Last Steam Question

nw-mailing-list at nw-mailing-list at
Thu Mar 31 14:20:50 EST 2005

I have been searching for some time for this information, but have not 
come up with some definitive answers.

We all know that the last steam operation was out of Williamson in May, 
1960. I have dates for the last steam on the Scioto Division, but I 
have never seen dates for the last steam on the other Divisions, I've 
seen a few certain dates, like February 20, 1957 for the last steam 
passenger train on the Shenandoah Division north of Roanoke and 
December 31, 1957 for the passenger trains on the Bristol line.

Does anyone have dates and locomotive numbers for last revenue steam 
freight or passenger runs on Radford Division or Norfolk Division. In 
my research I have come up with some dates on the Radford Division, as 
best as I can tell, the 1202 went west with Train 85 consisting of 120 
cars on October 28, 1958, called for 11 am, pulled out of track 8 in 
Roanoke yard at 11:25 am. Steam before that was spotty at best, mostly 
GP9s, RS11s, the only previous steam dates I can find are October 13, 
1958, September 25, 1958, then a big gap back to March 20, 1958. 
Obviously steam was not to common by this late date, March seems to be 
the last month of frequent steam operation.  The Salem Shifter still 
used steam on up to January 23, 1959 with No. 230.

I am not looking for excursion train operations, like the 1240 in July 
1959, or 611 several times in August and finally in October.

On the Norfolk Division, I have been told that late April or May 1959 
was about the end, but have no specifics. Looking through the record 
books, steam was pretty thin by February, 1959 on that side as well.


Ken Miller

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