Look again — it's not one of the Norfolk & Western's famous class J 4-8-4s but their less glamorous cousins, the streamlined 4-8-2s of class K-2. Streamlined 4-8-2s were rare in North America, and the only other examples that come to mind are the Union Pacific's inverted-bathtub-style No. 7002 and the New York Central's similarly shrouded "Rexall Train," L-2c Mohawk No. 2873. (The Canadian National's bullet-nosed U-1-f class would be considered semi-streamlined or "stream-styled," as would the New York, Ontario & Western's Mountaineer 4-8-2.)
The 22 members of Norfolk & Western's K-2 and K-2a classs were streamlined to handle some of the lighter passenger assignments for which the hefty Js would have been a waste of power. Their appearance, as streamliners, was marred by retention of the original rivet-fabricated trailing truck, where a one-piece steel casting of the Delta type would have been more pleasing. But these engines served well. Coming from Baldwin in 1923, No. 135 as rebuilt had 70-inch drivers, 28x30-inch cylinders, and 220 p.s.i. of boiler pressure. She weighed 359,460 pounds and developed 62,832 pounds of tractive effort. Having slightly more than 76 square feet of grate area, the rebuilt K-2s has 4470 square feet of evaporative heating surface and 1085 square feet of superheating surface. The photo, from the collection of my brother David, was taken in Cincinnati in September 1954, but the photographer's identity is unknown.