This Ten Wheeler (4-6-0) was built by Alco for the New Orleans Great Northern in 1914. The NOGN was constructed to service the Great Southern Lumber Company. Built by NOGN's owners, the Great Southern's sawmill was built in Bogalusa, LA, to mill timber stands in south west Mississippi and Louisiana.
Although intended to haul timber, the New Orleans Great Northern was designed from the start as a permanent, standard gauge line. After purchasing the East Louisiana Railroad, an existing local lumber concern, it began operations in 1906 between Slidell, LA, and Bogalusa. A connection to Jackson, MS, was completed in 1909 and the railroad gradually expanded to haul agricultural and dairy products.
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In 1926, NOGN reached a traffic agreement with the Gulf, Mobile & Northern and CB&Q but, within two years, faced declining income. Seeing its line as a valuable link in its North-South service, the GM&N negotiated control in 1929. By 1933, it concluded a 99-year lease that ended NOGN's existence. NOGN #72 then became GMN #72 and GMO #72 when the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio was formed in 1940.
Sold to the Gaylord Container Company in Bogalusa, LA, in 1946, #72 operated on the company's own rail line as well as on GM&O trackage for the company. It was then sold to Washington & Western in 1960 and hauled gravel in the Washington and St. Tammany Parish, LA, areas. In 1967, it moved to Clifton, LA, although it is not clear whether it was still in service hauling gravel.
In 1981, #72 was donated to the Town of Franklinton and went on display at the Washington Parish Fairgrounds. After many years of deterioration, #72 had a $50,000 makeover in 2008, including construction of a new shed and repainting as GMN #72. For some reason at that time, the headlight was moved to the top of the smokebox leaving the original bracket on the smokebox door.
Photos on the right from the upper left: view through the fireman's window, the backhead, front of the smokebox, the left side drivers, inside the firebox, coal pusher in the tender, the sign marking restoration of #72 in 2008, side mounted air pumps, view through the engineer's window.
Built with slide valves, #72 was fitted with 11" piston valves and
a higher pressure 210 psi boiler at NOGN's shops in Bogalusa,
LA, in 1928. The engine has a
25' 1" engine wheelbase and
14' 7" driver wheelbase and weighs 187,900 lbs, 143,800 lbs on its 61" drivers. With 21" x 26" cylinders, a 46.3 sq ft grate and total heating surface of 2,419 sq ft including 427 sq ft superheating, #72 delivered 33,552 lbs tractive effort. The tender weighs 150,800 lbs light with a 12 ton coal and 7,200 gallon water capacity.