West Virginia Northern 2-8-0s #9 and #8
We have purchased two Baldwin Consolidation type (2-8-0) steam locomotives from the Leap family of Hyndman, Pa. The locomotives were manufactured in 1904 and 1906 for the West Virginia Northern Railroad that was based in Kingwood. The steam engines later served on the Preston Railroad before their retirement in the 1960's.While they have been sitting in the woods for the last 30+ years, our goal is to rebuild them and have them running in the next couple of years. Once in running condition, the plan is to lease them to the nearby West Virginia Central Railroad to allow people to see these pieces of history actually running on the rails making money for other museum projects. Unlike many other musuems, these locos will not just be part of a static exhibit.
Volunteers worked for several weeks to prep the locomotives for the big move. This included clearing and stabilizing track that had been untouched for years. Additional track had to be laid to move the locomotives across a small bridge before the cranes could pick them up. The crew spent many days in PA stripping the locomotives of parts to reduce the weight.
The steam engines and tenders were transported from Pennsylvania back to West Virginia for restoration on Nov. 17-18, 2005. WVN No. 9, built in 1906, is to be put into running operation while No. 8, built 1904, still needs to be assessed to determine the restoration potential.
On November 19, 2005, the two Baldwin locomotives were offloaded from low boy trailers onto the rails of the West Virginia Central Railroad at Belington, WV.
The project has been a major push for several years now for the Museum and funds still must be raised to complete the rebuilding efforts.
On May 22, 2006, the first major step of the restoration started with the boiler inspection.
Serious volunteer work started on October 14, 2006. As of October 2007 the flues have been removed, the boiler cleaned, all appliances and piping have been removed, and work has started on the tender. The tender tank and cab have been removed, cleaned, and painted.
In mid-2009, the boiler/frame was lifted off the drivers and shipped off to Sisterville for a repair to the firebox and new flues. The wheels will be sent off for turning.
Volunteer and financial help will be needed for the restoration. We need to 'get it done' so click here to see how you can help.