E M Short 0-4-0 "Switcher" Locomotives in the USA

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class Midget (Locobase 16478)

Data from "Details of Locomotives at the World's Columbian Exposition - Third Article", Railroad Gazette, Volume 25 (24 November 1893), pp. 848-849 and 851. See also James Y Hamrick, "The Lumber Industry of Eastern North Carolina", Chapter VII [7],Annual Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the State of North Carolina, Volume 12 (Raleigh, NC: Guy V Barnes, Printer to the Council of State, 1899), pp. 78, tables on 88-90. (Thanks to Chris Hohl for his 13 January 2020 email and well-drafted spreadsheet, the latter noting the absence of this locomotive from Locobase and providing detailed data and source information.) Works number was 1440 in March 1893.

After its tour of duty at the Chicago World's Fair in 1893, the Midget was sold to Beaufort, North Carolina logger E M Short. In 1898, the sawing and dressing of lumber was the "greatest manufacturing industry" in eastern North Carolina. (The only industries larger in all of North Carolina were, predictably, cotton and tobacco.). The report claimed that to a visitor, "a large lumber mill is especially attractive" and described enthusiastically the whirr and bustle of this enterprise. Citing a statistic that a mill turning out 200,000 ft a day would create the wood needed to build eight houses, the BLS continued. "This shows the possibilities of this industry," adding with no detectable irony, "and how quickly the tall, old giants of the forests that have withstood the storms of centuries past may, in a single day, be turned into lumber, ready for the markets of the world."

Midget's owner reported that the demand for North Carolina pine had increased so the mill was in operation 300 days. Total board feet cut came to 8,000,000. Short had 70 men on the payroll, of which 30 were in the mill and 40 in the woods. The saw mill used steam power totalling 380 hp.

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Middle Run Media

Locobase ID16478
RailroadE M Short
Number in Class1
Road Numbers2
Number Built1
Valve GearStephenson
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)4 / 1.22
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)4 / 1.22
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase1
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)4 / 1.22
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)10,000 / 4536
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)10,000 / 4536
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)300 / 1.14
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)8 / 4
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)22 / 559
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)140 / 9.70
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)6" x 10" / 152x254
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)1947 / 883.15
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 5.14
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)48 - 1.5" / 38
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)
Flue/Tube length (ft / m) 3.67 / 1.12
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)19.10 / 1.77
Grate Area (sq ft / m2) 3.90 / 0.36
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)88 / 8.18
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)88 / 8.18
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume266.67
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation546
Same as above plus superheater percentage546
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area2674
Power L12854
Power MT1258.40

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