Presumably CV is running his AA&AA Railroad and Baking Co. on the other side and out-baroning the other barons while at it.
Today on "making shit more complicated than it needs to be"…
I've wondered why the articulated engine never really caught on in Canuckistan… now I see the answer.
Speaking of, the USA is apparently the only place where the Mallet style articulated really caught on. Yes, it was invented by a frenchman and quite a few were built for narrow-gauge railways in the early 20th century… but for the most part, the rest of the world appears to prefer the Garratt style when it comes to articulated steam. Per my readings, this is due to the tighter size restrictions found outside the US.
That said, two Garratt style steam engines have made their way stateside. A ranch owner in Texas spent part of his life in South Africa, and decided to bring some of the narrow gauge trains home with him. Don't bother trying to go see them though, per forum posts he is EXTREMELY private and WILL run people off his property with a shotgun.
For the record, 1218 had been living in the same park, but was moved out six months prior to the flood in May of 1985 to begin its return to operation by NS at their Irondale, AL shops. I guess even with the 1218 gone, the VMT felt that 1604 was surplus; perhaps it freed up some cash in the recovery from the flood and the eventual move to the current museum site in the old N&W freight house.
Here's a picture of 1218 and two sister engines during their stint as stationary boilers for Union Carbide.
While N&W 611 was returned to the VMT weeks after the end of the steam program in 1994, 1218 had been in the middle of an overhaul. The engine was towed to Roanoke, where it sat in the East End shops for many years (supposedly the boxcars containing parts for the 1218 were in Irondale for years after that, their current disposition I think is unknown) and it wasn't until after O Winston Links death that NS cleaned up the A class and put it back on display at VMT. Supposedly Link had wanted the engine displayed on a turntable outside the museum of his photography in the old N&W passenger station, but everyone told him this was ridiculous and impractical, which he wasn't happy about.
Also, a little birdie of a railfan told me that apparently someone was willing to put up the money to restore 1218 to operation alongside the 611 (an extremely difficult feat, given that the boiler of 1218 is basically empty right now, rather than full of tubes and such) but the project never got off the ground. I'm guessing because there's no place to restore the enormous thing. The turntable at Spencer can barely fit 611, definitely wouldn't fit 1218. Also, seeing the difficulty 611 and indeed all mainline steam engines are currently facing (another thread for another day)… well, it probably isn't the best time to try restoring an articulated.
> I'm perplexed that OP uses the term "Yellowstone" and "articulated" interchangeably; to my knowledge, the only articulated engines that were actually called Yellowstones were the DM&IR fleet.
A list I have describes a Yellowstone as an (1'D)D'2 artic – I think that’s 2-8-8-4 in old money.
That look is so unique and amazing, I really approve of those stylistic choices.
Have we heard for sure about CV, or is his extended absence taken as proof?
Unfortunately, Corny has been gone for so long, and he was significantly ill the last time he was active, that I believe he has caught the train to the beyond.
Here's some more shots of the EM1.
There are so few pictures out there of the Southern articulateds. I bought a pair of books on Southern steam motive power, and I was shocked to learn that they had a sizeable fleet of mallet steamers. Per Classic Trains magazine, some eluded the scrappers torch until nearly the 1960s, even though the Southern was one of the first major railroads to completely switch to diesel power.
That's fascinating! I had no idea some survived that late - what a treasure it would have been if one had been preserved.
For pics of Southern articulated, the best resource I have found is the Southern railfan site, which is invaluable. Love the compact look of these mallets.
The thing that gets me is that the Southern didn't use up every available inch of space like… just about every other railroad did. I mean, that 2-8-8-2 there isn't tiny, but compare it to a Y6b, for instance.
Also, the tenders are still small. With all the efficiency the Southern boasted, one would think that going longer between tender-filling stops would be desirable.
I would imagine that tender size has more to do with the infrastructure that was available on the lines they were designed to run. Perhaps there was sufficient coaling and water facilities for where they were used?
Regardless I find them aesthetically pleasing; wish I could find a few color shots of them.