

This is an invitation for you to present a clinic. From your articles in the R.M.C. your favorite modeling [illegible] are buildings and scenery. We would be pleased if you would consider acceptance.

The clinics will be presented on Sunday morning. At this time, we are planning giving each one two times lasting about 50 minutes time. You can use your choice of [illegible] slides [illegible] chalk & blackboard or what have you.

On Saturday will be a trip to Ft Eustis, Va to [illegible] and a town of C & O’s Hampton Roads ship terminal.

Hope to hear from you after your consideration.

signed George R. Johnson

In today’s world he could have Skyped the whole thing, or had someone record a digital video, but back then the only option was going to the convention, and that's why he  turned it down. If I ever get my time machine working, I’ll bring my trusty little Canon and post the videos here when I get back ;-)

22 January ’68

George R. Johnson,
6516 Haystack Rd.,
Alexandria, Va.

Dear Mr. Johnson . . . .

Thanks for the invite, but the answer will have to be “no”. I’m just not cut out for public speaking, clinics, or what have you, and I’m too damned old to begin now. Like my work, which I do on the seat of my pants, that’s the way I do my talking -- with a typewriter in front of me. And besides that I detest crowds and traveling.

Lest you think me anti-social, glad to have any of you fellows, anyone at all, stop in to see me should you be passing through Charlotte, I enjoy gabbing and listening. I’m always home of an evening, in and out during the day.

Any one phoning shouldn’t be discouraged if the response is “Kelley’s Pool Hall”, or “Mamie’s Pink Poodle Parlor”. It’ll probably be me since no one else lives here.

So that’s the way it is . . . 

signed E. L. Moore

E. L. Moore
525 Oakland Ave., Apt 3

Charlotte, N. C.

In '71 E. L. Moore appeared on tv, on the Carolina Camera show, so he got some fame. I've contacted the station that owns the show several times to investigate its availability, but no response. 

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