You can see it coming from miles away. You are waiting. You see the smoke going high into the sky. It is coming closer and closer and closer. You hear the whistle blow, and it blows again and again and again. Then, it is here. You see the steam locomotive speeding towards you. In a flash, it passes you. The steam blows all over you. The train rolls by, and then you see the caboose. The steam is all above you. The effects are staying with you, but it is a great feeling to have.
There is some about the steam locomotive that catches everyone’s attention. Unlike the diesel locomotives of today, there is a uniqueness to the steam locomotive. Even those who are not fans of the railroad are fascinated by the steam locomotive. Every steam locomotive has a special uniqueness to them. From the smokestack to the boiler to the wheel alignment to engineer’s cab to the tender, the steam locomotive has a special place in many hearts.
The steam locomotives are magnificent. The steam locomotives are amazing. The steam locomotives are a sight to see. Steam locomotives… are high costly maintenance.
The steam locomotive could pull cars for only a hundred miles. Why? Because many of the steam locomotives were powered by coal, the silt from the coal filled the boilers. Every hundred miles, the steam locomotive had to be taken out of service to a roundhouse or shop to be cleaned. The process took at least a day or more as each tube in the boiler had to be individually cleaned. One hundred miles was a great distance for the nineteenth century and for the first half of the twentieth century, but it is just a short drive today. The diesel locomotives can go much farther before maintenance is required which is why the steam locomotive was replaced. With trains able to go farther without stopping, that meant fewer stops, and products got to their destinations much quicker.
For now, the steam locomotive is mainly seen of excursion trains. Yes, you can still see the steam. The newly built steam locomotives now use water instead of coal requiring less maintenance. Regardless, you just cannot wait to see that steam puffing out those clouds of smoke. There is nothing like seeing a steam locomotive rolling down the line.
The first photo is of the Number 17 William Simpson York locomotive of the Northern Central Railway in New Freedom, Pennsylvania
The second locomotive is the Number 3 of the Hocking Valley Scenic Railway in Nelsonville, Ohio
The third locomotive is the Number 5300 President Washington of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad on display at the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Museum in Baltimore, Maryland
The fourth locomotive is Number 2732 of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway on display at the Science Museum of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia
The fifth locomotive is Number 604 of the Duluth, Massabe and Iron Range Railroad on display at the Greenville Railroad Park in Greenville, Pennsylvania
The sixth locomotive is Number 999 The Empire State Express of the New York Central System on display at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, Illinois
The seventh locomotive is Number 611 of the Norfolk and Western Railway at a photo shoot on the Strasburg Railroad in Gap, Pennsylvania
The eighth locomotive is Number 3001 of the New York Central System on display at the New York Central Railroad Museum in Elkhart, Indiana
The ninth locomotive is Number 475 at the Strasburg Railroad in Ronks, Pennsylvania
The tenth locomotive is Number 1218 of the Norfolk and Western Railway on display at the Virginia Museum of Transportation in Roanoke, Virginia
The eleventh locomotive is Number 385 on display at the Whippany Railway Museum in Whippany, New Jersey
The last locomotive is Number 614 The Greenbrier Presidential Express of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway on display at the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Museum in Clifton Forge, Virginia