4-8-2 "Mountain" Locomotives in the USA

A Canadian National Mountain

On the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad, as the number of cars grew on its passenger trains, it became necessary to doublehead "Pacifics" to get these longer trains over the Allegheny Mountains. In 1910, the C&O turned to the American Locomotive Company for a more powerful locomotive.

The engineers at ALCO made a study of the road conditions and other requirements. From this study they recommended a locomotive with eight drivers, like the "Mikado", for traction to which they would add a four-wheel lead truck, like the "Pacific", for speed and riding stability. The result was a new wheel arrangement, the 4-8-2.

The C&O agreed and in 1911, became the first North American railroad to take delivery of a locomotive with the 4-8-2 wheel arrangement. This locomotive was numbered 316 but was later renumbered 540. The C&O named this new type of locomotive "Mountain" because it was developed to haul passenger trains over the Allegheny Mountains.

The "Mountain" 4-8-2 was a fast dual-service locomotive that was bought by many railroads in need of more motive power for the ever increasing weight of passenger trains and to compete for fast freight.

In North America 41 railroads bought or built 2,204 "Mountain" Locomotives. The New York Central and the Pennsylvania Railroad used a combined total of 901 or 41% of the total. The first one built was C&O number 316, in 1911, and the last one built was B&O number 5594, in 1948.

The 4-8-2 was the locomotive that demonstrated the value of combining eight coupled high drivers with the speed potential of the leading four wheel truck. Had the engineers, in 1911, recognized the serious limitation of the two trailing wheels and had allowed more weight by adding a trailing four wheel truck then the ultimate dual-service locomotive would have been developed 16 years earlier than the 1927 introduction of the "Northern".

Information for this introduction to Mountains provided by Richard Duley.

Builders of 4-8-2 "Mountain" Type Locomotives (by Richard Duley)

Railroad LineQuantity, Builder
Alaska Railroad2 Baldwin
Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe51 Baldwin
Baltimore & Ohio2 Baldwin 42 B&O
Bangor & Aroostook10 ALCO
Boston & Maine18 Baldwin
Canadian National Railway42 CLC 32 MLW
Canadan Pacific Railway2 CPR
Central Vermont4 ALCO
Central of Georgia27 ALCO 5 Baldwin
Chesapeake & Ohio8 ALCO 2 Baldwin
Chicago, Burlington & Quincy13 BLW 8 Lima
Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific62 ALCO
Delaware, Lackawanna & Western45 ALCO
Denver & Rio Grande Western30 ALCO 10 Baldwin
Florida East Coast90 ALCO
Grand Trunk Western5 Baldwin
Great Northern28 Baldwin 15 LIMA
Illinois Central35 ALCO 25 LIMA 76 IC
Lehigh & Hudson River3 Baldwin
Lehigh Valley6 ALCO
Louisville & Nashville22 Baldwin
Minneapolis, St. Paul & Sault Sainte Marie18 ALCO 3 Soo
Missouri Pacific33 ALCO
Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis5 ALCO 8 Baldwin
New Orleans Great Northern3 ALCO
New York Central435 ALCO 165 Lima
New York, New Haven & Hartford70 ALCO
New York, Ontario & Western20 ALCO
Norfolk & Western10 ALCO 12 Baldwin 26 N&W
Pennsylvania225 Baldwin 50 LIMA 26 PRR
Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac4 ALCO
Rutland4 ALCO
St. Louis - San Francisco30 Baldwin 34 SLSF
Seaboard Air Line25 ALCO 36 Baldwin
Southern Pacific34 ALCO 49 SP
Southern58 Baldwin
Tennessee Central4 ALCO
Texas & Pacific5 ALCO 5 Baldwin
Union Pacific60 ALCO
Wabash25 Baldwin
Western Pacific10 ex FEC
Western Railway of Alabama2 ALCO

Number of 4-8-2 "Mountain" Type Locomotives Built by Year (by Richard Duley)

Mountain Locomotives Built By Year

Railroads that used 4-8-2 "Mountain" locomotives in USA (data provided by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media)

Surviving Examples of 4-8-2 "Mountain" Locomotives in the USA

No.ClassF.M. WhyteGaugeRailroad LineLocationStatusBuilder InfoNotes
152715004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Langan Park, Mobile, ALdisplayBaldwin #59201, 1926
250025004-8-24'-8½"IC Age of Steam Memorial, Fairview Park, Centralia, ILdisplayIC, 1937 Built from IC 2953 2-10-2 boiler (Lima)
3001 (909)L-3a4-8-24'-8½"NYC (T&P) National NYC Railroad Museum, Elkhart, INdisplayALCO (Schenectady) #69338, 1940 Long term restoration candidate
3042L-3b4-8-24'-8½"NYC National NYC Railroad Museum, Elkhart, INunknownALCO (Schenectady), 1940Tender only, on display behind 3001. Used as auxiliary water tender for American Freedom Train and Chessie Steam Special then damaged in roundhouse fire.
2523P-24-8-24'-8½"GN Kandiyohi County Historic Park, Willmar, MNdisplayBaldwin #57343, 1923
150115004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Schuman Park, Rolla, MOdisplayBaldwin #56235, 1923
2933L-2d4-8-24'-8½"NYC Museum of Transportation, St. Louis, MOcosmetic restorationALCO (Schenectady) #68126, 1929Under restoration since 2004
152215004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Museum of Transportation, St. Louis, MOdisplay serviceableBaldwin #59134, 1926 retired in 2002
152915004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Frisco Park, Amory, MSdisplayBaldwin #59203, 05/1926
254225004-8-24'-8½"IC McComb Railroad Museum, McComb, MSdisplayPaducah, 1951 moved from Edgewood Park, 6/21/2000
151915004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Railroad Museum of NW OK, Enid, OKdisplayBaldwin #58607, 1925
152615004-8-24'-8½"SLSF Museum of the Great Plains, Lawton, OKdisplayBaldwin #59200, 1926
6039U-1-c4-8-24'-8½"GTW Steamtown National Historic Site, Scranton, PAdisplayBaldwin #58463, 1925
6755M1b4-8-24'-8½"PRR Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Strasburg, PAdisplayPRR (Altoona) #4225, 1930
2507P-24-8-24'-8½"SP&S (GN) Wishram Amtrak Station, Wishram, WAdisplaypainted in 2002, from Port of Pasco, WA

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