Thursday, July 31, 2008

Intrusion alert system completed

Report and photo by Chris Ervin

Yesterday, Dave Mongrain of Alert Team, completed hooking up power to the security alarm and intrusion alert system. Director Hugh Brown provided Dave with support and received some training on the system.

There are still a couple of items remaining to do on the system; 1) "punch down" the auto dialer phone wires on the phone block once it is installed on the backboard, and 2) program the auto dialer with desired phone numbers to call should the alarm be tripped.

Dave intends to complete these items when he comes out to the Rendezvous in October.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Certificate of occupancy issued by County

General Contractor Dan Cordova (left) receives the certificate of occupancy from San Bernardino County Building Inspector Steven Given.

Report by Dennis Casebier
Photos by Hugh Brown

This morning, General Contractor Dan Cordova and Building Inspector Steven Given met and went over the building. The bottom-line result was that Inspector Given signed off on our final certificate of occupancy - the building is now ours!

Everyone associated with this is authorized to take great pride in this achievement. And of course special credit goes to Chris and Leslie Ervin for administering the grant and all that they do.

General Contractor Dan Cordova presents the Library/Depot certificate of occupancy to MDHCA Director and Secretary Hugh Brown.

President Steve Mongrain informed me that he has in his possession three large GOFFS depot signs that are to be placed on the new building. They are to scale with the originals and made of metal. He said he also has on order two full-sized Santa Fe Railway herald signs to be placed on the building. He said all these signs will be given to the MDHCA courtesy of his company, Vegas Valley Business Forms.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Tortoise fence removal

Report and photo by Dennis Casebier

Mark Wire got the tortoise fencing material removed from around the Library/Depot today. That leaves the pegs. Gail Andress intends to use the tractor to remove the pegs tomorrow and then smooth out where the fence had been. He'll also bring fill dirt in to build up in front of the handicapped parking pad.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Climate control systems activated

Report and photo by Dennis Casebier

It was a busy day at Goffs today.

Brandon the painter had stayed overnight in the Dutchmen Trailer. Phil Motz provided him dinner last night and they sat out under the Green Tree working on the world's problems until a late hour. Indications are they made a lot of progress. Brandon finished up his painting and was gone by about noon today. I believe that's the last we'll see of the painter.

General Contractor Dan Cordova was here this morning. He got the plywood backboard mounted on the north wall of the north Freight House room and Brandon painted it. This backboard will be used for centralizing the phone, data, Internet, and CATV wiring.

Donnie Millard of "Desert Air" showed up during the morning and was here until 4:00 PM. He activated the heating, air conditioning, and humidity control systems. Just before he left, Jo Ann, Phil and I assembled over there. The whole building was chilled. On a day with the humidity standing at 35% and the temperature at 104 degrees -- it was wonderful.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

MDHCA Board Reviews Library Construction

Report and photo by Chris Ervin

Today, as part of the regularly scheduled meeting, the MDHCA Board of Directors did a walk-through review of the nearly completed Library/Depot building.

Director Chris Ervin and other board members discussed the layout of the first floor reading room, how researchers would be received, and the possible furnishes they might encounter.

Director Ervin has been tasked with developing a strawman room layout to present to the Board with the goal of having some furnishings in place by the time of building dedication at the Rendezvous in October.

Later in the afternoon, at around 4:00 PM, a monsoonal thunderstorm moved over Goffs and dropped about an inch of rain in about 20 minutes. Water was running in the streets and the wind was pushing the rain sideways. It was a wild storm with thunder, lightning and quite the downpour. It was a good test of the new Library roof. No leaks.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Inspection and phones

Report and photo by Dennis Casebier

Inspector Steve Given was on site today with general contractor Dan Cordova developing a list of final items needing to be done before finalization.

The phone rang just now in the Casebier house. It was Phil Motz calling from the Library Depot! Then he called back on our second (fax) line! So the Library/Depot is in communications with the rest of the planet! All thanks to very hard and hot work by Mr. Motz with a little help at times.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Odds and ends

Report by Dennis Casebier

General Contractor Dan Cordova and two of his crew arrived at about 7:00 AM this morning. They are working on Library/Depot odds and ends. Finishing up!

Here are some upcoming activities;
  • Tomorrow 9 July the safety glass will be put into three upstairs windows as required.
  • Thursday we are scheduled to have the final inspection on the building (we have a bottle of champagne chilling in the frige.
  • Next Tuesday the HVAC guys will be out and fire up the air conditioning systems.
  • That leaves the one door that needs to get painted green. Dan said Brandon & Co will be out to do that.
It is 110 degrees out there on our front porch at noon. Phil Motz is out in the heat working on the electrical for the water system.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Ditch dug for the phone lines

Report and photos by Dennis Casebier

Much hard work has been accomplished over the past few days in getting the phone lines to the new building. It wasn't until mid-week that we were able to settle with Dan Cordova on a point to bring the phone lines into the building.

In order to accomplish it we had to dig a ditch a little over 200 feet long to carry the line from the Power House to the northwest side of the building where the line will enter. But the job is done and Phil will now be able to get the phones through into the building before he leaves on the 17th.

I say the job is done but it isn't exactly. We still have to string the line from the Power House to the power pole near Lanfair Road. Phil and I can do that.

This important and difficult work has been accomplished over a holiday weekend in intense heat - by Phil Motz, Hugh Brown, and myself. It was very hot working out there on that ditch!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Baseboards and clean-up

Report by Dennis Casebier

Dan Cordova and two of his guys showed up at about 8:00 AM. They will be putting in the baseboards and cleaning in and around the building. He figures they likely won't get done today and will be back tomorrow.

One of the on-demand water heaters in the Lounge/restroom isn't working. The plumber will be coming out next week to replace it.

Phil has procured all the materials he needs to complete the phoneline to the Library/Depot.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

An Endowment to Keep the Goffs Cultural Center Operating in Perpetuity


After four years, thanks to you, we have beat our fundraising goal of $250,000!

by Dennis G. Casebier

Over the past couple of years we’ve been soliciting funds from you, our membership, to furnish and equip the new Library/Depot. Through your support and generosity we reached our goal of $250,000 some time ago. Thank you!

The grant we received for construction of the beautiful new building is of the reimbursement type. We contract for things and when the contractor submits an invoice to us, we must pay the invoice. Then we submit our own invoice to the California Cultural and Historical Endowment (CCHE) for the amount paid to the various contractors and other expenses and in time we are reimbursed by CCHE. Of course, this implies we have large amounts of money on hand to pay the contractors so we can first pay them and then ask for reimbursement. We have been using the $250,000 raised from you for that purpose. Clearly, then, that $250,000 pops out at the end and can be used to furnish and equip the building as originally intended. This is all working well and we look forward to having the $250,000 to finish off the job at hand later this year and early next year. We’ll be acquiring tables, chairs, lamps, filing cabinets, shelving, computers, and many other items needed to properly fit out this library.

The creation of this new building presents us with fantastic opportunities to better serve the public and to more properly preserve our priceless collections into the future. To better capitalize on these opportunities, we are laying plans to ensure this facility will exist in perpetuity. To accomplish that, we need an endowment. The endowment we are structuring will be a large amount of money that sits in a financial institution and yields dividends. Those proceeds will then be used to manage and operate the facility here. The principal on the endowment will never be spent; only the income on that principal will be used to fund operations.

For example, a part of the revenue generated will be used to pay a stipend to someone to operate the Goffs Cultural Center. You know, like Jo Ann and I have been doing for 18 years, except we never got paid! As our age advances and health issues pile up, it has become clear even to us that we likely won’t be living forever and we won’t likely be able to stay here many more years. This becomes our biggest and most vital challenge—i.e., making provisions for this place to operate in perpetuity when Dennis and Jo Ann go off to their reward.

And so we ask you to dip into your pockets once again and join with us over the next several years while we accumulate money in an endowment fund. A special account is being opened and any monies donated for the endowment will be carefully segregated and deposited directly into that account. A fund manager will be selected and appointed by the Board of Directors of the MDHCA to oversee this resource. The endowment fund will also have a carefully defined mission statement and will be managed by a special Board of Directors. In addition to asking our membership to contribute to the fund, we will be seeking grants and support from private sources.

So the time to begin is now. This is the next step we must take to ensure that the great accomplishments of the MDHCA membership will exist forever in Goffs. There are several ways you can personally participate in this important initiative. You can simply write a check, payable to the MDHCA. Please write “Endowment Fund” in the memo space on your check.

Another completely different approach that many will find useful is to make a provision for the MDHCA Endowment Fund in your will. I have done that myself, and I have knowledge of several other members who have taken this step as well. These contributions will be invaluable to those providing leadership to the MDHCA and the Goffs Cultural Center in the years to come.

A receipt for tax purposes will be sent to each donor whenever a donation is made toward the Endowment Fund. There will also be special recognition in the Mojave Road Reports and through other methods yet to be developed.

Everyone who comes to Goffs and sees what has been accomplished by the MDHCA over the past 15 years is amazed. Frankly, I am amazed myself. This endowment will ensure this success continues.

If you would like to discuss any aspect of this new initiative, please contact Dennis G. Casebier by phone at 760-733-4848 or email at

Finishing touches on the water system

Report by Dennis Casebier

There have been no workers here yet this week. Dan Cordova and crew are expected to be here as early as tomorrow to put in door closers, base boards, and maybe an illuminated address sign.

Phil Motz has been busy working with the water system. Both the north and south systems are on line and we are using water out of both. Also he obtained materials in town yesterday to put in lights in the Power House and the new north Pump House. Lights are designed to come on when Deep Well #2 pump is on and when the booster pumps in the north Pump House are on.

Phil has also picked up ceiling fans which he will install in the new building.

It's very hot in Goffs today and along the Colorado River Valley.