Baltimore and Ohio 4600, a Class Q-4b Mikado (2-8-2) is sitting in the Cumberland, MD, yard with a full coal bunker on January 13, 1956. From its appearance, it may be just out of the Cumberland Shops. After an engine was shopped at Cumberland, they would send it on a local freight with substantial tonnage over Sand Patch. If there was a problem after rebuilding, this was the ultimate test. If it performed satisfactorily on Sand Patch, it was ready for service.
Locomotives and locations featured in the 2022 edition include:
Baltimore and Ohio 6209, a Class S-1a (2-10-2) built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1926, is seen here on an eastbound freight near Meyersdale, PA, a short four miles west of the summit of Sand Patch on November 7, 1950. Baltimore and Ohio owned 125 Santa Fe-type locomotives, referred to as “Big Sixes” by their crews. These locomotives showed up almost anywhere from time to time, but many of them spent a good deal of their service lives in freight helper service. By 1959, all were off the roster.
Baltimore and Ohio 5236, a Class P-6a Pacific (4-6-2), leads Train #252 eastbound out of Sykesville, PA, on November 11, 1954. 5236 was one of 12 engines constructed by the Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1922; they were designed for passenger service and several of them lasted well into the 1950’s.
Baltimore and Ohio 7619, a Class EM-1 Yellowstone (2-8-8-4), is running light westbound at Sand Patch, PA, on April 21, 1954. 7619 has been assigned to helper service; it has been turned on the Sand Patch wye and will return to Connellsville to help another eastbound train up the hill.
Baltimore and Ohio 943, an EMD F7A-B-A set, is running westbound with a freight several miles west of Hyndman, PA, on May 6, 1952. Sand Patch is the route through and over the Allegheny mountains. The grade on the east side is one of the steepest grades on any railroad in the eastern United States. Hyndman, at the foot of the eastern grade has an elevation of 1,000 feet above sea level. The “Summit of the Alleghenys” sign shows the Sand Patch summit at 2,258 feet in a little over nineteen miles, with the grade approaching and even passing two percent. Also, one curve after another top to bottom puts a lot of additional drag on a train. Fortunately, the west side of the hill is not as steep. Yesterday’s steam or today’s diesel, Sand Patch is one tough piece of railroad.
Baltimore and Ohio 3503, an EMD Model GP-35 leads three other units on a westbound freight at Willow Valley, IN, on June 4, 1971. 3503 is a 2,500-horsepower, off-the-shelf EMD model GP-35, built in 1964. The trailing three units in this image are all 2,000 horsepower EMD model GP38s, also right off the shelf. These engines were built in the late 1960’s.
Baltimore and Ohio 524, a Big Six 2-10-2, is on a freight at Massilon, OH, easing up to the water tank there in the early summer of 1957. B&O needed to change lots of engine numbers in 1956 in order to build solid blocks of numbers for newly arriving diesels.
Baltimore and Ohio 6144, a Class S-1 (2-10-2), and 5571, a Class T-3b Mountain (4-8-2), are on a double-headed, westbound premier freight coming through Corriganville, MD, on August 25, 1954. Corriganville is small town a few miles northwest of Cumberland.
Baltimore and Ohio 5314 is one of 20 locomotives built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1927. Originally painted green, each one was named after a United States president. 5314 was called the “James Buchanan.” Several were the subject of short-lived experiments by B&O’s Mount Clare Shops. Eventually the color scheme and the names were dropped and they were assigned a different class. As a result, 5314 became a Class P7d. It is seen here at Cincinnati, OH, on September 27, 1948. The last one was scrapped in 1958.
Baltimore and Ohio’s eastbound Train #6, the Capitol Limited rolls into Grafton, WV, on October 16, 1954. At the same time, a westbound freight led by 863 is moving out of the yard. 863 is a Baldwin Locomotive Works RF-16A; the name “Shark” stuck because of their appearance. B&O owned sixteen A Units and seven B Units. These locomotives were not a big success because they experienced mechanical problems.
Baltimore and Ohio 1457 (Model E8A) and 1426 (E7A) are being serviced at the Kentucky and Indiana Terminal Yard, Louisville, KY, on November 26, 1960. Both of these locomotives were manufactured by EMD: 1457 in 1953 and 1426 in 1945.
The first of Baltimore and Ohio’s EM-1 Class, 7600, is being serviced at Cumberland, MD, for a passenger special called “Farewell to Steam”. The group that sponsored the trip had asked for 7600, and the B&O obliged. Master photographer Bill Price was on hand to cover the event, which occurred on September 23, 1956. Bill said later that he thought that this was the last revenue trip of an EM-1 to Cumberland.