Home Open Account Help 177 users online

Steam & Excursion > A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!


Date: 11/07/19 02:11
A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: LoggerHogger

Most all of us came into contact with steam locomotives at an early age.  For some lucky folks they may have seen their first steam locomotive as it worked in active service for a railroad.  However, for many others, myself included, their first exposure to a steam locomotive was one that was parked as a display engine in a park or other similar setting.

Growing up in San Francisco in the 1950's, the first steam locomotive that I can recall being exposed to in any serious way was Southern Pacific's 0-6-0 #1294 that was placed on display in the playground at the San Francisco Zoo.  Not only was this locomotive visible to the public, it was actually available for the kids like me to climb all over in the playground.  The engine was an early version of "jungle gym" in the eyes of the park superintendent.  The plaque on the side of the cab even announced that the locomotive had been donated by SP "To San Francisco Children Of All Ages".  Thus, kids like me thought of her as "our locomotive".

Unfortunately for all of us who spent hours on #1294 as kids, she did not survive as long as her fellow locomotives used as display engines.  It was not the fact that she was used as a plything by young children that did her in, it was the location that was chosen for her display.  #1294 had been set up near the coast where there was nothing to block the salt air from attacking all her metal surfaces.  Over the next 3 decades the salt air left poor old #1294 in such a sad shape of rust and deterioration, that the Zoo managment gave the word in 1987 to cut her up and remove her as a liability.  In this photo was see her last hours as the scrapper reduces her to pieces for the last time.

Fortunately, many other steam locomotives have come into my life since I first played on #1294 and they have, for the most part, all done much better than she did.

Martin



Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 11/07/19 02:34 by LoggerHogger.




Date: 11/07/19 04:29
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: grizzledgary

Martin,

Of course I'm thinking the "jewelry" (as in bell, whistle, headlight, builders plate, etc.) had long been removed but as this locomotive made it well into the "preservation era" do you know if anything at all in terms of appliances, fittings or other parts were saved to possibly be used elsewhere, if only for a museum display perhaps with this photo as a reminder of how wrong things may go? Thanks in advance,

Gary  



Date: 11/07/19 04:50
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: LoggerHogger

I do know that the PLA was allowed to remove what they thought they could use for their #1269.

Martin



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/07/19 04:51 by LoggerHogger.



Date: 11/07/19 06:25
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: Frisco1522

Wow, that's a cheerful way to start my morning............



Date: 11/07/19 08:49
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: nickatnight

What an awesome creature the steam locomotive is. Even in this condition it speaks of power, strength, and balance. When one considers  how radically it changed society -  our ability to travel and haul goods -  it's hard to exaggerate how it changed the world. 


Nickatnight



Date: 11/07/19 11:02
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: PHall

Nothing metal survives long in the "Fog Belt" that is west of 19th Avenue. Cars, locomotives, it all rusts. Pretty quickly if you don't try to protect them.



Date: 11/07/19 12:04
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: TonyJ

PHall Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Nothing metal survives long in the "Fog Belt" that
> is west of 19th Avenue. Cars, locomotives, it all
> rusts. Pretty quickly if you don't try to protect
> them.

So true! I grew up in the Outer Sunset District (31st Avennue) and you'd declare the day a holiday if no fog rolled in the morning. As for SP1294 I remember when she was placed on display. and for years my neighborhood friends and I climbed all over it, and the cable car next to it.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/07/19 18:44 by TonyJ.



Date: 11/07/19 12:06
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: okrifan

When I first saw the picture I thought someone had left it parked on a inner-city street overnight...



Date: 11/07/19 12:30
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: drumwrencher

We have a small piece, maybe 1/3 or 1/4, of one of 1294’s drivers at SF Trains. I’ll upload a pic later tonite - although I must admit, it’s not much to look at, but it’s at least something from the locomotive...

Walter

Posted from iPhone



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/07/19 12:56 by drumwrencher.



Date: 11/07/19 14:48
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: nycman

My first steam loco exposure was probably a similar switcher, but in New York Central paint.  I was lucky enough to witness all manner of NY Central mainline steam as a youth, even though even then the diesels were taking over.  We lived very close to the NY C mainline in upstate NY state.  I never saw one of them cut up like yours, Martin.



Date: 11/08/19 13:00
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: KMiddlebrook

Management had put severe routing restrictions on how the locomotive could possiblly be moved out of the zoo.    It was very costly resulting in new potential owners backing out.   At least, the PLA retrieved some items for their projects.   



Date: 11/08/19 18:23
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: totrainyard

Jungle Gym version of 0-6-0
 




Date: 11/08/19 18:35
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: totrainyard

The Lawsuit Nightmare Express 0-6-0
 




Date: 11/08/19 18:40
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: zoohogger

As a small boy Mom took us to pick up Dad at the Downers Grove, Illinois station as he arrived home on the CB&Q Commuter trains.  They told me that steam still powered the trains in the early 50's, so I suppose it is why I am a railfan today.
My first memorable steamer was CBQ 5632 in 1962 and as we all know, it ended up scrapped much like the one in Martin's photo. Oddly enough, many more have come alive to take it's place. What a great hobby!


Rick Zorko



Date: 11/08/19 20:26
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: hawkinsun

I also remember CB&Q 5632 and chased it several times.  I remember when my dad found out that the C&WI cut it up.  He was so POd that I think he would have liked to have shot somebody.  What a loss of such a nice machine.  I was glad to hear the judge doubled the one million dollar award to the owner of it, in the court case following the event.   He was pissed too, and I still am.  I'm trying to remember, was it Dick Jensen, the owner ?

Craig Hanson
Vay, Idaho



Date: 11/09/19 21:15
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: wabash2800

Yes, it was Dick (Richard) but for a good read on him and his steam locos, go to:

https://www.steamlocomotive.com/places/jensen/

Victor A. Baird
http://www.erstwhilepublications.com



Date: 11/09/19 22:45
Re: A Tough Way To Lose The First Steam Locomotive You Ever Saw!
Author: hawkinsun

Thanks Victor, for the link to the Jensen story, as sad as it was.  He probably died of all the stress of those events.  It seems like he was a really good guy with a lot of bad luck.  I still remember how pissed my dad was when he found out about the CB&Q 5632 from a friend he worked with.  I was lucky enough as a little kid to have gotten my picture taken in the cab of a Milwaukee Road Hiawatha F7 4-6-4 before it got scrapped.  I was about 3 years old in 1951 and I still remember that event.  That was engine #102, and I have the bell from #105.  There were only six of them.

Craig Hanson
Vay, Idaho



[ Share Thread on Facebook ] [ Search ] [ Start a New Thread ] [ Back to Thread List ] [ <Newer ] [ Older> ] 
Page created in 0.0636 seconds