The Kentucky Railway Museum was chartered in 1954 by railroad enthusiasts in Louisville, KY, who had formed a chapter of the National Railway Historical Society in 1948. In the early 1950s, the Chapter asked the Louisville & Nashville Railroad to donate a steam locomotive that would form the nucleus of a new railway museum. Following donation of LN
K-1 4-6-2 #152, believed to be the last operating L&N steam locomotive, the museum leased six acres of land on River Road and opened to the public on Memorial Day, 1958.
But, as the name suggested, River Road was prone to flooding and, with a growing collection, the museum moved to a site near Ormsby Village, KY, in 1977. With expiry of that lease due in 1993 and no renewal forthcoming, the museum then had to search for another location.
On 4th July 1990, the current site opened in New Haven, KY. The museum also soon took over the last remaining
seventeen miles of the L&N's old Lebanon line from just east
of Boston to New Hope, KY, then owned by CSX Transportation, and train excursions hauled by #152 started operating in May 1991.
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Above, a new 5,000 square foot replica of the original brick L&N New Haven depot opened in
the summer of 1995. Inside, displays include a dining car exhibit, handcar, track inspection car, steam locomotive whistles, a model railroad layout and a ticket office. The museum is open 10.00-4.00 every day during summer. In winter, it is open 10.00-4.00 Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
Unfortunately, when I visited #152 sat cold in the engine house and I was unable to photograph the locomotive.
Above, ATSF #2546 waits to haul the morning excursion beside Chesapeake & Ohio K-4 #2716.
#2716 is one of twenty-six 2-8-4 Berkshire type locomotives built by Alco in 1944 (#2714-#2739), although they were known as "Kanawhas" on that railroad, named after the river that cut through its operating heartland in West Virginia. The first fourteen K-4s (#2700-#2713), also built by Alco were delivered in 1943. You can see one of these, #2705, on the B&O Museum Yard & Car Shop page of this website and #2707 on the Illinois Railway Museum Yard page.
K-4s operated over most of the C&O system. They performed so well, handling heavy drag freight, as well as fast passenger services, that the C&O subsequently ordered twenty more from Lima, ten in 1945 (#2740-#2749) and ten in 1947 (#2750-#2759), and a further thirty from Alco in 1947 (#2760-#2789). You can see the first locomotive in this final order on the CO Kanawha #2760 page of this website.
The design was based
on the Nickel Plate and Pere Marquette Lima-
built 2-8-4s, but featured improvements such as cast steel frames with integral cylinders.
With a 90.3 sq ft grate area, 462 sq ft firebox and total heating surface of 6,705 sq ft (including 1,932 sq ft superheating), the K-4 operated at 245 psi delivering 69,368 lbs tractive effort.
Twelve K-5s survive. #2705 is on the B&O Museum Yard & Car Shop page of this website, #2707 on the Illinois Railway Museum Yard, #2727 on the St Louis Museum of Transportation Train Sheds, #2789 on the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum and #2736 on the National Railroad Museum page. #2700, #2732, #2755, #2756, #2760 and #2776 each have their own page.
#2152 was sold to the Republic Steel Corp., in Birmingham, AL, in 1951 and renumbered #285. In 1965, it was donated to the museum.
Below, the backhead is in surprisingly good condition considering its years of exposure to the elements. The firebox even retains some original fire bricks.
This 0-8-0 was built for the L&N by Alco as #2152 in 1925. It is typical of the larger switching locomotives that began to supersede 0-6-0s after WWI. The design was based on the USRA 0-8-0, one hundred and seventy-five of which were built, including six for the L&N (#2118-#2123).
Left, note the overfire jets, not a usual feature of the USRA design. #285 weighs 214,000 lbs and has 51" drivers and
25" x 30" cylinders. With a 47 sq ft grate and total heating surface of 2,775 sq ft, it operated at a boiler pressure of 175 psi delivering 51,042 lbs tractive effort.
Hauling into view above, #2546 is actually a road switcher converted from an EMD F7 A unit by the AT&SF ("CF7" stands for "converted F7").
Two hundred and thirty-three conversions were completed by the AT&SF at its Cleburne, TX, workshops from 1970 to 1978. They were the result of a projected need for more four-axle diesel hood units to meet growing demands on branch and secondary main lines. New units then cost c.$150,000 each, so the Santa Fe elected to modify its existing F units to serve the demand, which they hoped would cost just $60,000 each.
As cab units were structurally supported by their carbodies, a new underframe had to be constructed for the rebuild. A new carbody with walkways was manufactured and installed, and a number of other improvements were made, including remanufactured prime movers, trucks and traction motors, refurbished electrical systems and enhanced brakes.
EMD F3, F7 and F9 models were all modified under the programme, taking approximately forty-five days to complete per unit. The average cost was $40,000, well below the original target estimate.
Above, #2546 idles in the yard alongside KRM #4010 and #4044.
#2546 was delivered as #229L in 1949, one of two hundred and fifteen F7 units built by EMD for the AT&SF between 1949 and 1953. It was designated for freight service and was converted to a CF7 in November 1973. It is 48' 8½" long and weighs 249,000 lbs. With an EMD 16-567C prime mover powering a D14 generator to drive four GM D27C traction motors, one on each axle, it has a top speed of 72 mph.
The AT&SF's CF7 rebuilding programme came to a natural end when there were no more F units left on its roster to convert, although twenty-four didn't go through conversion because they had been subjects of wrecks and were considered unsuitable. The rebuilt units worked across the Santa Fe system, mainly switching and hauling local freight, although they also worked in multiple unit consists hauling mainline drags, sometimes with old F B units.
The AT&SF began disposing of its CF7s in 1984. Most were sold for as little as $20,000, mainly to shortline and regional railroads. By 1987, it had divested itself of all its CF7s.
Road Switcher ("RS"), 4th military type ("4"), Army Transportation Corps ("TC") #4010 was one of sixty-six of this type built for the US Army between 1953 and 1955 (#1247-#1273 & #4001-#4039).
The 1200 series were built for domestic use, while the 4000s were for foreign service and had adjustable trucks, axles and wheels convertible as standard, 60", 63" and 66" gauge. Although very few saw service overseas, according to the museum, #4010 was deployed in Europe.
You can see one of the 1200 series, #1256, on the Mid-Continent Railway Museum page of this website.
Are these Whitcomb, Baldwin or Davenport units?
The Invitation to Bid on 29th December 1951 specified that the Davenport DE-48 USAX 4000 was to be the basis for the design, but Baldwin had trouble getting plans from Davenport and only started the re-design process in June 1952. Although the units carried Whitcomb serial numbers, by then, Whitcomb's Rochelle shops had closed. The bid also came from Baldwin's Eddystone plant, where the units were built. So, technically, they are a Baldwin modification of a Davenport design and not a Whitcomb.
#4044 was built in 1954. It is one of eight
RS-4-Tcs built for the US Air Force between 1953 and 1954 (#1274-#1276 & #4040-#4044).
The RS-4-TC is equipped with a Caterpillar D397 V12 400 hp prime mover although, like #4044, many were later re-powered with Caterpillar
D-3508 500 hp engines and EMD control stands. Weighing 60,000 lbs and 39' 2" long, it has a Westinghouse WH1604C generator and four Westinghouse 4WH974A traction motors, one on each axle of the General Steel Castings trucks, each with a 6' 11" wheelbase.
#32 is one of four BL2 switchers built by EMD for the Chicago, Indianapolis & Louisville, also known as the Monon, in 1948 (#30-#33). The CI&L bought two more that year (#34 & #35) and three more in 1949 (#36-#38).
Fifty-eight BL2s were built from 1948 to 1949 after a single BL1 Demonstrator, #499 later sold to the Chicago & Eastern Illinois and renumbered #1602. The main difference was that the BL1 had an air-actuated throttle and could not multiple-unit, while the BL2, had a standard electrically-actuated throttle.
The BL2 is 54' long and weighs 230,000 lbs. Its 1,500 hp 567B prime mover powered a GM D12 generator to drive four D27B traction motors. It delivered 40,000 lbs continuous tractive effort at 9.3 mph with a top speed of 65 mph.
The BL stood for "branch line", meaning the units were intended to operate on lines with light traffic or limits on axle loadings. Something of a hybrid, the BL2 was used to haul freight and, occasionally, passenger trains as well as switching.
Since the engine didn't occupy the entire width of the carbody, the hood was cut away and
chamfered to give the crew a slightly better line of sight but, unfortunately, this design also
eliminated side walkways, which meant brakemen and switchmen could not easily move from one point on the locomotive to another while
switching. The BL2's carbody design also made it difficult to get at mechanical components inside the locomotive, which made it unpopular with maintenance crews and meant the model did not sell well. You can see other BL2s on the National Railroad Museum page of this website and the B&O Museum Yard and Car Shop page.
Another 44 ton GE switcher, #77 was originally built for the US Navy in 1953. It is 28' 4" long and weighs 90,000 lbs. With two Caterpillar D 1700 diesel engines driving four GE 752AF traction motors, one on each axle, it delivered 12,400 lbs continuous tractive effort at 12 mph.
GE built a range of switchers between 1938 and 1974 from 20 ton
box cab models through to 128 tonners. All were built at the company's Erie, PA, works and they proved amongst the
most versatile and durable produced. Many still operate on
shortlines and in heritage museums.
In the 1940s, dieselisation was just beginning in the US, and railroad unions sought to protect firemen's jobs that were increasingly threatened as diesels did not require "firing". One agreement made with employers was that diesels weighing 90,000 lbs or more must roster a fireman as well as an engineer. The 44-ton locomotive neatly got around this requirement.
Above, another GE 44 tonner of unknown provenance. "Neo 1025" has been spray painted on one side of the cab.
Three hundred and eighty-five of these 44 ton units were built between 1940 and 1956, mainly for US and Canadian railroads, but thirty-seven were also sold abroad to railroads in South America, Saudi Arabia, India and even Australia.
Fairbanks Morse had developed a diesel engine that was used on much of the US Navy's WWII submarine fleet. With two pistons in each cylinder, it generated nearly twice as much power from the same number of cylinders as other engines.
With increasing post-war dieselisation, the company introduced what was then the most powerful engine available in a diesel, but the locomotives were relatively difficult to maintain and only three hundred and thirty-four
H-12-44s were built between 1950 and 1961.
Built in 1953 by Fairbanks Morse, #1846 is one of twenty H-12-44 units delivered to the US
Army in 1953. It is a very late example of a unit with a rear roof visor. This design feature, installed on H-12-44s as well as on earlier
H-10-44 models, was removed as a cost saving exercise from about 1952.
Weighing 246,000 lbs and 49' 2" long, with an FM 38D8 prime mover powering a Westinghouse WE481G generator to drive four Westinghouse WE362B traction motors, it developed 34,000 lbs continuous tractive effort at 8.9 mph.
The US Army took delivery of #7374 in 1941 along with #7375. The Army eventually bought eleven of these Alco built S-1 units between 1941 and 1942 (#7132-#7136, #7141, #7142, #7374, #7375, #7459 & #7460).
Five hundred and forty of these switchers were produced by Alco between 1940 and 1950 for a wide range of US railroads as well as export models for Brazil and the United Kingdom. The
S-1 is virtually identical to the Alco S-3 switcher, two hundred and ninety-two of which were produced from 1950 to 1953.
The only difference is that the S-1 had Alco Blunt trucks and the S-3 had standard AAR type A switcher trucks.
Both the S-1 and S-3 weigh 210,000 lbs and are 44' 5" long. With a 600 hp (660 hp on the S-3) Model 539 6L prime mover, GE GT552A generator and six GE 731 traction motors, they deliver 46,000 lbs continuous tractive effort at 5 mph. Top speed was 60 mph.
The Industrial Brownhoist Corporation in Bay City, MI, built this 75 ton steam operated wrecking crane in 1952 for the US Army as #C1503. It was subsequently sold to the Monon Railroad and renumbered #80001, then to the Louisville & Nashville as #40010. Awaiting scrapping at the Louisville Scrap Co., it was bought by the museum in 1977.
The Industrial Brownhoist Corporation began as Industrial Works in 1873, primarily repairing equipment and supplying saws, engines and boilers to local sawmills and shipbuilders.
The firm built its first crane for the Chicago & Western Illinois Railroad in 1883 and went on to become a major producer of cranes for the US market, which was expanding rapidly during this time.
By 1923, Industrial Works had produced and sold three thousand, seven hundred and seventy-six cranes, three thousand, two hundred and sixty-one of these to US customers. In 1931, it combined with the Brown Hoisting Company of Cleveland, OH, (established in 1880) to form the Industrial Brownhoist Company.
After over one hundred years of production marked by a number of changes of ownership, however, the plant finally shut in 1983.
A good number of Industrial Brownhoist cranes have been preserved. You can see other surviving examples on the Nevada Northern Railroad Museum page of this website, the Orange Empire Railway Museum page, Ogden Union Station, the National Railroad Museum, the Gold Coast Railroad Museum, the Pennsylvania Railroad Museum Yard, Monticello Railway Museum and Virginia Museum of Transportation pages.
Above, the Kentucky "40 et 8" on display.
In 1947, the US began a relief effort to aid war-torn France and Italy. States donated box cars of goods, food and clothes to an "American Friendship Train". The French responded with a forty-nine car "Merci Train" (Thank You Train) two years later, one for each state at the time, and one to be shared between the District of Columbia, Alaska and Hawaii. The cars contained artwork, antiques and books, and were called "40 et 8" (40 and 8) because the French military rated them to carry forty soldiers or eight horses.