Southern Pacific 4449
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|Southern Pacific 4449|
SP 4449 standing idle under steam, waiting to start Christmas excursion, December 13, 2005
|Builder||Lima Locomotive Works|
|Build date||May 1941|
|Gauge||4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm)|
|Driver diameter||80 in (2,032 mm)|
|Weight on drivers||275,700 lb (125,100 kg)|
|Locomotive weight||475,000 lb (215,000 kg)|
|Locomotive and tender
|870,000 lb (390,000 kg)|
|Fuel type||Bunker Oil|
|Cylinder size||25.5 in (650 mm) dia × 32 in (810 mm) stroke|
|Tractive effort||64,800 lbf (288,000 N), 78,000 lbf (350,000 N) with booster|
|Number in class||28|
|First run||May 30, 1941|
|Retired||October 2, 1957|
|Restored||Removed from Oaks Park on December 14, 1974|
|Current owner||City of Portland, Oregon|
|Disposition||Currently under restoration; based in Portland, Oregon, at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center|
Southern Pacific 4449 is the only surviving example of Southern Pacific Railroad's (SP) GS-4 class of steam locomotives. The locomotive is a streamlined 4-8-4 (Northern) type steam locomotive. GS is abbreviated from "Golden State", a nickname for California (where the locomotive was operated in regular service), or "General Service." The locomotive was built by Lima Locomotive Works in Lima, Ohio, for SP in May 1941; it received the red-and-orange "Daylight" paint scheme for the passenger trains of the same name which it hauled for most of its service career. No. 4449 was retired from revenue service in 1956 and put into storage. In 1958 it was donated, by the railroad, to the City of Portland, who then put it on static display in Oaks Amusement Park, where it remained until 1974. It was restored to operation for use in the American Freedom Train, which toured the 48 contiguous United States for the American Bicentennial celebrations. Since then, 4449 has been operated in excursion service throughout the continental US; its operations are based at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center in Portland, where it is maintained by a group of dedicated volunteers called Friends of SP 4449. In 1983, a poll of Trains magazine readers chose the 4449 as the most popular locomotive in the nation.
4449 was the last engine manufactured in Southern Pacific's first order of GS-4 (Golden State/General Service) locomotives. 4449 was placed into service on May 30, 1941, and spent its early career assigned to the Coast Daylight, SP's premier passenger train between San Francisco and Los Angeles, California, but it also pulled many other of the SP's named passenger trains. After the arrival of newer GS-4s and GS-5s, 4449 was assigned to Golden State Route and Sunset Route passenger trains. 4449 was re-assigned to the Coast Division in the early 1950s. One of 4449's career highlights happened on October 17, 1954, when 4449 and sister 4447 pulled a special 10-car train for a railway historical society from Los Angeles to Owenyo, California, and return. In 1955, after being one of the last few Daylight steam engines in Daylight livery, 4449 was painted black and silver and its streamlined side skirting was removed due to dieselization of the Coast Daylight in January of that year. 4449 was then assigned to Southern Pacific's San Joaquin Valley line, occasionally pulling passenger trains such as the San Joaquin Daylight between Oakland and Bakersfield as well as fast freight and helper service. 4449 was semi-retired from service on September 24, 1956, and was kept as an emergency back-up locomotive until it was officially retired on October 2, 1957, and was placed in storage along with several other GS-class engines near Southern Pacific's Bakersfield roundhouse.
Display at Oaks Park
In 1958, when most of the GS class engines had already been scrapped, a then black-and-silver painted 4449 was removed from storage and donated to the city of Portland, Oregon, on April 24, 1958, where it was placed on outdoor public display in Oaks Park. Since the equipment was considered obsolete, 4449 was not actively chosen for static display. It was picked simply because it was the first in the dead line and could be removed with the least number of switching moves. During its time on display, 4449 was repeatedly vandalized and had many of its parts stolen, including its builder's plates and whistle. The locomotive quickly deteriorated due to neglect. It was evaluated for restoration in 1974 after becoming a candidate to pull the American Freedom Train. Its size, power, and lines made it an efficient fit for the train. After finding that 4449's bearings and rods were in good shape, it was chosen.
American Freedom Train
4449 was removed from display on December 14, 1974, and restored at Burlington Northern's Hoyt Street roundhouse in Portland and returned to operation April 21, 1975, wearing a special paint scheme of red, white, and blue. As part of the American Freedom Train, the engine pulled a display train around the most of the United States. Afterwards, 4449 pulled an Amtrak special, the Amtrak Transcontinental Steam Excursion. After nearly two years on the road, 4449 was returned to storage in Portland, this time under protective cover and not exposed to the elements.
4449 hauling the American Freedom Train
In 1981, 4449 was returned to its original "Daylight" colors for the first Railfair event at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento, California. In 1984, 4449 pulled an all Daylight-painted train from Portland to New Orleans, Louisiana and back, to publicize the World's Fair. The 7,477-mile (12,033 km) round trip was the longest steam train excursion in US history. In 1986, 4449 went to Hollywood to appear in Tough Guys, and pulled business trains for the Southern Pacific. 4449 had a notable moment 1989 when the engine and famed 4-8-4 Union Pacific 844 made a side-by-side entrance into Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal in 1989 for the station's 50th anniversary celebration. The two locomotives then raced each other on Santa Fe's and Southern Pacific's parallel main lines through Cajon Pass, with 4449 eventually taking the lead. No. 4449 returned to Railfair in Sacramento in 1991 and again in 1999. In 2000, 4449 was repainted black and silver for a Burlington Northern Santa Fe employee appreciation special. It was painted black and silver to mark that BNSF is a freight railroad and to commemorate the days of the 4449's and other GS locomotives assigned to freight, helper, or local passenger trains. 4449 was repainted into the previous American Freedom Train scheme again from early 2002 to 2004 after the events of the September 11th terrorist attacks. In the fall of 2004, 4449 returned to the classic Daylight paint scheme, this time in its "as delivered" appearance.
On May 18 and May 19, 2007, the engine made another appearance with UP 844 in the Pacific Northwest for the "Puget Sound Excursion", on BNSF Railway tracks from Tacoma to Everett, round-trip.
On March 24, 2009, it was announced that 4449 would attend Trainfestival 2009 in Owosso, Michigan from July 23–26 with an all-day excursion planned on the 23rd and 24th and a photo runby planned for each trip. The engine was then placed on display for the rest of the event. The historic 2,500 mile move from Portland to Owosso was arranged by the Friends of the 4449, Amtrak, Steam Railroading Institute of Owosso, and the Friends of the 261. The organization of Milwaukee Road 261 lent some of their first class passenger cars, including former Milwaukee Road Super Dome #53 and Cedar Rapids Skytop Lounge for the 4449 and for the other excursion trains at the festival. The train left Portland on July 3 and returned on October 20. Future excursions are being planned to follow the locomotive's mandatory 15-year inspection and overhaul, currently (as of summer 2013) in progress.
1986: Tough Guys as the Gold Coast Flyer Express train 1990: Come See the Paradise
Disposition and maintenance
From 1981 to 2012, No. 4449 resided at Union Pacific's (née Southern Pacific) Brooklyn roundhouse in Portland along with several other historic steam and diesel locomotives. The Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation, a partnership of non-profit organizations that owned or maintained historic rolling stock at the roundhouse, began a campaign in late 2009 to construct a permanent, publicly accessible engine house for the City of Portland's steam locomotives. Upon the closing of the Brooklyn Roundhouse in June 2012, the 4449 was moved with its stablemates to the Oregon Rail Heritage Center (ORHC), a new restoration facility and public interpretive center adjacent to the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) in southeast Portland. The ORHC opened to the public in September 2012.
4449 is maintained by Doyle McCormack, a retired Union Pacific engineer and collector, along with many volunteers. When the engine was on display at Oaks Park, Jack Holst, a Southern Pacific employee, looked after 4449 along with two other steam locomotives, SP&S #700 and OR&N 197. Holst kept the engines' bearings and rods oiled in case they were ever to move again. Holst died in 1972 and never got to see 4449 return to operation.
Only one other Southern Pacific GS-class steam engine survives, Southern Pacific 4460, a GS-6, which is on static display at the Museum of Transportation in St. Louis, Missouri. It was built during World War II, but was never painted the famous Daylight paint scheme. Instead, it was painted black and silver thus, giving it the nickname "Black Daylight".
- Painter, John (January 23, 1984). "Restored bicentennial train gears up for Portland-to-World's Fair haul". The Oregonian.
- Huxtable (1987), pp. 37, 43.
- Diebert and Strapac, p 238.
- "Third Locomotive in Oaks Collection". (April 25, 1958). The Oregonian, section 3, p. 14.
- Huxtable (1987), p. 59.
- Huxtable (1987), p. 65.
- Huxtable (1987), p. 75.
- Huxtable (1987), p. 95.
- Lawrence, Elrond G. (August 1989). "Happy Birthday, LAUPT: The 50th Anniversary of Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal prompts California's biggest steam show in years". Pacific RailNews, pp. 20–29. Glendale (CA): Interurban Press.
- Foyston, John (October 20, 2004). "Old No. 4449, spruced up, chugs on tour". The Oregonian, p. C1.
- Franz, Justin. "15-year inspection for Daylight." Trains Magazine, June 2013.
- Redden, Jim (December 28, 2007). "Running out of steam? Three locomotives chug toward homelessness, unless new site is OK’d". Portland Tribune. Retrieved July 6, 2013.
- Tims, Dana (September 20, 2012 (print edition September 21)). "Oregon Rail Heritage Center ready for grand opening Saturday, Sunday". The Oregonian. p. B1. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
- "Oregon Rail Heritage Center opens its doors". Official blog of Portland city commissioner Nick Fish. September 24, 2012. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
- Larabee, Mark (November 1, 2009). "Portland's locomotives will get new $3.5 million home". The Sunday Oregonian. Retrieved June 24, 2011.
- Johnsen, Kenneth G. (2006). Southern Pacific Daylight Steam Locomotives. Specialty Press Publishers and Wholesalers, North Branch, MN. ISBN 978-1-58007-098-0.
- Huxtable (1987), p. 19.
- Diebert, Timothy S. and Strapac, Joseph A. (1987). Southern Pacific Company Steam Locomotive Conpendium. Shade Tree Books. ISBN 0-930742-12-5.
- Huxtable, Nils (1987). Daylight Reflections. West Vancouver, BC: Steamscenes. ISBN 0-9691409-2-4.
- Wright, Richard K. (1975). America's Bicentennial Queen Engine 4449 "The Lone Survivor". Wright Enterprises.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Southern Pacific 4449.|
- Friends of SP 4449
- Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation
- Restoration of 4449 and the 1975-1976 Bicentennial American Freedom Train
- NRHS 1992 Fremont, California
- SP 4449 Photography - Cross-country excursion to TrainFestival 2009
- Video of SP 4449 in Michigan in 2009