SLSF/Eagle-Picher Decapod #1615 is on display in Altus, OK

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SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus, OK

SLSF #1615 was built at Alco's Richmond, VA, works in 1917 as a 5' gauge Decapod type (2-10-0) locomotive, one of sixty-five intended for the Russian Government. However, that year the Tsarist government was overthrown and the new government refused delivery. The "orphaned" engine was then allocated to the United States Railroad Adminstration as #1015 and sold to the Saint Louis-San Francisco Railroad where it was rebuilt as a standard gauge locomotive and renumbered #1615.

The locomotive was sold to Eagle-Picher Industries in 1951 and spent a short time hauling zinc and lead ore in the mines of Eastern Oklahoma until dieselisation forced its retirement in 1954. Eagle-Pitcher donated SLSF 1615 to the City of Altus in 1967 and the Frisco agreed to move it free of charge. After many repairs to guarantee its road readiness, it traveled over three hundred miles across Oklahoma for permanent display in Altus.

It went on display in South City Park adjacent to an indoor sports facility but has since been moved into the grounds of the Altus Parks and Recreation Complex on E Katy Drive.

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SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus

When we visited we were told the move had been made because of the potential asbestos hazard. The locomotive is not in too poor a condition, although some of its appliances are missing. It has recently been repainted but the liberal use of bright yellow paint is inappropriate.

You can see three of the other four surviving "orphaned" Russian Decapods on the Museum of the American Railroad page of this website, the St Louis Museum of Transportation Yard page and the Belton, Grandview and Kansas City Railroad page.

SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus
SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus
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SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus
SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus
SLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, AltusSLSF/Eagle-Picher #1615, Altus
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