Arts, Culture, and Humanities

Hagerstown & Frederick Railway Historical Society Incorporated

aka HFRHS, Inc.



The Hagerstown and Frederick Railway Historical Society is dedicated to promoting and preserving the heritage of the trolley line that served Washington and Frederick Counties in Maryland. We offer historical and technical data, as well as educational information to members and the public.

Ruling Year



Alex Postpischil

Main Address

PO BOX 1314



Education, Preservation





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Historical Societies & Historic Preservation (A82)

IRS Filing Requirement

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Programs + Results

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Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Mobile Exhibit Outreach

Where we work

Charting Impact

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SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

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What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

The long term goals and priorities of the H&FRHS center not only around the continual outreach and education of the public as to the local importance of the regional trolley network and the preservation of those items which tell that story, but also with the expansion and growth of the organization into a more responsible and professional institution. While we currently provide loaned exhibits and guest lectures to regional institutions and organizations and maintain our archives and operations under the generosity of a long-time member and his business, we intend to someday offer a research and exhibit center dedicated solely to the function of presenting and housing our artifacts and functions on a limited year-round basis and preparing a more accessible and technologically standard public research facility for those interested in learning more and furthering the understanding of our subject matter and its associated topics in local area community, transportation and power generation history and culture. While any adequate facility would serve this purpose it is our desire to someday acquire or be housed within one of approximately a dozen surviving structures that remain from the days of trolley operations.

Despite limited assets and volunteers our organization has entered a period of slow growth over the past several years through continual outreach at area functions, interaction with local history and community organizations and exhibitions which have gained area media attention. Through various fundraising efforts we have endeavored to and expect to raise the minimum funds for the creation of an Endowment Fund managed by the Community Foundation of Frederic County which will provide further financial assets for our continual growth and operations. Due to the somewhat limited scope of our subject matter, available sources of donation are limited and other avenues of fundraising are frequently being examined by board and volunteers. We have also put a great volunteer focus on bringing our archival collections up to more suitably responsible storage and documentation standards and as of 2020 have applied for grants to further advance the quality of our archives and our ability to document oral history from those with personalized information and memories about the trolley system.

The volunteers of the H&FRHS continually strive to meet the demands of the public interest in local trolley history. Our perpetual goals are actively met through continual public engagement while the long term goal of a future research center will be the result of perseverance in that engagement and outreach.

The continual growth of membership and increased donations assist us in defining our success. Perpetual and new membership as well as donations received through various means shows that the interest in our efforts is being recognized and supported by a portion of the community. Public interest at events and through requests for lecture programs are also gauges of our success at fulfilling our mission and the majority of our ongoing goals. In addition the growth of our archives through private donations helps us to gauge the value of our archival efforts by ensuring our organization that our improved care and accessibility of artifacts is recognized and appreciated.

As of 2019 we have increased our lecture program from only one program in 2016 to seven programs in 2019. After several years with minimal exhibitions our exhibits were requested for a cumulative 8 months over 2019 as well. Between 2015 and 2019 membership has grown from less than 10 active perpetual members to over 35. In the matter of the H&FRHS Archives we have performed an initial documentation of over 1100 individual objects, documents and photographs and will begin detailed documentation on these objects during 2020.

How We Listen

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

Source: Self-reported by organization

the feedback loop
check_box We shared information about our current feedback practices.
How is the organization collecting feedback?
We regularly collect feedback through: paper surveys.
How is the organization using feedback?
We use feedback to: to make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations.
With whom is the organization sharing feedback?
We share feedback with: the people we serve, our board.
What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?
It is difficult to: it is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, it is difficult to identify actionable feedback.

External Reviews



Hagerstown & Frederick Railway Historical Society Incorporated

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2015 and 2014
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Board Leadership Practices

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SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Not Applicable


Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Not Applicable


Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Not Applicable

Organizational Demographics

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? This organization has voluntarily shared information to answer this important question and to support sector-wide learning. GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/04/2019


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