C&O Berkshire #2765
In the first 28 years of the Collis P. Huntington Chapter of the NRHS’ sponsored New River trains, many different locomotives, both steam and diesel, powered the trips, but only 1 of the steam engines was actually a C&O locomotive, #614. Two other steam engines bearing the markings of the C&O have graced the rails of the Hinton Division. Reading T1 2101 dressed up in Chessie System colors for the Chessie Steam Special in 1977 and 1978 was one…and the other wasn’t so extravagant….at least at first it wasn’t.
In early 1993, a simple idea was tossed around of adding a 2 to the NKP 765, giving her an authentic C&O Kanawha running number for the annual New River Trips coming up that October. That simple idea grew to maybe reletting the tender. Eventually it was decided to lower the headlight, add a radiator cover in-between the front air compressors, and add C&O to the sand dome. With the exceptions of the sand dome and steam domes being reverse, not having a cast pilot and the larger cab, the 765 took on the appearance of a C&O K-4 Kanawha. And thus, the 2765 was re-born.
From June through October of 1993, the 2765 heading many excursions throughout Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Tennessee, and finally the 2 weekends of annual New River Trips from Huntington to Hinton, WV on the old C&O Hinton Division that October. This would not only be the last season that the 765 would power the New River Trips, but the final season of her operation in general. After accumulating 115,000 miles since the NKP’s last major overhaul in the late 1950’s (52,000 miles of that since her restoration to excursion service in 1979), the 765 was showing signs of wear and was sidelined for running gear work. Unable to have the engine ready the following year, Milwaukee Road 261 filled in for 765 and pulled the 1994 New River Trains. This turned out to be the final year of steam power on the C&O Hinton division, and on CSX trackage anywhere.
C&O #2765 set includes: Engine, Tender, Aux Tender, Tool Car and (9) CSX Business Cars
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