[N&W] Re: Last Steam Pass. Train

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Tue May 4 23:20:49 EDT 2004

I guess there are always "official" and "unofficial" last runs, but the
version I heard had the last regular-service run into Ohio in Fall of '58, I
believe. Will have to check the library 4 details, though ... This isn't
counting 611's 1959 swan song fan trips. 'Course, I wasn't born yet at
either date, so more elder sorts likely know 4 sure...
BTW, it's worth giving thanx this time of year (heck, everday for that
matter) to the Society members who created this listserv and keep it running
... it's a great and valuable way to trade information among our band.
Thanx, fellers.

Andre Jackson


1960 was too late of a date for any N&W steam passenger service.  Most of
it ended about June of 1958 when N&W leased RF&P and ACL E units to
dieselize all mainline passenger service.  Stuart Saunders approached this
with a vengeance, not willing to wait until the passenger GP-9's were
delivered about December 1, 1958.  However, some J's were pressed back into
service in the Fall of '58 when the leasing roads had to have their units
back for the upsurge in winter travel to Florida.  I was told at this
period of time that the lease cost of these units was $95 per day per unit.
With 22 passenger GP-9's and Southern units running through from Lynchburg
to Bristol (beginning Jan. 1, 1958)  N&W had little or no need to use steam
as a backup.  611 did power some excursions in 1959, and I think one of
those was on the Norfolk-Petersburg segment of a round trip from
Washington.  The final public fan trip was a Roanoke-Williamson round trip
on or about October 25, 1959, and 611 never turned a wheel under her own
power after that until 1982

Other folks can probably fill in the details, but by the beginning of 1960,
all N&W steam operations were confined to mine runs and yard work in the
vicinity of Williamson.  Of course, it all ended in April 1960.

Rick Morrison

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