Model of Philadelphia & Reading Railroad Steam Locomotive #408

<< >>
Description
This is a 1/2-inch model of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad No. 408, built in 1877.
In the late 1850s, the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad was one of the first major U.S. railroads to switch from wood-burning to coal-fired locomotives. A coal-hauling line, the Philadelphia and Reading had access to vast quantities of culm, a pebble-sized anthracite coal considered waste at the mines. However, culm was too fine to be successfully burned in an ordinary locomotive firebox. Looking to reduce fuel costs, John E. Wootten, general manager of the Philadelphia and Reading, designed a wide, shallow firebox capable of burning the cheap coal. Engine No. 408, completed by the Reading Shops in January 1877, was the first engine fitted with Wootten’s firebox. The design proved successful, and nearly all lines using anthracite for fuel adopted it.
Typically, a steam locomotive’s cab was fitted above or behind the firebox. Wootten’s firebox, however, was so large that a cab could not fit over it. Instead, the cab was moved in front of the firebox. Engines with centrally located cabs, like the 408, were called “Camelbacks” or “Mother Hubbards.”
Location
Currently on loan
date made
1965
used date
1877
maker
Severn-Lamb Ltd.
maker
United Kingdom: England, Stratford-upon-Avon
Associated Place
United States: Pennsylvania
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
wood (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 7 1/8 in x 9 3/4 in x 26 in; 18.0975 cm x 24.765 cm x 66.04 cm
ID Number
TR.326277
catalog number
326277
accession number
258718
subject
Locomotives
Railroads
See more items in
Work and Industry: Transportation, Railroad
America on the Move
Transportation
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Comments

Add a comment about this object