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Pennsylvania Railroad H6/H6a/H6b/H6sa/H6sb
PRR 2846
Type and origin
Power type Steam
Builder PRR Altoona Works, Baldwin Locomotive Works, Alco -P
Build date H6: 1899-1901
H6a: 1901-1905
H6b: 1905–1913
Total produced H6: 189
H6a: 1,242
H6b: 603
Total: 2,034
Number rebuilt 699 to H6sa/H6sb
Configuration 2-8-0
Gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Leading wheel
36 in (0.91 m)
Driver diameter 56 in (1.42 m)
Length 65 ft 11 in (20.09 m) (including 70F70 tender)[1]
Weight on drivers 180,000 lb (81,650 kg))[1]
Locomotive weight 204,800 lb (92,900 kg))[1]
Locomotive and tender
combined weight
343,600 lb (155,900 kg)
Fuel type Coal
Fuel capacity 29,200 lb (13,200 kg))[1]
Water capacity 7,200 US gal (27,000 l; 6,000 imp gal))[1]
Boiler pressure 195 psi (1.34 MPa)
Firegrate area H6: 33.3 sq ft (3.09 m2)
Others: 49.0 sq ft (4.55 m2)
Cylinders Two
Cylinder size H6/H6a/H6b: 22 in × 28 in (560 mm × 710 mm)
H6sa/H6sb: 23 in × 28 in (580 mm × 710 mm)
Performance figures
Tractive effort H6: 42,717 lbf (190.01 kN)
H6a/H6b: 42,168 lbf (187.57 kN)
H6sa/H6sb43,841 lbf (195.01 kN)

PRR 2846[2]

Consolidation Freight Locomotive No. 2846
PRR H6 is located in Pennsylvania
Nearest city Strasburg, Pennsylvania
Coordinates 39°58′56″N 76°9′40″W / 39.98222°N 76.16111°W / 39.98222; -76.16111Coordinates: 39°58′56″N 76°9′40″W / 39.98222°N 76.16111°W / 39.98222; -76.16111
Area 0.1 acres (0.040 ha)
Built 1905
Architect Baldwin Locomotive Works
Governing body Private
MPS Pennsylvania Railroad Rolling Stock TR
NRHP Reference #


Added to NRHP December 17, 1979

The Pennsylvania Railroad's class H6, H6a, and H6b steam locomotives were of the 2-8-0 "Consolidation" freight type, the most numerous class on the railroad with 2032 units. The three sub-classes differed as follows:[4]

Class Firebox Gate Tractive Force Driver Size #Built Years Built
H6 narrow 33.3 42717 56” 189 1899-01
H6a Wide 49 42168 56" 1242 1901-05
H6b Wide 49 42168 56" 603 1905-13

In the 1920s, 699 H6a and H6b had superheaters added and cylinder size increased from 22” to 23” and reclassified to H6sa and H6sb.

Class H6 were used throughout the system as mainline freight haulers, on local freights, and as switchers in yards. They were frequently seen double and triple heading long freight trains up the steep grades on the Pennsy.[5]

During the period when the PRR was building the H-6 class, the railroad had effective stock control of the B&O, and installed a cooperative president Leonor Loree. The B&O acquired from American Locomotive Co. a large group of identical locomotives, originally classed I-4, but later classified as B&O class E-24. The E-24 class had many variations, some being converted to switchers, superheated, and new valve chests. The E-24a was equivalent to the PRR H-6sb. On the B&O the E-24 class survived to the Diesel era.


PRR #2846, an H6sb built in 1905 by the Baldwin Locomotive Works, has been preserved by the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania with two other examples of the H class. #2846 was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979 as Consolidation Freight Locomotive No. 2846.


  1. ^ a b c d e Pennsylvania Railroad. "PRR H6b 2-8-0 Steam Loco". Retrieved 2008-01-02. 
  2. ^ "Motive Power Roster Steam Locomotives: 24" (PDF). Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  3. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  4. ^ Staufer, Alvin F., Edson, D. William, and Harley, E. Thomas. Pennsy Power lll. Staufer. ISBN 0-944513-10-7
  5. ^ Westing, Fred. Pennsy Steam and Semaphores. Superior Publishing ISBN 0-517-36955-9