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U.s locomotive No. 1604 at Swindon Works in December 1942

U.s locomotive No. 1604 at Swindon Works in December 1942


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U.s locomotive No. 1604 at Swindon Works in December 1942

U.S locomotive, No. 1604 is photographed here at Swindon Works in December 1942. Many of the American engines that were shipped to Britain were actually on their way to service on the continent. However, during their stay in Britain the American engines were put into service on the countrys railway networks. The difference between US and Great Western locomotives provided challenges for locomotive crews with the high sided tenders causing issues at coaling stages and the single boiler water gauge leading to several boiler explosions. In total, 174 U.S. 2-8-0 locomotives worked on GW routes, with engine No. 1604 working across the Western network from January 1943 until she was sent overseas in September 1944

STEAM - Museum of the Great Western Railway

Media ID 19938919

Swindon Works World War 2 1604


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> Europe > United Kingdom > England > London > Sights > British Museum

> STEAM Museum of the GWR > Locomotives > Steam

> STEAM Museum of the GWR > The Railway at War > Second World War

> STEAM Museum of the GWR > Swindon Works > Locomotive Works


EDITORS COMMENTS
This print from the STEAM Museum of the GWR takes us back to December 1942, capturing U. S locomotive No. 1604 at Swindon Works during World War II. These American engines were originally intended for service on the continent but found themselves temporarily employed on Britain's railway networks. The differences between these U. S locomotives and their Great Western counterparts presented unique challenges for the crews. With their high-sided tenders, coaling stages became a tricky affair, causing some complications along the way. Additionally, a single boiler water gauge led to several unfortunate boiler explosions. Despite these hurdles, engine No. 1604 proved its mettle across the Western network from January 1943 until it was eventually sent overseas in September 1944. It is fascinating to witness this piece of history frozen in time—a testament to both technological collaboration and adaptation during wartime. This photograph serves as a reminder of how nations came together in times of crisis, sharing resources and expertise for a common cause. As we gaze upon this image, let us appreciate not only the intricate details of this locomotive but also reflect on the immense efforts made by countless individuals who worked tirelessly behind-the-scenes to keep our railways running smoothly amidst global turmoil.

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