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Discussion Starter #1
Since there have been a few threads on here lately about full-sized steam, I thought I'd throw in a shameless plug for a project that I am involved with...




Four Norfolk & Western steam locomotives, a pair of Baldwin DS-4-4-660 diesels, and a couple of spare steam locomotive tenders converted to water canteen cars have been languishing in a Roanoke, Virginia scrap yard for many years. The steamers (W2 class 2-8-0 no. 917, M2 class 4-8-0's nos. 1118, 1134, and M2c class 4-8-0 no. 1151) arrived there for scrapping in 1950, at a time when the N&W was still building new steam locomotives! Miraculously, they have survived these many decades, but time is running out. The Virginia Scrap Iron & Metal yard where they sit has been sold to the Roanoke Redevelopment & Housing Authority who are overseeing the environmental cleanup, then the property will be turned over to the Carilion Clinic who plan to build a new medical research facility on the site. The 2-8-0 was rescued earlier this year and went to a new home in Bellville, Ohio for display outside what is planned to be a new railroad-themed diner. The rest of the equipment has been offered to the Virginia Museum of Transportation, with a deadline of December 31 of this year to get it all out of there. Unfortunately, the VMT does not have the funds to move the equipment, and is only really interested in one of the steam locomotives (M2c no. 1151 which was built in Roanoke) and one of the diesels. They are looking for somebody to donate the complete move, as cash donations will simply go into their operating fund. It is up to other organizations to come forward and rescue the rest of the locomotives, and facilitate the removal of all of the equipment from the yard.


I've been following the saga of these engines for about 11 years now, when I started a website about them, The Lost Engines of Roanoke. About 5 years ago, a group of people came together via the website and formed The Western Virginia Railroad Preservation Society (TWVRPS). We have launched a fundraising campaign to try to rescue as much of the remaining equipment as possible, particularly N&W 1118 which is the most intact of the steam locomotives in the yard, as well as to help the VMT collect the pieces that they want. What can be saved will depend on the amount we are able to raise before the December 31 deadline. The cost of moving the locomotives is estimated to be about $50,000 each. We have been given permission to store the locomotives we are able to save at the C&O Historical Society's museum yard in Clifton Forge, Virginia. If you are interested in helping us to save these remarkable survivors of the steam era, please visit lostengines.railfan.net or www.twvrps.org for more information.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the suggestions. The problem right now isn't so much finding a place to move them to, it's raising the money to move them from the scrapyard. It's very likely that they will be scrapped if they can't be moved by the December 31 deadline. Of course it would be sad to see any steam locomotive scrapped in this day and age, but especially so with these as they are the last survivors of their type. The M2's were built by Baldwin in 1910, and the similar M2c class were built by the Roanoke shops in 1911. They were the heaviest 4-8-0's ever built. A pair of the smaller M class 4-8-0's are preserved, including the 475 which also spent time in this same scrapyard before being rescued in the 1960's, and now operates on the Strasburg Railroad.
 
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