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Southern Railway  Search this
American Locomotive Company. Richmond Works  Search this
Physical Description:
bronze (overall material)
steel (overall material)
green (overall color)
overall: 15 ft x 10 ft x 92 ft; 4.572 m x 3.048 m x 28.0416 m
Object Name:
locomotive, steam
locomotive, passenger
locomotive, full size
Place Made:
United States: Virginia, Richmond
Date made:
The 4-6-2 "Pacific" type steam locomotive for passenger trains was introduced late in the 19th century and perfected after 1910. It was among the most numerous type of steam locomotive for passenger trains operated in the United States from about 1910 to 1955. This type was characterized by four leading or "pilot" wheels, arranged in a "truck" to guide the locomotive in curves; 6 large-diameter driving wheels for power and speed; and a pair of "trailing wheels" in a "trailing truck" under the rear of the engine to help support its great weight.
Far from ordinary, the Class Ps-4-type steam locomotives of the Southern Railway were inspired by handsomely painted British locomotives. The Ps-4's green and gold livery set these locomotives apart from the funereal black associated with most American steam locomotives in the 20th century. The distinctive green was exclusive to locomotives on the Southern Railway that were assigned to the company's principal passenger trains, such as the Crescent Limited, the Piedmont Limited, and others.
The Charlotte Division was part of the Southern's Washington–Atlanta mainline, with extension of the mainline to Birmingham and New Orleans on track leased by Southern. The Charlotte Division included the line between Greenville, S.C., and Salisbury/Spencer, N.C. Thus the 1401 rarely, if ever, ran north of Spencer, home of the Southern's vast Spencer Shops for the heavy repair of locomotives from throughout the system.
A Ps-4 was capable of hauling 12–15 steel passenger cars, about 700–1000 tons, at 80 mph on level track. (The hill-and-dale profile of the Charlotte Division, however, kept average speeds to about 50–60 mph.) The 14,000 gallons of water in the tender permitted runs of about 150 miles—the full length of the Division—between water stops, although there would be one intermediate water stop normally scheduled. Fuel (16 tons of bituminous coal) in the tender was good for the full 150 miles.
Railroads  Search this
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Work and Industry: Transportation, Railroad
America on the Move
America On The Move
Exhibition Location:
National Museum of American History
Data Source:
National Museum of American History