A double life
Starr feels a similar commitment to the state of Vermont. His family has lived in North Troy for generations.
His career as politician and truck driver keeps him on his toes.
“It’s a total change – what I do at home compared to down there [at the state capitol],” Starr says. “I’m glad to go down there but glad to get back to the real world and deal with real people.”
Though he suffers some teasing from other government officials about his love for the open road, Starr brushes it off, glad to still be trucking after all these years.
“Most politicians don’t work like truck drivers do,” Starr says. “And I can outwit most of them.”
Today’s big rigs offer the latest in styling and power. But in the 18th century, the gala carriage was the height of sophisticated technology, pulled by six horses and manned by liverymen in front and back.
Freightliner is helping return one gilded gala coach to its former grandeur. The truck manufacturer donated $100,000 to the Portland Art Museum for the restoration.
The coach, one of only a few left intact, was originally constructed in the 1750s. It belonged to Ludwig VIII, Landgraf of Hesse-Darmstadt, a member of the noble German family Hesse, which has connections to royal families all over Europe.
“At the time, this was state-of-the-art technology,” says Jeffrey Fisher, Freightliner director of corporate communications. “The coach signals mobility and transport, and there is a connection between that and trucking.”
Freightliner is part of Daimler-Chrysler, which is a German-American automotive company.
“We take great pride in our companies’ international reputation,” says Fisher, “and we are delighted to help others get a glimpse of transportation engineering from an artistic perspective.”
A team of experts worked on the coach for eight months, refinishing the gold carvings and leather upholstery. The Cinderella style of this carriage is no accident. The famous fairy tale collectors, the Brothers Grimm, were frequent visitors to the Hessian court and are believed to have modeled some of their stories after it.
The coach will be displayed through March 29 at the Portland Art Museum, along with other artworks from the Hesse family’s collection, and then returned to the Schlossmuseum in Darmstadt, Germany.
Trucking from Anxiety to Zen
Frustrated with the politics of her social work occupation and ready for a life change, Joyce Cascio decided to embrace truck driving and ultimately achieve her life dream – becoming a writer.