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Alaska Life

Restoring Engine 557: Work continues on last steam locomotive to run with the Alaska Railroad

  • Author: Bill Roth
  • Updated: November 3, 2017
  • Published November 2, 2017

Engine 557, an S160 class 2-8-0 consolidation steam locomotive, has come a long way since it first arrived in Alaska in December 1944.

The steam locomotive served in the U.S. Army Transportation Corps during World War II and later with the Alaska Railroad. It was then sold in 1964 to a scrap dealer from Moses Lake, Washington.

The steam locomotive was returned to Alaska in 2012 and is about two years and $180,000 away from being completely restored by volunteers to produce steam again.

"We are in the fifth year of a two-year project. The project can only move forward as funding becomes available," Pat Durand, Engine 557 Restoration Co. president, said Thursday.

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