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 Post subject: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:21 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:39 am
Posts: 46
A co-worker and I were recently discussing ways to describe the steam engine we work on (Southern Railway #154) to the general public so that they actually get an impression of the age of the engine. Currently it is easy to say that it is one of the oldest operating steam engines in the country (build date of 1890, country being USA), however we agreed that this sort of information has more of an impact if you can actually give a definite number (for instance, I believe it is actually the 9th oldest engine operating in the country).

Most people just assume that all steam engines are 100 years old, so adding a bit of context and information is something that I believe can be helpful.

So I have taken some time to try to compile a list of engines either operating or under restoration with build dates from before 1900. I'm reaching out here because I would love some input on the list (it is rather difficult to find a list that is both easy to access and examine of operating steam engines), and I imagine others might just find this information to be of interest.

The information I have so far is attached in a screenshot from an excel sheet.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:51 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:01 pm
Posts: 96
Mount Washington Cog Railway #6 is not operable but #2 built in 1875 is. Not likely there are any original parts on it though.

As far as I know, the Grove Farm 2-4-0T named Paulo, built in 1887 is still operational in Puhi, HI.

Roger


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:00 pm 
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Location: Pac NW, via North Florida
RookieFireman wrote:
Most people just assume that all steam engines are 100 years old, so adding a bit of context and information is something that I believe can be helpful.

Get one of the Chinese engines next to it to really blow the minds of the public. There'd be over a century between them...

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:08 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:39 am
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R. Hahn wrote:
Mount Washington Cog Railway #6 is not operable but #2 built in 1875 is. Not likely there are any original parts on it though.

As far as I know, the Grove Farm 2-4-0T named Paulo, built in 1887 is still operational in Puhi, HI.

Roger


Thank you! I gathered this info off of steamlocomotive.info (man, it would be nice to have a large spreadsheet covering all of this stuff...) so I was not entirely confident that it would be 100% accurate.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:49 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2016 6:12 pm
Posts: 101
I was a fireman on an 1898 Porter on the Fillmore & Western . It was an 0-4-0and was standard gauge.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:57 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:05 pm
Posts: 130
Don't forget D&RGW 169, although I don't see any updates to their site since 2017...

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:05 pm 

Joined: Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:00 pm
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At Carson City NV: - #8 1888 Cook

The F + W 0-4-0 "Sespe" is currently down for boiler work -

Man, as a railfan, I can't believe I have actually run both #8 and the Sespe!!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:06 pm 

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1888 Cook 8 was delivered and ran with my Pullman car DT&FW 45 or later C&S 57.....makes the two survivors very remarkable.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:26 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:51 pm
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Location: Southern California
Denver & Rio Grande 168 is undergoing repairs to make it serviceable otherwise it has not operated since the 1930s. This project of the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic has its own Facebook page.

D&RG 169 likewise has not operated since probably the 1930s; it went on display in 1941.

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:31 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
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Location: Tucson, Arizona
R. Hahn wrote:
Mount Washington Cog Railway #6 is not operable but #2 built in 1875 is. Not likely there are any original parts on it though.

As far as I know, the Grove Farm 2-4-0T named Paulo, built in 1887 is still operational in Puhi, HI.

Roger


I was in Hawaii a couple of years ago and believe that Paulo was still operating at that time, albeit on a very limited basis.

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:56 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:39 am
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Brian Norden wrote:
Denver & Rio Grande 168 is undergoing repairs to make it serviceable otherwise it has not operated since the 1930s. This project of the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic has its own Facebook page.

D&RG 169 likewise has not operated since probably the 1930s; it went on display in 1941.


Yes, I included the 168 as it is a credible restoration that seems likely to be completed. The same with RGS 20, although it has been taking place over a much longer period.

I was not aware of the 169 or a restoration plan affiliated with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 2:16 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:51 pm
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Location: Southern California
Yes, some of the rebuilding projects are more credible than others.

Some of us have been around long enough to have seen projects that stall out before or after work starts. Sometimes this is because of money or something happens to the people involved or organizational priorities change.

At times we are lucky to see a project that is restarted and completed -- but, it may be years later. Think of the "Skookum."

The old adage is "Don't count your chickens until they hatch."

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 7:51 am 

Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 5:06 pm
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Belle Point and Reserve Railroad (or possibly Lafourche, Raceland & Lockport Railroad)(Godchaux) No. 1, Baldwin, 1894, 3 ft. gauge, 0-4-4 Forney.

Now Disneyland Railroad No. 3, Fred Gurley, 2-4-4.

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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 9:29 am 

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:39 am
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Steve DeGaetano wrote:
Belle Point and Reserve Railroad (or possibly Lafourche, Raceland & Lockport Railroad)(Godchaux) No. 1, Baldwin, 1894, 3 ft. gauge, 0-4-4 Forney.

Now Disneyland Railroad No. 3, Fred Gurley, 2-4-4.


Thank you Steve.

I've attached an updated screenshot of this list below. I highlighted engines that are under restoration or are otherwise currently not running (the Pikes Peak engine being one of these as I understand that railroad to be currently shut down).

I can't say that it is a surprise, but it is still interesting how many more narrow gauge steam engines are on this list than standard gauge. I'm assuming this can be attributed to a much lower turnover in motive power for these lines.


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 Post subject: Re: Operating Steam Engines From Before 1900
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 10:05 am 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
RookieFireman wrote:
Thank you! I gathered this info off of steamlocomotive.info (man, it would be nice to have a large spreadsheet covering all of this stuff...) so I was not entirely confident that it would be 100% accurate.


This was exactly what I developed my Surviving World Steam Locomotive database for starting back in the 1990s; and worldwide on top of that. Unfortunately, the project grew too big, and time and interest by others grew too little to keep it going. Also, there is "operational" in that in theory you could fill it with water and fuel and go, and "operational" in that it has a current boiler certificate and is regularly operated.
Anyway, here were go:

The John Bull of 1831 in the Smithsonian was briefly operated at one point in the past; but I doubt they will ever do that again. So it shouldn't count.

B&O 25 4-4-0 "William Mason" of 1856 was restored and used in filming the movie "The Wild Wild West." I take it the boiler certification has expired?

V&T 18 4-4-0 "Dayton" of 1873 was also operational at one time, but I also assume it's boiler time has expired.

Is "Chloe", Walt Kimball's 3ft 0-4-2T built in 1883 still operational?

There is a Gypsy logging engine named "Falk" and built by Marshultz & Cantrell in 1884 and located at the Northern Counties Logging Museum that was operational during the 1990s; I don't know if it still is.

Is D&R 8 4-4-0 "Jupiter" also with Dayton in the NV State RR Museum operational; I assume it's boiler certificate has expired.

Someone already mentioned Sespe of 1891.

Is Argent Lumber 6 3ft 2-6-0 of 1891 at the Midwest Central RR still operational?

Another Gypsy logging engine named "Gypsy", built by Marshultz & Cantrell in 1892 and located at the Northern Counties Logging Museum; was operational in the 1990s.

Salmon Creek Railroad, owned by Jim Walsh, had Alaska Mining "Seward", a Porter built in 1892 operational in the 1990s; don't know it's current status.

Someone already mentioned Godchaux Sugar 3 at Disneyland.

S. D. Warren Co. 10188 2ft 0-4-0T, a Baldwin of 1895 was operational at Boothbay RY Village; I don't know it's current status.

"Lydia" a 3ft gauge 0-4-0 Porter built in 1897 from the Patoutville Sugar Plantation in Louisiana is operational at Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington.

Tanana Valley RR #1, a 3ft 0-4-0T Porter built in 1899 is/was operational at Pioneer Park, 2300 Airport Way, Fairbanks, AK.

Acadia Coal Co 42, a 2-6-0 Schenectady built in 1899, was operational at Salem and Hillsboro. RR; but I believe it is gone now and don't know it's current status.

There are some in Canada and Mexico that fall in your timeframe as well that are/were operational.

What is the oldest operational engine in regular service in the world? I think EIR 22 "Fairy Queen" a 5' 6" guage 2-2-2 built by Kitson, Thompson & Hewitson in 1855 at the New Delhi Railway Museum, New Delhi still holds that title, although I think L&M "Lion" of 1838 and KKStB 289.1 "Licaon", a 2-4-0ST built by StEG in 1852 are also still operational.

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