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 Post subject: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 1:48 am 

Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 2:54 am
Posts: 915
Location: Califoothills / Midwest Prairies / PNW
On November 30, 2015 there was a successful boiler test and then several hours of operations of the 18" gauge 0-4-4T #1 of the Anacortes Railway. This locomotive was heavily rebuilt by the late Tommy Thompson from a Porter air motor used at Homestake Mine, and it operated in downtown Anacortes, Washington. Only a short section of track remains serviceable, much of it is lost to developments and street improvements in the town. While the goal of restoring some form of train service with this engine remains some time away, it was a good sign of progress.

Video can be seen here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Io3N3oE2Muk


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 2:30 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 12:24 pm
Posts: 147
Location: Columbus, GA
Nice!

Thanks for posting, Olin!

Best Regards,
Glenn

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Best Regards,

Glenn Christensen


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:53 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5889
Beautiful little engine Olin! And the fireman looks pretty good too! Thanks for the posting. Narrow gauge LIVES!


Les


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 3:09 pm 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
Posts: 2410
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Google shows quite a lot of track still in place, across the road. Do you not have permission to use that track?

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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 4:24 pm 

Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 11:59 pm
Posts: 7
The first road crossing, at the meeting point of Market St. and R Ave. could easily be made passable, but then the tracks that crossed Q Ave. have been completely removed in the last 10 years.

We were going to try to adventure across the R Ave. crossing, but we didn't quite have enough time to do that. The track that does remain is in good shape and we're looking forward to a time when there's enough track down to really stretch the legs on the engine.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:54 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 1078
Nice to see #1 running again. Here is her history:

Porter 4322 0-4-0 5X8 3½ tons 04-09 18” gauge
Homestake Mining Co. #22 Lead, SD
Tommy Thompson (Anacortes RY) Anacortes, WA (1965)
(converted to 4½ ton steam 0-4-4T)
Georgetown Steam Plant Museum Seattle, WA
Anacortes Museum Anacortes, WA 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:33 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2019 12:40 pm
Posts: 15
Location: King County, Washington State
website down

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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:53 am 

Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 2:54 am
Posts: 915
Location: Califoothills / Midwest Prairies / PNW
While I have not seen a formal announcement, I have spoken with four principles of the group that formed in 2015 to revive this small railway in downtown Anacortes. For reasons not completely clear to me, they have disbanded and stopped this effort. The City of Anacortes, which owns the locomotive and three train cars, as well as track, will be preparing plans for a permanent display of the train. I was told the group's 501(c)3 charter, which originally was affiliated with the Anacortes Antique Machinery Show, will be re-purposed for a different community project.

I think some of the factors that resulted in this failed effort include challenges in installing a railway facility in an area with many competing interests for land use, not owning the facility, insurance requirements set by the City, and projected cash flow for the group. I personally think that the example set by Tommy Thompson for 20 years of operating this small railway still generates much local interest in some sort of 18" gauge railway installation. For the past five weeks, I have been investigating alternative business plans for a line that would likely be located outside of Anacortes. If anyone is interested, please PM me and I will provide a brief status of this research, however with nothing secured, there is not much to announce on this forum.

Thank you,
Olin Anderson


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:16 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5889
Olin -

Would be a shame to see 0-4-4RT # 1 put on display if there was the possibility of her running again. The 18" track gauge should be of help in finding a place to operate. Good luck with your effort...and keep us posted.


Les


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:24 pm 

Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 2:54 am
Posts: 915
Location: Califoothills / Midwest Prairies / PNW
Les,
In my opinion, a proper display of this engine and train would be better than nothing, which is what it has had for the past 6 or 7 years. I support the City's action.

A basis for my idea of a relocated railway operation is this: If the project I envision is fully successful in demonstrating a healthy 18" gauge operation (using other equipment, having a volunteer base, and a functional budget), then perhaps the City would consider allowing the new organization to adopt the historic, displayed train equipment. I would not assume anything in regards to this actually happening, though.

Olin


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:57 pm 

Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 7:57 am
Posts: 2420
Location: Faulkland, Delaware
I wish I could have met Tommy Thompson. Is there any available interviews with Tommy online?

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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 5:39 pm 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Google street view shows much of the track still in place, and one end of the track is the dryberthed sternwheel steamer W.T. Preston. It is too bad that something, even if limited to just a few weekends and special events a year, could not be arranged.

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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:03 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:50 pm
Posts: 506
Tom,

If I recall correctly, the original Grand Scales videotape from 20 or more years ago had a segment on Tommy Thompson and his operation. The exact name of it escapes me but I bet it might be on YouTube. It included the Swanton Pacific RR 19" gauge operation, Sonoma Traintown, the WF&P, among others as I recall.

Rob Gardner


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:50 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2689
Development has ruined any real chance of the line returning where it is now, except as a really short demonstration railway.

Tommy always had dreams of extending it. Originally, he wanted to serve the small downtown ferry terminal. (Not the big one outside of town, the train's limited capacity wouldn't have been able to put a dent in that one)

Later plans were for a line out to the Fidalgo Bay camprgound and Marina. He even went so far as to build a short section of narrow gauge on the old line, just to show it was possible.

He passed before that could become anything more than an idea, and the rails and ties were removed and a trail was installed. The trail is named the Tommy Thompson trail in his honor.

The line along Fidalgo Bay is the only place that would even seem remotely possible, but even then, you'd have to deal with the trail and I suspect you'd get strong opposition. These days, property in Anacortes is simply too expensive and there's not much room left anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:17 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
Posts: 2410
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Well, it does not seem that short to me, for a kiddie ride. Here are Google maps at the same scale. One is Anacortes, and the other I have drawn Strasburg's Cagney line. They both seem to be about 300 meters.

You already have a steam themed museum with the W.T. Preston. It seems a perfect match, and better than a static display. Maybe extend the line towards the sewage treatment plant. How can they complain?


Attachments:
File comment: Strasburg Cagney with hand traced route
Strasburg RR.jpg
Strasburg RR.jpg [ 50.85 KiB | Viewed 5363 times ]
File comment: Anacortes Google Map showing remaining trackage
Anacortes RR.jpg
Anacortes RR.jpg [ 41.86 KiB | Viewed 5363 times ]

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