Historic Locomotive Coming Back to Life and Moving to Cumberland

- BALTIMORE, Md. - It's been more than 50 years since this locomotive has chugged its way down the rails, but soon that will change.

Thanks to a partnership between the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore and Western Maryland Scenic Railroad in Cumberland, a C&O 1309 is being brought back to life.

"Unfortunately the weather hasn't been kind to it and it was one of those locomotives in the terms of our priorities that we have in our restoration operation that we were not going to get to anytime soon," said Dave Shackelford, chief curator of the B&O Railroad Museum. "So this was a wonderful chance for us to again partner and save a piece of railroad history."

Shackelford said this locomotive was the last of its kind built for the C&O Railway in 1949 and was in service for about seven years.

Although the engine was built many years ago, the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad says, it's part of its future.

"We are a steam operation and if we don't have a steam locomotive operating, it really cuts down into our business, because that's really what people come to see for us. They love to see the steam, the old steam whistles, they love to see hear the sounds of the locomotive," said Michael Gresham, general superintendent for the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad.

The process begins with the transfer of this powerful locomotive from Baltimore to Cumberland.

"So what's going to happen is it's going to our restoration facility and it's going to be disassembled and loaded onto flatcars and carried out by CSX out to western Maryland," said Shackelford.

Gresham says he hopes to have the historic locomotive running by 2016, as it will power some of its heaviest trains from Cumberland to Frostburg.

"When it's complete you will be able to see big steam running on the eastern seaboard again and its going to be awesome," said Shackelford,

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