At Rockhill, PA, the company built its shops and engine house. As the railroad prospered, passenger service was expanded to include public excursions as well as transport of miners. A new office building and a passenger station, which bears the name of the neighboring town of Orbisonia, PA was constructed.
In 1919, the EBT was purchased by Madeira, Hill & Company. At Mt. Union, it established a coal cleaning plant and a timber transfer. The timber transfer was used to transfer wood from narrow to standard gauge cars. Later they changed the trucks under standard gauge cars and moved these modified cars over the EBT rails and after returning to Mt. Union the standard gauge trucks were reinstalled.
After World War II the need for coal diminished and the EBT began to experience financial difficulty and it closed down in April of 1956.
Soon after closing, the Kovalchick Salvage Company of Indiana, PA bought the railroad and all its assets. In 1960, it restored passenger service. Today, EBT is open to tourists on Saturdays and Sundays from the first weekend in June through the last weekend in October. Steam trains depart Orbisonia, Station at 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm.
The EBT bought a total of six "Mikado" type locomotive during it time as an operating railroad. All six came from the Baldwin Locomotive Works. The first was received in 1911 and was assigned road number 12. It had 48" diameter drivers, 17" x 24" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, it exerted 22,100 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 112,000 pounds. Number 12 was the smallest 2-8-2 on the EBT and it was given the name Millie in 1960.
In 1912, number 14 came from Baldwin. It had 48" diameter drivers, 19" x 24" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, it exerted 27,600 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 147,150 pounds. There was no number 13 on the EBT. Number 15 was delivered in 1914and was very similar to number 14. It had 48" diameter drivers, 19" x 24" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, it exerted 27,600 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 150,150 pounds.
Baldwin delivered three more locomotives, one each in 1916, 1918 and 1920. Number 16, delivered in 1916, had 48" diameter drivers, 20" x 24" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, it exerted 30,600 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 163,000 pounds. Number 17, delivered in 1918 was identical to number 16. The last came in 1920 the last "Mikado" arrived and the locomotive was very similar to numbers 16 and 17 and it was given road number 18. It had 48" diameter drivers, 20" x 24" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, it exerted 30,600 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 164,200 pounds.
All six of the EBT 2-8-2 "Mikado" type locomotives survive today and are located at Rockhill Furnace, PA.
|Qty.||Road Numbers||Year Built||Builder||Notes|
Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University Volume 39, p.39. Works number was 37325 in December 1911.The EBT website (, last accessed 2 February 2012) tells us that this engine set the standard for the EBT Mikados that would follow. It was rated to pull 15 loaded coal cars from the mines.
Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University Volumes 43, p.303 and 45, p. 222. (Thanks to Chris Hohl for his 1 December 2021 email correcting the engine and tender wheelbase.).Works number was 38625 in October 1912 and 41196 in February 1914.Baldwin's spec says that parts were to be interchangeable between the 14 and the slightly earlier #12 shown in Locobase 13812. It's not clear how extensive this interchange might have proven to be as virtually every major element of the design--from the size of the boiler to the size of the tender--grew in size or weight. On the other hand, the 14's younger sister #15 was very similar to the 14, so interchangeability was clearly feasible. Both had an unusual cab window pattern consisting of two narrow windows flanking the center 30" (762 mm) high x 34" (834 mm) wide. The movable sashes split the opening; when fully pulled to the front and rear, they blocked both small windows. Baldwin's order specified a double row of bolts fastening the cylinders to the smokebox saddle. Joining the saddle halves required a double vertical row of bolts to join them. It also required the firebox to "be made as deep as possible." The specs called for the engines to negotiate 16-degree curves on the main line and 23 degrees on the Ys as well as handling the ruling 2% grade. Rail weights were 60 lb/yard (30-kg/metre). Both were rated to haul 18 loaded cars from the mines. The EBT website (, last accessed 2 February 2012) notes that the 15 did in fact have some differences. A comparison of the two specs shows some of the details: The 14 put a ton more weight on the front truck, 1,300 more pounds on the drivers, but 450 fewer pounds on the rear truck. The 14's tender trucks were Diamond arch bar while 15 used Vulcan trucks with cast-steel bolsters; as a result, 15's total wheelbase grew slightly to 53 ft 4 1/2 in (16.27 m).. The 15 had 200 Tate flexible staybolts on the sides of the firebox and at the throat. Both engines have been active in the EBT's later incarnation as a tourist railroad in the 21st century
Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University Volume 53, pp. 404+, Volume 62, pp. 41+; and Volume 65, pp. 101+. See also "Narrow-Gauge Locomotive for the East Broad Top Railroad and Coal Company", Railway and Locomotive Engineering, Volume 29, No 9 (September 1916), p. 315; locomotive roster on the East Broad Top Railroad website at , last accessed 22 January 2022; and a press release announcing the new nonprofit archived at , last accessed 13 March 2020; and "East Broad Top Railroad Locomotive Roster" on the East Broad Top Railroad Homepage at , last accessed 15 May 2022. (Thanks to Chris Hohl for his 1 December 2021 email noting the correct fuel capacity for the 17 & 18.) Works number was 43562 in June 1916, 48075 in March 1918 and 53541 in July 1920.This was the Baldwin-built superheated version of the saturated-boiler Mikado pair shown in Locobase 13813; other than the Denver & Rio Grande Western's K-36 Mikes (Locobase 13), these were the heaviest and most generously endowed 2-8-2s built for the 3-foot gauge. The new engines were about the same size as the 14s, but had even more combined heating surface area of which a good amount was superheated; 9 1/2" (241 mm) piston valves supplied the hotter steam to the cylinders. So the power they exerted at the drawbar must have been considerably greater and indeed they were rated to pull 22 loaded coal hoppers vs the 18 of the earlier pair. The valve gear change was unusual, but the Southern gear did have its coterie of fans. Although Baldwin's spec for the 16 showed higher adhesion and engine weights, R&LE's report gave the 16's weight distribution as follows: 130,900 lb (59,375 kg) on the drivers, 10,800 lb (4,899 kg) on the front truck, 18,800 lb (8,528 kg) on the trailing truck. The 17 and 18's weights were very close. The 17 and 18's tenders held 4,500 US gallons (17,033 litres), 8 1/2 short tons (7.7 metric tons), and weighed 90,000 lb (40,823 kg). The EBT site notes that the 16 is reported to have pulled 60 empty coal hoppers in one train to clear congestion at Mt Union. EBT presented a steep and tightly curved on relatively light 60 lb/yard (30 kg/metre) rail profile as a challenge to the locomotives. Its ruling grade inclined at 2 1/2%, maximum main line curves reached 17 degrees and yard curves tightened to 23 degrees. One adjustment was the use of plain drivers (no flanges) on the middle two axles. 17 is the only of the three to have operated in the 21st century on the EBT's tourist operation. It was stored in 2001 in the Rockhill Furnace roundhouse where the 16 and 18 also lay in storage from the time they last ran in 1955-1956. The Friends of the East Broad Top struggled to deliver revenue service and ultimately fell dormant in 2011. The EBT website notes that both the 16 and 17 replaced the riveted tenders that trailed the engines when new with welded tenders manufactured by Baldwin in the 1940s. In 2019, the FEBT announced that the East Broad Top has been purchased by a new nonprofit the East Broad Top Foundation. The 29 January 2019 release described the new group as made up of "a small group of prominent rail-industry figures and longtime EBT fans." The group will own all of the EBT's assets and 27 miles of the railroad as well as all six preserved narrow-gauge locomotives. After refurbishment and upgrades, the EBT was to recommence regular operations in 2021.
Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
|Railroad||East Broad Top||East Broad Top||East Broad Top|
|Number in Class||1||2||3|
|Locomotive Length and Weight|
|Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)||13 / 3.96||13 / 3.96||13.50 / 4.11|
|Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)||26.17 / 7.98||27.42 / 8.36||28.67 / 8.74|
|Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase||0.50||0.47||0.47|
|Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)||48.87 / 14.90||53 / 14.90||54.67 / 16.66|
|Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)|
|Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)||88,000 / 39,916||124,000 / 56,246||130,900 / 59,375|
|Engine Weight (lbs / kg)||112,000 / 50,802||150,000 / 68,039||160,500 / 72,802|
|Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)||60,000 / 2722||80,000 / 36,287||90,000 / 36,061|
|Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)||172,000 / 53,524||230,000 / 104,326||250,500 / 108,863|
|Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)||3000 / 11.36||4000 / 15.15||4000 / 15.15|
|Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)||6 / 6||7 / 6||7 / 6|
|Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)||37 / 18.50||52 / 26||55 / 27.50|
|Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort|
|Driver Diameter (in / mm)||48 / 1219||48 / 1219||48 / 1219|
|Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)||180 / 12.40||180 / 12.40||180 / 12.40|
|High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)||17" x 24" / 432x610||19" x 24" / 483x610||20" x 24" / 508x610|
|Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)||22,109 / 10028.49||27,617 / 12526.88||30,600 / 13879.94|
|Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort)||3.98||4.49||4.28|
|Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)||178 - 2" / 51||230 - 2" / 51||147 - 2" / 51|
|Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)||22 - 5.375" / 137|
|Flue/Tube length (ft / m)||17 / 5.18||17.50 / 5.33||17.50 / 5.33|
|Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)||110 / 10.22||131 / 12.17||141 / 13.10|
|Grate Area (sq ft / m2)||32.20 / 2.99||36 / 3.34||42.50 / 3.95|
|Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)||1686 / 156.63||2228 / 206.99||2020 / 187.66|
|Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)||465 / 43.20|
|Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)||1686 / 156.63||2228 / 206.99||2485 / 230.86|
|Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume||267.19||282.74||231.39|
|Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)|
|Robert LeMassena's Power Computation||5796||6480||7650|
|Same as above plus superheater percentage||5796||6480||9104|
|Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area||19,800||23,580||30,202|