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 Post subject: Anthracite mines in Virginia *PIC*
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 2:34 pm 

This is my first attempt with a picture so bare with me. I found it while cruising around the Virginia Tech image data base. I was looking for pictures of the railroad in Blacksburg and came across pictures of the Merrimac mine. A vist to the site shows what actually does appear to be anthracite coal. Any one know any more about this?
Local lore has it that the mine provided the coal for the CSA virginia, but I haven't yet found any thing to prove that either....

http://spec.lib.vt.edu/imagebase/temple/full/ht380.jpg
Image
btrue@vt.edu


  
 
 Post subject: A Rare Bird?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 3:01 pm 

> This is my first attempt with a picture so
> bare with me. I found it while cruising
> around the Virginia Tech image data base. I
> was looking for pictures of the railroad in
> Blacksburg and came across pictures of the
> Merrimac mine. A vist to the site shows what
> actually does appear to be anthracite coal.
> Any one know any more about this?
> Local lore has it that the mine provided the
> coal for the CSA virginia, but I haven't yet
> found any thing to prove that either....

Ben:

WOW! Not only a camelback, but a 2-6-2 Prairie type camelback at that! And with a slope back tender no less! Thanks for posting it Ben! I don't ever recall seeing a photo of a 2-6-2 camelback before. Is this the only one ever built? If not, who else had them?

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

midlandblb@cs.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: A Rare Bird?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 3:18 pm 

What a neat locomotive! Thanks for sharing.

Tom


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Anthracite mines in Virginia
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 4:26 pm 

Hey Ben , Sounds like an idea for an article for the WVRRPS Newsletter. You up for it?

See ya - Mike

> This is my first attempt with a picture so
> bare with me. I found it while cruising
> around the Virginia Tech image data base. I
> was looking for pictures of the railroad in
> Blacksburg and came across pictures of the
> Merrimac mine. A vist to the site shows what
> actually does appear to be anthracite coal.
> Any one know any more about this?
> Local lore has it that the mine provided the
> coal for the CSA virginia, but I haven't yet
> found any thing to prove that either....


Yenko117@yahoo.com


  
 
 Post subject: Actually..... *PIC*
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 5:30 pm 

......I had thought about writing something on the Blacksburg line. If nothing else just to have some info for my own thoughts. However over my past 3 years here at Tech, I have been mildly poking around on the subject and haven't found much. Keep in mind I am new at this research stuff, and I've been poking with a stick not digging with a shovel. However my trip down to the mine site yesterday, has turned up some new places to look. And since they are starting to turn it in to a park, there seems to be some more interest that I might be able to capitalize on.

now a technical question, I've been told some 2-6-2's were designed with a trailing truck that actually was a pony truck so that the engine could run in either direction. is there any way to tell from the picture if that's the case for this locomotive? Also any guesses at the builder?


Image
btrue@vt.edu


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Actually.....
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 7:31 pm 

> ......I had thought about writing something
> on the Blacksburg line. If nothing else just
> to have some info for my own thoughts.
> However over my past 3 years here at Tech, I
> have been mildly poking around on the
> subject and haven't found much. Keep in mind
> I am new at this research stuff, and I've
> been poking with a stick not digging with a
> shovel. However my trip down to the mine
> site yesterday, has turned up some new
> places to look. And since they are starting
> to turn it in to a park, there seems to be
> some more interest that I might be able to
> capitalize on.

> now a technical question, I've been told
> some 2-6-2's were designed with a trailing
> truck that actually was a pony truck so that
> the engine could run in either direction. is
> there any way to tell from the picture if
> that's the case for this locomotive? Also
> any guesses at the builder?

Ben:

From the shape of the dome of #2 and the rectangular builder's plate, my money would be on ALCO. And quite possibly at their Richmond works. Any chance someone could enlarge the photo to read the info on the plate?

BTW, is this second photo also of the same operation? The engine shown (number 1, a 4-4-0) is probably a second hand locomotive.

Les

midlandblb@cs.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Actually..... *PIC*
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 8:05 pm 

As far as the second picture being part of the same operation, I think it's safe to assume it is. Both pictures were catologed together, the lettering seems simalar, and the building in the back ground is similar to other buildings in some of the other pictures of the operation. however I wouldn't stake my life on it seeing how there are some other miss labeled pictures in the archive.

The link below is the photo archive, if you want more pictures of the operation search for "merrimac" or "huckleberry" I don't sugest a search for train, railroad, locomotive, or any thing else so general because this is the N&W photo archive and you don't narrow it down much that way.

Picture below is of N&W blacksburg branch (The Huckleberry) crossing over the Virginian near Merrimac (the long tunnel is behind the cameraman).

Hum........when I win the multi-hundred million dollar lottery, after I write that check to TJ's endowment fund, I think it'd be neat finance a photo charter with 475, wonder if some part of Lancaster county looks close to Montgomery?
Hey I can dream can't I?

Ben



VT Image Database
Image
btrue@vt.edu


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Actually.....
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 8:10 pm 

> now a technical question, I've been told
> some 2-6-2's were designed with a trailing
> truck that actually was a pony truck so that
> the engine could run in either direction. is
> there any way to tell from the picture if
> that's the case for this locomotive? Also
> any guesses at the builder?

As is the case here. The boiler and firebox are adequately supported by the driving wheels, heck, this thing could be an 0-6-0 judging by the way it's balanced. The purpose of these pony and trailing trucks is simply to guide the engine into curves, and they have only enough weight transfered onto them to do that job.


dstorzek@elnet.com


  
 
 Post subject: Wooten fireboxes
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 10:32 pm 

I don't know if there is any real quantity of anthracitic coal in Viriginia or not; they only commercial mines of major commercial importance were in Pennsylvania and in Arkansas (of all places).

A Wooten firebox doesn't automatically indicate anthracite. Many RRs used wooten boilered engines to burn just about any kind of waste coal (culm) and some even burned lignite (or at least tried to. When you run into any kind of Camel back west or South of Pennsylvania, you can bet the CMO was trying to burn cheap waste coal. remember, the MKT, and the UP among others all had the odd camelback or two on the roster, and I pretty sure they weren't in the anthracite business.

As to the trailing truck, it looks to be sprung exact;y like they would have on a logging prairie; carry just enough weight to guide the old gal into a curve when running 'backerds'.


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Actually.....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:09 am 

The Virginia Anthracite Coal & Railway Co. started construction of a nine-mile line between Christiansburg and Blacksburg in 1902 with completion in 1904, connecting with the Norfolk & Western in Christiansburg. The Merrimac anthracite coal mine was located near the mid-point of the railroad. The line offered freight and passenger service though was not successful and ended up in receivership. It was taken over by the N&W in 1912 to become the Blacksburg branch.

The 2-6-2 Merrimac, No. 2, became N&W Class O-28 (O for odd) No. 91. It had a weight of 140,000 lbs. with a tractive effort rated at 23,794 lbs. It had a steam operating pressure of 180 lbs. with 50-inch drivers and cylinders were 18" x 24." The engine was built by Richmond in 1904 with construction No. 29718, according to Richard E. Prince in his book "Norfolk & Western Railway, Pocahontas Coal Carrier." It was off the books by January 1916.

hcastle@rcn.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Actually.....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 20, 2003 9:29 am 

Hey Ben, You sound like me, when it comes to the South River Lumber Co. I've hiked miles of grade and not really learned much, other than a track layout, and about bridge/fill construction. The mill site is up South River (duh) at Cornwall, but with the recent flooding, non-locals are not welcome, even though I only live 10 miles away.
Let me know if you find something interesting at the mine site. I've been thinking that the club could host some field-trips, which I'd rather do than just meet and arm-chair railroad.

Best of luck - Mike

> ......I had thought about writing something
> on the Blacksburg line. If nothing else just
> to have some info for my own thoughts.
> However over my past 3 years here at Tech, I
> have been mildly poking around on the
> subject and haven't found much. Keep in mind
> I am new at this research stuff, and I've
> been poking with a stick not digging with a
> shovel. However my trip down to the mine
> site yesterday, has turned up some new
> places to look. And since they are starting
> to turn it in to a park, there seems to be
> some more interest that I might be able to
> capitalize on.

> now a technical question, I've been told
> some 2-6-2's were designed with a trailing
> truck that actually was a pony truck so that
> the engine could run in either direction. is
> there any way to tell from the picture if
> that's the case for this locomotive? Also
> any guesses at the builder?


Yenko117@yahoo.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Anthracite mines in Virginia *PIC*
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 6:32 am 

Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:33 pm
Posts: 1
I grew up in merrimac


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 Post subject: Re: Anthracite mines in Virginia *PIC*
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:36 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 722
This may be it:

Alco Richmond #29718 06-04 2-6-2 18x24 50" drivers
VAC #2
N&W #91 02-12


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 Post subject: Re: Anthracite mines in Virginia *PIC*
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:24 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:47 pm
Posts: 76
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Just shows to go you anthracite coal is not unique to NE PA.

Don't forget the anthracite mine (and breaker) at Anthracite on the D&RGW narrow gauge Crested Butte Branch.

And in Korea there are anthracite mines in the Taebaek Mountains, near where the Winter Olympics are being held.

Phil Mulligan


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 Post subject: Re: Anthracite mines in Virginia *PIC*
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:58 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3371
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
Could this engine be the subject of a "new build?"

OK, just kidding around. . .

There were only two roads that had Camelback 2-6-2s--this one, and the Lehigh Valley.

The LV's engines were much larger and intended for passenger service. They were rebuilt as 4-6-2s.

http://www.steamlocomotive.com/locobase ... ailroad=lv

(Scroll down to see this series in original and rebuilt forms)

https://sites.google.com/site/camelback ... -0/e-other


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