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 Post subject: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:07 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:26 am
Posts: 3890
Location: Maine
Apparently, West Virginia "gets it" regarding railroad heritage. We stopped in the visitors bureau outside Huntington, where I picked up a bunch of different rail museum brochures, and one written by the state, called "West Virginia's Railroad Heritage". On top of that, the two attendants could immediately name the various locomotive attractions in the state, and thus, were able to guide me to the two displays in Huntington.

The first is an Elk River Coal and Lumber, Mikado, displayed outside the visitor's bureau in town. The cab is stripped and firebox sealed, but inspite of that, the little Mike really looks quite good. Paint is needed, but there is no obvious deterioration, other than the jewelry that has been ripped off. There is a an open end observation, caddy-corner to the loco, labelled B&O, "Collis P. Huntington". The ob needs new paint. I couldn't see inside.
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The best came last, kind of like dessert. This locomotive has been pictured in this forum earlier this year, and I was delighted to see it in person. C&O 1308 is amazing. The railroad history group that maintains the little park has done an amazing job of preserving the collection behind the fence. There are also an SD-50 cab, an 0-4-0 saddle tanker, two cabooses, and a small velocipede on a short track. Around the base of the 2-6-6-2, is a G scale track.
1308 is intact, well painted, without rust or other corrosion. There does not appear to be any lagging leakage, either. If the lagging was removed, it was done by people who cared about the result. At any rate, 1308 looks ready to be fired and work the hump yard. Incidentally, the railroad park is connected to a community education center, called "Safety Town", set up with a miniature community, including local buildings, streets and highways. I suspect this is frequently used, and frequently patrolled, which may be a good part of why the railroad park is in such good shape.

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:26 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 1:45 am
Posts: 313
Location: Alaska
I was curious as to what one of those articulateds looked like. Last week I was loaned a C&O whistle off one of those (1300 series) engines. It was purchased on eBay mistakenly identified as an L&N several months ago, just in case anyone follows whistles. I got a recording of it to document the sound in case whoever reading this is interested. Neat to see an example of the engine. Thanks for the post.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWkh02ilF0E

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:45 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:21 am
Posts: 395
This is my hometown, and I'll be there Thanksgiving weekend. My understanding is that the #1308 is one of the, if not THE last locomotive built by Baldwin in 1949. The passenger car behind #10 was only recenly turned perpendicular to the loco, so that the old B&O depot has better visibility and access. For several years, #10 was displayed/lettered as a B&O loco. When the city removed the asbestos a few years ago, I pleaded that they reletter it properly as ERC&L, but don't know if I actually had any input.......but glad it is lettered ERC&L.
Summer before last, I was in the area of the BC&G/ERC&L and decided to "railfan" the abandoned line. The track is intact, but this "railfan" activity should only be attempted by those with 4 wheel drive and gusto, as my little 2 wheel drive truck and the setting sun left me quite concerned in some areas. Talk about a RR in the middle of nowhere!!


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:53 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:21 am
Posts: 395
I think the sister engine #1309 was the last, making #1308 "next to last". Also, I know Baldwin built diesels.....I'm talking steam. I just don't associate the name Baldwin with diesel....kinda like remembering Porsche is associated with Volkswagen.


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:01 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 10:56 am
Posts: 1330
Location: Roanoke Va.
1308 and it's park are owned and maintained by the C. P. Huntington Chapter NRHS. They run the annual "New River Trains" excursions each October and maintain several passenger cars to Amtrak standards. Good folks

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:08 am 

Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 7:57 am
Posts: 2377
Location: Faulkland, Delaware
I have a real soft sport for the BC&G/Elk River. Old #10, she was a gob pile engine and did not get the attention the BC&G engines got but I'm sure there are tons of great stories she could tell. If I were a little older I would have been there with cameras in hand.

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:12 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:05 am
Posts: 106
Location: Australia
Great displays, pity they only had an SD50 cab rather than an SD50 locomotive. I bet there wont be too many of them preserved.

Wes

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:35 am 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3305
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
It may be hard to believe, but I was told back in the 1970s that there was a proposal to steam the 1308!

This was to have been another variation on the Cass formula. The engine would have been based out of the now-gone enginehouse at Thurmond, and would have run on a line that is also now gone to a place called Minden. The movement would have had two switchbacks in it--one right after leaving the long, skinny, preserved two-story station at Thurmond to get the train onto the branch that crossed the New River, and again after crossing the river to start up the line to Minden.

That line clung to hillsides as it climbed above the river, and had at least one side-hill bridge on it. The opposite terminal, Minden, was rather unusual in not only having a coal mine, but a fairly large hopper car repair shop run by the Berwind-White Coal Company. Berwind-White was one of the few "private car lines" (reporting marks BWCX, and NR&PCCCO, for New River & Pocahontas Consolidated Coal Company) to operate hopper cars in the steam era (most such private car operators ran reefers, tank cars, and some stock cars).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berwind_Corporation

http://www.coalcampusa.com/sowv/river/minden/minden.htm

Nothing ever came of this, but it is fascinating to contemplate a tourist railroad in West Virginia that would have taken the coal theme, much as Cass has done with the logging theme.


Last edited by J3a-614 on Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:11 am 

Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2004 3:07 pm
Posts: 653
It should be pointed out that C&O 1308 was the next to last BLW steam loco built for a DOMESTIC US railroad. Baldwin/BLH continued to build steam, mostly for export, into the 1950s. One non-export loco was that odd 2-8-0 for USATC in 1952.

That C&O would order ten 2-6-6-2s to a WWI design as late as 1948/49 was always a bit of a mystery to me. Of course they were also buying five other wheel arrangements (0-8-0, 4-6-4, 4-8-4, 2-8-4, 2-6-6-6) that late too, a misguided loco policy if there ever was one. All that took a sudden turn to diesel in 1950, evidence that someone at the head shed finally had a collision with reality.

That's the business view of the situation. We railfans had an entirely different view of course, and it was a glorious one while it lasted. Fortunately there was N&W to take up the cause of steam for a few more years.

BTW, where is C&O 1309 preserved?


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:37 am 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:21 am
Posts: 395
Quote:
BTW, where is C&O 1309 preserved?

Methinks B&O museum, Baltimore.


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:29 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 12:05 pm
Posts: 329
Location: Philadelphia, Pa
OF course, when Baldwin became BLH, they built 42" gauge steam for the Guayaquil & Quito in 1953, two of which are still servicable.


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:18 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5275
Mark Jordan wrote:
Quote:
BTW, where is C&O 1309 preserved?

Methinks B&O museum, Baltimore.


Mark -

You are right. She is one of the pieces of equipment on display out in front of the museum.

BTW, the 1309 is one of the steam locomotives that we have a record of as actually running through North Judson, Indiana where our museum is located.

Les Beckman (Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum/North Judson, IN)


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:32 pm 

Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 4:02 pm
Posts: 1071
Location: Back in NE Ohio
u25b wrote:
Great displays, pity they only had an SD50 cab rather than an SD50 locomotive. I bet there wont be too many of them preserved.

Wes


At least one CSX SD50, 8595, is supposed to be preserved. It's significance is that it was the LAST locomotive to be purchased for the B&O (under Chessie System). If you see it, you should see a painted box under the cab (I think on both sides) that says something like, "Do Not Dismantle, Hold for B&O Museum", and gives a contact number. There are at least two other locomotives on CSX similarly tagged, 6341 (formerly B&O 4447, the last GP40-2 purchased by the B&O) and (I think ) 6063 in Florida (former EMD anniversary unit GM50).


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:53 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3305
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
"I got a recording of it to document the sound in case whoever reading this is interested."--John Hillier

And a wonderful sound, too! I guess I like hooters, I can't say they are the best sounding whistles, but they are the most fitting for West Virginia coal haulers, sounding as mournful as they do.

"BTW, the 1309 is one of the steam locomotives that we have a record of as actually running through North Judson, Indiana where our museum is located."--Les Beckman

That's fascinating to read! I would hardly believe one of those machines--and that one in particular--would have made it out that far west, on the C&O of Indiana. Supposedly that line was largely 2-8-2 territory, and didn't have the heavy coal traffic of the line to Columbus. Wonder what it was doing out there? One of those engines would be powerful, about the tractive effort and weight of a 2-8-4, but it wouldn't be a speed demon.

No. 1309:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/lionel682/ ... /lightbox/

Needs a bit of paint here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/8391775@N0 ... /lightbox/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/piedmont_f ... /lightbox/

Something you don't always see close-up--the overfire jets, meant to introduce secondary air and reduce smoke:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/scattered/ ... /lightbox/

A classic face--for the C&O:

http://www.steamlocomotive.com/bomuseum/co1309-3.jpg

That C&O would order ten 2-6-6-2s to a WWI design as late as 1948/49 was always a bit of a mystery to me."--David H. Hamley

It's a fascinating story that goes back to the original engines of 1910, and their replacement with big simple-expansion 2-8-8-2s in the later 1920s. The original 2-6-6-2s, ranging in classes from H-1 to H-6, had been front-line freight power until the H-7 2-8-8-2s started to arrive. Fortunately, the 2-6-6-2s turned out to be excellent coal branch engines, with plenty of power, a power curve at maximum in the 25 mph range (right where you would need it in this secondary service), and an overall relatively small size for an articulated (at least compared to later engines) that could fit around mine tipples and negotiate branch trackage (rigid wheelbase was only 10 feet, about a foot longer than a six-wheel passenger truck).

C&O had a good investment in these locomotives--the road eventually rostered something like 200 of them, and used them in service about the way other roads would use 2-8-0s. That included mixed trains on some of the branches, which of course in this coal country, could be far longer and heavier than what you would see elsewhere.

It was not unusual to see these engines doubleheaded on these branch trains; they very often would split at a junction between two branches, one working the mines of one line, and the other working the second line and its mines.

These engines were a near perfect fit in this secondary service, but by the 1940s, many were wearing out. No new designs had been developed for secondary services, yet these engines performed very well, so the C&O ordered 25 to be replacements in kind. Unfortunately, there was a lot of labor unrest in the coal country at the time, and as a result of the lack of coal production, C&O wound up in financial trouble just after it had spent all kinds of money on new locomotives, passenger and freight cars, and some rather large line improvements. As an economy move, the road trimmed the order to the ten locomotives that got built--and it turns out the last domestic, common-carrier delivered from Eddystone was one of these later engines in class H-6.

Now, if only West Virginia really did have a railroad act together. . .that would be something!


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 Post subject: Re: Two locomotives in Huntington, W.V.
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:40 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3305
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
No. 1308 has been the subject of at least one special photo session in recent years:

http://www.pbase.com/chase55671/msrlha_ ... ight_shoot

http://www.railpictures.net/showphotos. ... =CO%201308

http://www.pbase.com/tcbookout/co_h6_1308

Who wouldn't want to see this one--and her sister in Baltimore--running again? Running together?:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.p ... 568&nseq=1

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.p ... 491&nseq=2

http://www.pbase.com/tcbookout/image/127795037


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