Streamliners At Spencer – Update

 Events, History and Preservation  Comments Off on Streamliners At Spencer – Update
Apr 032014

The N.C. Transportation Museum’s next major railroad event, “Streamliners at Spencer,” will be a four-day festival for lovers of classic streamlined locomotives of the 1930s through the 1950s. These engines will be gathered around the 37-stall Robert Julian Roundhouse turntable for daytime portraits, special operations, nighttime photos and more. Primarily a railroad photography event, “Streamliners at Spencer” is sure to be a rail fan’s delight.

Streamliners at Spencer

Popular in the 1940s and 1950s, more than 8,000 Electro-Motive Division streamliners, or “cab units,” were built with additional locomotives coming from Alco, Baldwin, and Fairbanks-Morse. These locomotives replaced steam power and pulled great passenger trains like the Crescent, the Champion, the Broadway Limited, among others.”They developed a loyal following thanks to their smooth shape, colorful paint schemes, and their look of speed,” said Trains magazine Editor Jim Wrinn, also a N.C. Transportation Museum Foundation vice president. “2014 is a great time to recognize them as the year marks the 75th anniversary of the first such successful diesel freight locomotive – the FT demonstrator of 1939.”

Despite the popularity of these locomotives in their day, Wrinn says, “Today they’re all gone except for a few dozen in museums, on Class I railroads as executive units, and on tourist railroads and short lines as curiosities.” The museum’s own Atlantic Coast Line E3, the Southern Railway E8, and Southern Railway FP7 will serve as the event’s host locomotives.

The museum’s goal will be to bring as many streamlined units together as possible for an event on par with 2012’s Norfolk Southern Heritage Locomotive Family Portrait. Attending locomotives are being confirmed and transported in cooperation with Norfolk Southern Corp. More details will be announced as the summer comes to an end with a great slate of visiting streamliners expected. Those wishing to stay up-to-date should either visit and check the event tab or follow the museum on Facebook at “N.C. Transportation Museum.”

As of March 17 the following locomotives are announced for this event:

  • Atlantic Coast Line E3 No. 501 (Purple & Silver)
  • Southern Railway FP7 No. 6133 (Green & Gold)
  • Southern Railway E8 No. 6900 (Southern Crescent Colors)
  • Norfolk Southern F9 No. 4270 (Tuxedo Paint Scheme)
  • Norfolk Southern F9 No. 4271 (Tuxedo Paint Scheme)
  • Pennsylvania Railroad E8 No. 5711 (Tuscan Red)
  • Pennsylvania Railroad E8 No. 5809 (Tuscan Red)
  • Delaware, Lackawanna & Western F3 No. 663
  • Delaware, Lackawanna & Western F3 No. 664
  • New York, New Haven & Hartford FL9 No. 2019
  • Wabash F7A No. 1189
  • Canadian National FPA4 No. 6789
  • Reading F7A No. 204
  • SOO Line FP7 No. 2500
  • Pan Am Railways FP9 No. PAR-1
  • Wabash E8A No. 1009
  • Iowa Pacific E8A No. 515
  • Potomac Eagle (B&O) F7A No. 722
  • Potomac Eagle (C&O) F7A No. 8016

Additionally, The Norfolk & Western Class J 611 steam passenger locomotive from the Virginia Transportation Museum will be arriving for its restoration.  After leaving the Virginia Museum of Transportation on May 24, the Class J 611 will arrive at the North Carolina Transportation Museum on or about May 29, 2014. She will be the guest of honor at the museum’s Streamliners event. Restoration will begin shortly afterwards. The 37-bay Bob Julian Roundhouse on the grounds of the Museum is one of the last remaining roundhouses in the United States that can handle a locomotive the size of the Class J 611.

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