Welcome to Richard Leonard’s Rail Archive, a collection of rail-related web sites I have been developing since 1998 beginning with the Steam Locomotive Archive. Here you will find more than 1800 images of steam, diesel, and electric locomotives and other items of historic North American railroad interest, plus plenty of detail and commentary about the items presented. Click on the image or the page title to visit the sites that interest you. Click this link for a list of recent additions and updates to this Rail Archive.

My photos, with commentary, of steam locomotives operating in the 1950s. Railroads include the CB&Q, CPR, GTW, IC, NKP, NYC, UP, and a page for miscellaneous railroads. Also included are a few nonsteam rarities, plus a page of links to other steam-related sites.

A collection of New York Central System locomotive photos. Many of the steam photos come from the 1930s-1940s, and others I took in the 1950s. The Diesel collection includes photos from the 1950s by me and my brother. The Fantasy Steam collection presents imaginary NYC steam.

Miscellaneous steam locomotive photos from the U.S. and Canada. Many have been contributed by viewers of this Rail Archive, and in some cases the photographers and locations are unknown. There is a good representation of B&O, B&M, C&O, CB&Q, CNR, CPR, GTW, IC and PRR steam power.

A gallery of photos of the famous Union Pacific 4-8-8-4 Big Boys and 4-6-6-4 Challengers, mostly taken in 1957 in Wyoming and Nebraska. Eleven of the Big Boys are shown, and eight Challengers including the surviving 3985 in actual service. A few 800-series Northerns appear, as well.

Photos my brother, the late David V. Leonard, took on several trips to Michigan and Ontario in 1958 in search of late steam. The gallery contains a good representation of CNR-GTW system power, from Consolidations and Mikados through Pacifics, Mountains and three classes of 4-8-4s.

A 1950s-1960s look at the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio’s former Alton Route, featuring main line passenger trains, the Bloomington yard and shops, a motor train ride to Jacksonville, and a cab ride to Chicago in the Abraham Lincoln. There's even a page on Alton Route steam.

Locomotives you never heard of, or saw, because they never existed: the Southern Railway streamlined 4-4-4-4 duplex, the Pennsylvania Railroad’s class P-6 4-6-4, the Monon 4-10-4, the Santa Fe 4-6-4 in “War Bonnet” paint, the famous Erie 2-6-6-6-6-2 Quadruplex, and more!

A collection of miscellaneous electric rail inages available to me. Coverage is not comprehensive, but includes electric power on the Pennsylvania, Iowa Terminal, South Shore, and New York Central, plus interurban cars and other power now preserved in museums.

A collection of diesel photos from the 1940s-1970s featuring unusual models like the Baldwin "baby face," the ALCo C415, the GE U50, and rare EMD units like the BL2 and SDL39, plus the "usual suspects" — EMD cab units and Geeps, ALCo RS units and a scattering from other builders.

Images, both black-and-white photos and color transparencies, of the Union Pacific's first- and second-generation gas turbine-electric locomotives operating at Laramie, Wyoming in August 1957, plus a view of the third-generation locomotive now at the Illinois Railway Museum.

Locomotive and industrial images scanned from two booklets distributed by The Pilliod Company of Swanton, Ohio, a sales booklet (around 1915) and a spare parts catalog (around 1926). Motive power ranges from switchers through 4-8-2’s and a 2-6-6-2 Mallet, plus the famous Erie Triplex.

A course in locomotive firing published by the Education Department of the State of New York in 1944. This 152-page manual contains illustrations of steam locomotive appliances, with instructions for operating them.

A 24-page booklet produced by the Pennsylvania Railroad around 1949. It features the railroad’s new diesel locomotives, the GG1 and P5a electrics, and its most modern or representative steam types — the T1 and Q2 duplexes, the S2 direct-drive turbine, the J1 2-10-4 and the K4s 4-6-2.

A 42-page booklet issued by the Westinghouse Electric Corporation, describing the characteristics and prospects for a variety of motive power types. In addition to standard steam, diesel and electric locomotives the booklet describes steam turbine (geared and electric) and gas turbine motive power.

A 20-page bulletin issued in November 1913 by the American Locomotive Company to promote the 4-6-2 or Pacific type. Illustrations and specifications appear for 42 orders of Pacifics from North American railroads.

A New York Central folder describing localities and features along the main line between Buffalo and New York City, issued in 1948, and a Boston & Albany booklet depicting features between Albany and Boston, issued in the early 20th century.

A Brief History of the Chicago and North Western Line, a 20-page booklet published by the railroad in 1942. It includes pictures and specifications for the North Western’s steam locomotive fleet at the time, with a few early diesels including the “Overland Route” Streamliners.

Images scanned from The Midland Story, a 48-page publicity booklet issued by the Chicago & Illinois Midland Railway around 1954. The booklet features pictures of railroad right of way, stations, facilities, rolling stock and locomotives, and a map.

Images of historic and modern locomotives from the Chicago World’s Fair “A Century of Progress” Exposition of 1933-1934, most of them photographed by members of the family of Cecil A. Wickham of Michigan City, Indiana.

Guide Books for the Chicago Railroad Fair, 1948 and 1949, plus photos by Emma June Bangert, Lyman Humphrey, John J. Becht, Roderick O'Connor, Paul F. Thompson, Harry G. Preece, and others. The Guide Books include the program for the “Wheels-a-Rolling” pageant.

More than 500 of my railroad images, with some by my brother, are presented in the North American Railroad Photo Archive. Some are alternate views of subjects in this Rail Archive, others are subjects that don’t fit here (many have since been added). This link goes directly to my photos.

Some spare railroad paper items and a few other things I have for sale. Items include employees’ timetables, railroad maps (tubed and folded), magazines, miscellaneous booklets, pamphlets and other items.

This site describes the project to preserve the Keokuk Union Depot, now owned by the City of Keokuk, Iowa. Text and photos relate to the history of the depot, erected in 1891; passenger service by the participating railroads; and ongoing preservation efforts.

The National Railway Historical Society encourages interest in rail transportation, and education about the nationís railway heritage. It supports preservation projects, maintains photographic and historical archives, and sponsors events related to the history of North American railroads.

Our author site describes books and other items we have published or written, and includes our blog “Considered Opinion.” Also visit our ministry site, Laudemont Ministries, and our poetry magazine, WestWard Quarterly.

The REA is made up of active and former railroaders, and railroad fans, who are committed to Christian witness. The Association publishes Railroad Evangelist magazine three times a year. It is connected with similar groups in Europe and India that make up RailHope International.