The museum is open Fridays through Tuesdays 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free timed-entry passes are required. Review our latest visitor safety guidelines.

Plantation Locomotive, Olomana

Plantation Locomotive, Olomana

Usage conditions apply
Downloads
Description
The Olomana was built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works, Philadelphia, for the Waimanolo Sugar Company of Oahu, then part of the Kindom of Hawaii. It was the third locomotive to arrive on the island and was originally named the Puaalii. This narrow gauge tank engine worked for 62 seasons, pulling cars of sugar cane from the fields to the processing plant located in northeastern Oahu. During this time few mechanical changes were made; however, the boiler was replaced twice and the fuel was changed from coal to oil in 1928.
During its service life the Olomana hauled or pushed small four wheel cars piled with sugar cane. The sticky juice from the cane lubricated the tracks so that extra sand was needed to improve the engine's traction. The Olomana and other two locomotives were outfitted with extra sand boxes during their service. Traction, not speed, was the Olomana's chief concern. She was designed for slow speed pulling, with 20 mph an optimum, and normal running speeds far below that pace.
The Olomana was retired in 1944 when the 'sugar railroad' was abandoned in favor of motor trucks. Four years later the engine was purchased by Gerald M. Best of California. Mr. Best and his wife, Harriet B. Best, restored the engine and operated it on a private railroad in Los Angeles area before presenting it to the Smithsonian in 1977.
Location
Currently on loan
Object Name
Plantation Locomotive
locomotive, plantation
locomotive
locomotive, full size
Date made
1883
used date
1883-1944
user
Waimanalo Sugar Company
maker
Baldwin Locomotive Works
Place Made
United States: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
used
United States: Hawaii, Oahu
Physical Description
iron (overall material)
steel (overall material)
brass (overall material)
copper (overall material)
wood (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 106 in x 70 in x 232 1/4 in; 269.24 cm x 177.8 cm x 589.915 cm
ID Number
TR.336162
accession number
1977.0647
catalog number
336162
Credit Line
Gift of Gerald M. and Harriet B. Best
subject
Railroads
See more items in
Work and Industry: Transportation, Railroad
America on the Move
Transportation
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.

Comments

Add a comment about this object