No. 4501 of class Ms, first of more than 200 Mikado type engines operated by the Southern Railway, was built by Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1911. This class had 63-inch drivers, 27x30-inch cylinders, and 175 p.s.i. of boiler pressure. They developed 47,000 pounds of tractive effort and weighed 248,000 pounds minus tender. In 1948, officials of the Kentucky & Tennessee Railroad found No. 4501 in a scrap line in Princeton, Indiana, and acquired it for service in their coal-hauling operation as the K&T's No. 12.

After the K&T converted to diesel power in 1963, this 2-8-2 was acquired by the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum of Chattanooga. It was restored to its original number and painted in the famous green and gold livery of the Southern Railway's steam passenger fleet. (Freight locomotives wore the standard black during the steam era.) In 1966, when the Southern began running steam locomotives in excursion service, No. 4501 was the first to operate. It continued in this service, transitioning into the Norfolk Southern steam program, until 1998 and was then stored inoperative at the museum. In 2014 the locomotive underwent extensive rebuilding which included the addition of a stoker and feedwater heater, features that had been applied to other Southern 2-8-2s but never to No. 4501. Returning to operation, it ran for a time ran as part of the Norfolk Southern's "21st Century Steam Program." Today, restored to its original black livery, the engine is operative at the museum in Chattanooga.

My late brother David V. Leonard took this transparency during No. 4501's years of excursion service for the Southern, date and location unknown. Note the auxiliary water tank behind the tender. For another view of No. 4501 which I captured, click here.