Railway Preservation News

Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question
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Author:  F.N.Kuenzel [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 12:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

I recently bought a very large 21" x 26" framed picture on Ebay that appears to be a old locomotive builders photo and on the cab of the locomotive under the window are the letters I C R . The seller from Pa. listed it as a Illinois Central Railroad photo.

Okay so i also assumed it was a Illinois Central Railroad loco photo. It now has me wondering a bit? I dug out other old locomotive cabinet card photo's i have from that railroad and under the cab windows are the letters I C R R. So why would this peticular photo i just bought only have I C R instead of I C R R ?

I can't find anything on the web or in any books i have of another RR with the letters I C R. Can anyone here enlighten me why this one old photo would have only I C R instead of the typical I C R R that you see on other locomotive photos and other Illinois Central R R memoribillia?

Here is some other interesting information i found on the photo using a magnifying glass. The locomotive number is #233 and is a 4-6-0 locomotive and on the builders plate on the front side of the boiler i can make out Dickson Locomotive Works the No. looks like maybe a 72131 but i'm not sure? On the plate it also say's Dickson Mfg. Co. Scranton Pa. April 1901. I've never heard of Dickson Locomotive works before but found on the web it was formed in 1856 and became part of Alco in 1901.

Also on the locomotive on the cylinder is a long brass plate attached with Cleveland in large letters on it with smaller words underneath that on the bottom of the plate. Did a company in Cleveland manufacture locomotive cylinders in 1901? Being that the Ebay seller is from Pa. maybe the photo was aquired at some local estate sale in Pa.

Is there some small, now unheard RR from back in 1901 that may have had the letters I C R ? Or did Illionois Central use I C R and I C R R both? For me i'm happy with the $24.99 plus $14 shipping i paid for the nice large old photo, but it would be nice to know what RR it is actually from! Thank you in advance for any information!

Author:  HudsonL [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 12:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

There also was a Iowa Central RR (ICRR) that became part of the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railway, the MSTL has a Yahoo group that may be able to help you.


Author:  David Johnston [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

ICR could be the Intercolonial Railway of Canada. Later part of CNR.

Author:  sbhunterca [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

This is Intercolonial Railway of Canada's 4-6-0 #233. same locomotive?


Steve Hunter

Author:  F.N.Kuenzel [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

Steve & David, Yes! That's the same locomotive photo image as the old large framed one i bought on Ebay! Thank you both for the information on it being a Intercolonial Railway of Canada loco and the photo link of it! That's a railroad i was unfamiliar with and this now helps me to identify the locomotive in my photo wich i'll now put a notation on the backside.


Author:  Great Western [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

Here are some Intercolonial timetables from my collection.

icr2.jpg [ 282.44 KiB | Viewed 6464 times ]
icr.jpg [ 191.7 KiB | Viewed 6464 times ]

Author:  Great Western [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

And a map.

icr4.jpg [ 190.51 KiB | Viewed 6461 times ]

Author:  Jim Vaitkunas [ Thu Aug 15, 2013 11:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

I understand that the Intercolonial Railway was built specifically to have an all-Canada railway to the Maritime Provinces. They didn't want to rely on a railway that passed through a portion of the United States, i.e., the more direct route through northern Maine. It seems that at the time, the loyal citizens of Canada, then a new Commonwealth of Great Britain, were still wary of their Yankee "cousins" to the south. I suppose they feared that if war broke out between Great Britain and the U.S., the rebellious Yankees would cut off rail connection to New Brunswick and beyond. Damn rebels!

The Canadians also built a canal in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario that duplicated the one located about a half-mile to the south on the U.S. side of the border for the same reason.

Seems strange today, but back then...


Author:  David H. Hamley [ Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:50 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

What kind of cylinder and valve system does this loco possess? Don't recall seeing anything like that before. Some sort of tandem compound?

Author:  sbhunterca [ Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:58 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

I noticed that too, David, but didn't ask. I'd love to learn more as well.

Steve Hunter

Author:  OW8206 [ Fri Aug 16, 2013 6:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

The original Dickson ledger gives the following information
builders number 1213
ordered 9/29/1900
delivered 4/24/1901
for Intercolonial Railway
number 233
class 7-A
cylinders 20x26
drivers 72"
gauge standard
fuel Bituminous
wheelbase total 26' 2'', rigid 13' 1"
weight loaded about 155,000
tires 5.5''x3" flanged, 6.5"x3" plain
boiler steel
firebox steel
tubes 276


Author:  Great Western [ Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

From Clegg and Corley's "Canadian National Steam Power" we find:
Canadian National class I-5-a, No. 1536(1) built by Dickson b/n 1213, year 1901, 21x26" cylinders, 72" drivers, 180 psi, TE 24,000, reno'd to Canadian Government Railways No.623, scrapped 6-36.
Footnote says drivers changed to 73" by CNR; also note cylinder may have been bored out when compared to Dickson records?
It is the only engine in that class followed by 6 Dickson engines in class I-5-b, CNR No. 1537 to No.1542, Dickson No.1245 to No.1250 that appear to have similar stats. CGR numbers were 624-629.
Dickson had their own system of compounding with references to "Dean" patent. I have not been able to find details on this at this point.
It would be very interesting to see details on this compound system if anyone has data to share.
Here is a very nice online Dickson book - though from earlier days:
http://books.google.ca/books?id=wERJAAA ... es&f=false
Thank you.

Author:  OW8206 [ Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

Dickson Works classifications were the cylinder diameter followed by a letter which was their code for the Whyte classification.


As to my previous post the listing in the ledger is 20-F, and numbers 234, 235, 236 and 61, 62, 63 were all to the same specs. these were ordered 12-4-1900 and delivered March 1, March 5, March 7, March 10, March 14, April 21, 1902 respectively

Author:  F.N.Kuenzel [ Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

Thank you to all for the information on the Intercolonial Railway of Canada and also the information on locomotive #233 built by the Dickson Locomotive Works. With the mention of the cylinders is there any indication as to why there would be a brass plate with the name CLEVELAND attached above the cylinder? At first i thought maybe that was the name of the locomotive? but there are also a few words with smaller letters along the bottom of the plate i can't make out with a magnifying glass.


Author:  sbhunterca [ Sun Sep 22, 2013 12:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Illinois Central Railroad / ICR question

This week, I received my copy of Don McQueen's "Canadian National Steam!", Vol. I.

Appendix B-B (page 164) covers the IRC's experiments with the Cleveland Uniflow Cylinder system- one 4-4-0 rebuilt in 1897 with the Cleveland system, one 4-6-0 and five 2-8-0's built new. Comparisons were made with sister 2-8-0's built as Vauclain Compounds with similar operating results but the Clevelands had quicker response and lower repair costs. Both systems were dropped in favour of superheating.

That's all I'll repeat from Don's work- this is an excellent book, and will be followed by a number of additional volumes describing specific groups of locomotives in great detail. Any student of the CNR or Canadian steam power should have these books in their library.

Steve Hunter

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