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Restoring the Texas


The Texas, made famous in a 1950s Disney movie, was one of the players in the war's Great Locomotive Chase in April 1862. Its crew, running the locomotive backward, caught up with Union raiders who tried to destroy track between Big Shanty (now Kennesaw) and Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The raiders achieved little success, and eight of the nearly two dozen captured participants, disguised as civilians, were later hanged in Atlanta as spies. 

"We want to show it as the hard-working engine that it was, not just as one of the engines in the Great Locomotive Chase," Gordon Jones, the history center's senior military historian, said in a statement.

Read the full story here:

Do the locomotion: Famous Civil War engine taking ride on highway

Herman Haupt: Locomotives and Bridges

by General Herman Haupt.

I made the following report on how to destroy bridges and locomotive engines expeditiously:

Washington, D. C, November 1, 1862.

A simple and expeditious mode of destroying bridges, and rendering locomotive engines useless to an enemy, is often a desideratum. Cavalry may penetrate far into an enemy’s country, may reach bridges forming viaducts on important lines of communication, which, it may be desirable to break effectually; or, in retreat, the destruction of a bridge may be essential to the safety of an army, and yet time may not be sufficient to gather combustibles, or they may not be accessible, or the fire may be extinguished, or the damage may be so slight as to be easily repaired.

What is required is the means of certainly and effectually throwing down a bridge in a period of time not exceeding five minutes, and with apparatus so simple and portable that it can be carried in the pocket or a saddle-bag.

Continue reading "Herman Haupt: Locomotives and Bridges" »

Waiting for a train

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Patriot, November 26, 1863:

In company with many others, we took the train for Gettysburg, via Hanover Junction, on Wednesday morning, to swell the ranks of the thronging thousands who, prompted by curiosity and patriotism or drawn by the tender ties of love for the dead, were gathering there to witness and participate in the the grand and solemn consecration of the burying place of the nation's dead. . . .

The train n which we rode was filled to its utmost capacity, many being forced to stand on the platform throughout the journey. The passengers were from all parts of the country, and almost every loyal State was represented in each car. The accommodation of the roads -- the Northern Central and the Hanover and Gettysburg -- were by no means sufficient for the occasion, and all persons going to or from the scene of interest were put to great inconvenience in consequence. Some were unable to get beyond Hanover Junction on Thursday. We saw a party of over fifty persons, who had journeyed over six hundred miles for the express purpose of attending the dedication, which party lay at the Junction from nine o'clock in the morning until ten at night, unable to get a step farther. Not a train was run over the Hanover road during that time, and this the pilgrims, after coming six hundred miles to see the battlefield, were defeated in their enterprise on the last twenty-five miles. It is a matter of wonder that, with such timely notice, this road failed to make proper arrangements, and suffered the spirit of mismanagement to paralyze its workings.

Atlanta, Georgia, Railroad Yard

Ironic, isn't it??? Along with two car loads of Rebel prisoners, Federal troops prepare to evacuate Atlanta with a brand new fire pumping wagon, a hose wagon and a hand pumping unit. Oh, how these could have been used to save the city! George N. Barnard, official photographer of the Chief Engineer's Office captured many scenes US Army activities in the city before it was destroyed.

From the Center for Civil War Photography, on Face Book

The Leviathan, York's own Locomotive

Dave Kloke plans to build a replica of President Lincoln's funeral train for the 150th anniversary in 2015, according to Kloke Locomotive Works' web site.

The train traveled from Washington, D.C. to Springfield, Ill., and the plan is to recreate that trip for the anniversary.

Lincoln's funeral car passed through York County on the Northern Central Railway.

Steam Into History Inc. hopes to bring the funeral car to York County in two years and do a special event with it, said Robert Gotwols, chief operating officer for the organization.

For more information, visit http://www.leviathan63.com/index.html


A Walk Through Savannah's Civil War: Railroads


By Richard Burkhart 

The Central of Georgia Railroad and Banking Company brought economic growth to Savannah by transporting cotton from the heart of the state to be shipped from the Port of Savannah.

During the Civil War, however, the role of the railroad began to change. With port shipments effectively cut off by the Union blockade, the transportation needs changed. Troops, supplies, artillery and prisoners of war were moved through Georgia by way of the railroads.

Continue reading at SavannahNow