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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE TOY DEPARTMENT, 1913

Night Train: 1943

Night Train: 1943

March 1943. "Barstow, California. A view of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe yard at night." Medium-format negative by Jack Delano. View full size.

 

Whale, not slope

That type of tender was known on the Santa Fe as a whaleback. Slopeback tenders were typically used with switch engines not road power - though, as always, there were exceptions. The biggest problems Santa Fe had with the 2-10-10-2s were with their jointed boilers.

That Odd Tender

That slopeback tender behind the first loco was uniquely used on the Santa Fe, and was not original equipment on that particular engine. It came originally attached to one of the 2-10-10-2 mallets used to push trains over Cajon Pass. Built early in the century, they were the world's largest locomotives in their day, yet proved so impractical and labor intensive that they were short lived, like most behemoth locomotives produced in that era. They were scrapped in the 1930's, and MAY have been (I don't have my Santa Fe books handy, so don't quote me on it) converted into two 2-10-0 types.

Engines died, but tenders, especially practical designs like the slopeback, lived on until the very end of steam.

Maybe We'll Steam Again

There's a group up at the University of Minnesota working with some 501c3 organization refitting a Baldwin to run on Biomass. They think they can get better emissions, efficiency, and power than diesel once they get it right. Even got themselves a website: http://www.csrail.org/.

It would be awfully neat if we could see these kinds of things again!

2-10-2 "Santa Fe Type"

The Santa Fe steam locomotive 1691 in the photo, is one of the earliest examples of a locomotive type which was named after the railroad. They descend from the 2-10-0 "Decapod" type, to which the Santa Fe added a one axle "trailing truck" under the cab in 1903, for better tracking on the steep and curvy Raton Pass grade in Colorado and New Mexico.
This begot one of the most popular wheel arrangements in America for heavy freight service.

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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