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Steam & Excursion > First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin


Date: 06/26/20 08:41
First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: ironmtn

Last Friday, I posted some images of CB&Q 4960, taken on my very first steam excursion as a high school sophomore, to break-in and celebrate a new scanner. But as much as I enjoyed the 4960 on that special day, and have been lucky enough to be able to see and photograph a number of restored and operational steam locomotives through the years, there is but one that was always first and finest for me: Frisco 1522.  Here the beautiful 4-8-2 heads northward on C&NW trackage on Friday, July 22, 1988 approaching Buda, Illinois. It was bound for Chicago, and a series of trips on Wisconsin Central which would occur into mid-August. One more early scan from images of that trip to break-in and celebrate the new scanner.

I had followed the 1522, running behind a C&NW diesel, on this oft-forgotten line between Madison, Ill., just outside St. Louis, and a junction with the North Western's east-west mainline at Nelson, Illinois. There the 1522 would make as hard right turn into Chicago on C&NW, before heading northward on the WC. This line to Nelson, with an intricate and convoluted corporate history, gave C&NW access to the St. Louis gateway.  But it mainly functioned in steam days as a coal route, tapping a group of mines northeast of St. Louis for locomotive coal. Bypassing both Springfield and Peoria, it also passed through few other small towns, except near St. Louis. And so, by this point in the ferry trip, cruising through the cornfields on one of only a few closely paralleling roads, I surprisingly found myself driving alone alongside the 1522, no other vehicles in sight. Wellie Lazier was firing, and  NKP 765's Gary Bensman, who had assisted with the restoration, was sitting on the bench seat on the front of the tender. Discussing the image recently with Don Wirth (Frisco1522), he thinks that Jeff Schmid may have been running from the way the engine is hooked up.

As I drove alongside the 1522 at about 40 mph on a quiet county road, I picked up the camera sitting on the front passenger seat, pointed it out the right front window in the approximate direction of the train, and tripped the shutter. I expected a nice, speed-blurred image of roadside weeds. What I got instead was this. It has always been one of my favorite images of my favorite steam locomotive.

MC
Muskegon, Michigan
(Edits for spelling and punctuation, and to properly name C&NW as the "North Western" rather than "Northwestern" in the second paragraph. Horrors, such a rookie error. Sorry, C&NW fans).



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 06/26/20 18:25 by ironmtn.




Date: 06/26/20 11:30
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: refarkas

A truely first-class grab shot.
Bob



Date: 06/26/20 12:53
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: TractiveEffort

That is one great shot!  Thanks for sharing.



Date: 06/26/20 16:22
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: gbmott

Nice, Mark.  Good job of largely cropping out the dismal which I assume was along because of its cab signals.  And Don, why would you have her all the way down in the corner when she was, I assume, pretty much just drifting?  I realize I may be showing my ignorance.

Gordon



Date: 06/26/20 16:26
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: tomstp

Gordon I may be wrong but I don't think the reverse lever is all the way down in the corner.  Instead it looks fairly  close to center.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/26/20 16:31 by tomstp.



Date: 06/26/20 16:40
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: HotWater

tomstp Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Gordon I may be wrong but I don't think the
> reverse lever is all the way down in the corner.
>  Instead it looks fairly  close to center.

No, since the locomotive is essentially being towed by the diesel, there is very light throttle in order to provide lubrication by way of the steam flow through the valves & cylinders. Thus, the gear is almost "in the corner" in order to provide some draft for the Fireman.



Date: 06/26/20 18:32
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: ironmtn

gbmott Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Nice, Mark.  Good job of largely cropping out the
> dismal which I assume was along because of its cab
> signals.  And Don, why would you have her all the
> way down in the corner when she was, I assume,
> pretty much just drifting?  I realize I may be
> showing my ignorance.
>
> Gordon

Sheer luck on cropping out the diesel. The image here is full frame from the original Kodachrome slide, no cropping at all in Photoshop when preparing it for posting. One of the luckiest shots I've ever made. Glad you all liked it, and thanks for the kind words. As to how the engine was hooked up, I leave that to others far more knowledgeable on such matters than I.

MC



Date: 06/27/20 04:16
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: UP951West

Oh, that's a classic action shot !!   Thanks for sharing. 



Date: 06/27/20 06:17
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: Frisco1522

I wasn't running.  Would have either been Pat Cravens or Jeff Schmid, most likely Jeff.   Wellie Lazier is firing and it appears to be Gary on the jump seat.  They did work the engine and I don't know how fast they were going here.
I had to work that day and arrived in Chicago that evening, engine watched all night and followed the freight run to Fon du Lac and then the round trip to Stevens Point.  Had to go back to work and missed the fantrip and trip back.
Good days and bad days, damned job kept interfering with my hobby.
I was only a fireman at that time until some reorganizing in 1988 or so.  Three of us ended up as engineers, myself, Jeff Schmid (the original licensed BN engineer) and Wellie Lazier.   Wellie and I went through BN's ABTH school in Overland Park.  The SLSTA, in the FRA's eyes was considered a RR at that time and we had strict rules exams, check rides from BN folks and were certified.
Any time on BN and later BNSF we always performed at our most professional and in return were treated like just another train movement on their lines.   We came along at the right time, did all the right things and went out on top.  
I miss sitting at the throttle and hammering through the small towns, seeing the awe on youngsters and the tears on the old heads when we went by.
And Gordon, I wouldn't have had the engine down in the corner, but there was a learning curve involved.



Date: 06/28/20 11:28
Re: First Scan-Frisco 1522 Friday: North to Wisconsin
Author: NKP779

Great photo, and good background chit-chat!

Posted from Android



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