Southern Railway last steam rungreenspun.com : LUSENET : Southern Railway : One Thread
Everyone has seen the "official" last steam run but that doesn't seem to be the actual end. Locomotive #29 moved under its own power from Gloucester Lumber Co. at Rosman,N.C. to Asheville,N.C. in late 1953(Dec.?)and was cut up in early 1954.Was this the last run over a main line or were there others? I know that steam switchers were used in the yards for a time afterwards as the need arose.Does anyone have hard dates for #29's "last run" and subsequent scrapping?
-- Jim McGhee (email@example.com), January 01, 1999
The 400 was another engine that lasted late like the 29. A former Hayne shopman told me he signed the ICC cabcab for the 400 on 12-31-53 for continued service. One of the jobs it was used on was the Gaffney Switcher at Gaffney SC. They needed a light engine because of light trackage on some of the old 3C lines, especially to Cherokee Falls. As a Charlotte Division engineer, I have always heard that this was the last steam assignment on the railroad. This last steamer met its end in a collision with the the local from Marion. The collision was in yard limits on the old 3C just north of the Charlotte Division overpass in Blacksburg. The Gaffney Switcher engineer is still living, and we discussed the incident recently. He sadly did not keep his timebooks or ticket stubs. Both crews did go to a formal hearing held by Charleston Division officers. The Gaffney crew was found blameless. At the time of the incident this crew understood theirs to be the last steamer in service. Perhaps the records of the investigation can be found, shedding light on the date of 400's fateful last trip. I will be hunting any more info.
-- Ben Lee (Bengineer7@aol.com), March 06, 1999.