Railroad Photography By Ken Hulsey

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Sun Sets On The City of Los Angeles - By Ken Hulsey

Photographer: Ken Hulsey
Location: Orange Empire Railroad Museum (Perris, Ca)

Information from the Orange Empire Railroad Museum Website - HERE

This engine was built by the Electro-Motive Division (EMD) of General Motors Corp. in May 1953, as an E8-A locomotive: an E-unit of the 8th model variation (2250 horsepower, later upgraded to 2400 hp), designated "A" because it is a leading engine with cab (compared to boxy non-cab "B" trailing engines). It was part of an order of 17 E-8As for the Union Pacific (UP) system.

The Union Pacific placed the E-8s in their general passenger service pool, and in general used them to replace older steam and diesel engines. One of the UP 942's more glamorous assignments was as one of several engines pulling the famous streamliner City of Los Angeles on runs between Chicago and Los Angeles. This notable train used streamlined locomotives and cars, all painted in the distinctive UP colors of Armour yellow with red stripes, and carried politicians, business magnates, and Hollywood stars between the cultural centers of the Midwest and Southwest.

After 19 years of service on the UP, locomotive 942 was sold to a railroad equipment dealer in Chicago in 1972, and then resold to the Chicago & North Western Railway (C&NW). The C&NW renumbered the locomotive C&NW 510, and used it in Chicago-area commuter train operations. This service was taken over by the government agency Metra, including this engine. The engine was retired in 1988, and ended up in a railway salvage yard in Colton, California.

In 1995, the Museum raised the funds to purchase the locomotive. With the help of the salvage yard and several railroads and railroad shops, many necessary repairs were made on the engine and it was moved to Perris in June 1997. The locomotive operated at the Museum regularly through 2009 when it was sidelined by a main generator failure.

As of late 2011, the locomotive is undergoing restoration to repair the failed main generator and repaint it to its full Union Pacific colors. As of December 1, 2011, the generator repair has been completed and body work is underway in anticipation of repainting.

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