overall: 12 in x 8 in x 43 in; 30.48 cm x 20.32 cm x 109.22 cm
Locomotive, No. 1173, 1926; Rail; Electric
United States: New York
This is a model of the New York Central Railroad’s No. 1173, an electric locomotive built in 1926.
In the late nineteenth century, the hundreds of steam locomotives visiting New York City’s Grand Central Station each day exhausted noxious fumes into the city. In an effort to reduce noise and air pollution, the tracks leading to the station were lowered beneath the streets. Now, however, the smoke became trapped inside the tunnels, which obscured engineers’ vision of the tracks ahead. On January 8, 1902, a New York Central train travelling through the smoke filled Park Avenue Tunnel ran through a signal and slammed into the rear of another train, killing fifteen. In response to the resulting public outcry, the New York legislature banned steam locomotives from Manhattan. By 1913, the New York Central had electrified the thirty-three miles of its mainline from Grand Central to Croton-Harmon, New York. At Croton-Harmon, the electric engine was cut off and a steam locomotive hauled the train onward.
No. 1173 is one of the New York Central’s T class locomotives, which were built by General Electric in Erie, PA. These engines pulled passenger trains between Grand Central and Croton-Harmon.