WMSR Consolidation #734
Nicknamed: “Mountain Thunder”, #734 began her life in 1916 as #34 hauling Iron Ore for the Lake Superior & Ishpeming. She was retired in 1951 and later sold to the Marquette & Huron Mountain RR in 1963, later being sold to the Illinois Railroad Museum in 1967. She sat outside on display until 1991 when the newly formed Western Maryland Scenic purchased #34 and restored her to operation, reappearing as a Western Maryland H Class #734. Her tender was replaced with a larger (6) wheel truck tender originally from NYC 4-8-2 #2662, which had a mechanical stoker motor, something the original tender never had. Sitting on 56” drivers and operation at 198psi, she produces 69,500lb of tractive effort. Providing enough power to pull (7) cars unassisted up the 2-3% grade. In early 2016 after celebrating her 100th birthday, #734 was placed on indefinite leave from operation until her mandatory 1472-day inspection can be completed.
Today: None of the actual Western Maryland’s 2-8-0 Consolidations were saved. Only (3) LS&I 2-8-0 Heavy Consolidations exist today:
#33 was restored and ran on the Hocking Valley Scenic and is stored serviceable at the Age of Steam Roundhouse in Sugar Creek, OH
#34 is awaiting the completion of C&O 1309’s restoration, and for the funds for a full restoration at the Western Maryland Scenic RR in Ridgley, WV
#35 is on display at the Illinois Railway Museum in Union, IL
WMSR #734 set includes: Engine, Tender and (5) WMSR Excursion cars
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