Saturday, July 27, 2019

Big Boy

The world's largest operating steam locomotive made its way through the Chicago suburbs on Friday and was on display today in West Chicago.  Despite the temperature and higher than normal humidity today there was quite a large crowd there to see it. 

The 133-foot-long Big Boy No. 4014 is part of Union Pacific's tour to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the First Transcontinental Railroad.
The massive train was taken off the tracks on Friday and put on display on the other side of the railroad at the Larry S. Provo Training Center.

Only 25 of these massive Big Boys trains were built. No. 4014, which was delivered to Union Pacific in 1941, was retired in 1961 and later restored to make trips around the country
The train is one of only eight Big Boys still in existence today, and is the only one still operating.

It took Union Pacific five years to restore the world's largest steam locomotive, which dates back to the 1940s.
 Here's a news article with a great video of it arriving.  We were both working when it rolled in so we missed it but the display out in West Chicago is open all weekend.

You can track the Big Boy's route here.


  1. A fellow blogger and I went up to "Tie Siding" Wyoming to see it pass on it's way to the Cheyenne RR museum. Much quieter than I thought it would, and very majestic passing by.

  2. Oh, I'm so glad you got to see it!!

  3. When I was in 8th Grade the Sacramento Railroad museum was opening and to celebrate several engines such as this either were delivered there or came for the kickoff. I remember seeing a steam locomotive on its way, they way that had come through the Sierras 100 years and more earlier. It was a stirring sight and a makes a lovely memory.

  4. Johnny Cash had it right about trains all along.

    They were SERIOUS transportation, unlike these flitty little things that just hop from airport to airport, never really knowing where the next stop is.


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