Albuquerque steam group looking to put roof over its head

RELATED TOPICS: STEAM/PRESERVATION
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2926
No. 2926 on display at a September 2015 event.
William P. Diven
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – After many years of being outdoors in the elements, the group that owns former Santa Fe 4-8-4 No. 2926 is looking to house and protect its engine. The New Mexico Steam Locomotive & Railroad Historical Society recently started an Internet fundraising campaign to help build an engine house. The group received Trains Magazine’s 2014 Preservation Award and now has begun the Great Engine House Challenge on Gofundme.com. During the fundraiser for every dollar raised up to $100,000 will be matched by an anonymous donor.

According to NMSL&RHS President Michael Hartshorne, the decision to raise money via the Internet was to reach a wide audience. He said that the website doesn’t establish a deadline to raise funds, but does take seven percent of money raised. The group is currently working outdoors with only shipping containers to house machining tools and storage of parts. Rick Kirby, the CMO for the NMSL&RHS, said that an engine house would help protect the group’s assets from thieves and vandals.

“All told, we spent hundreds of dollars for materials, travel expenses and many labor hours engineering, fitting and welding various missing parts,” Kirby says.
Since the tender was defaced by graffiti vandals several years ago and scrapers stealing hundreds of pounds of steel parts, a $7,000 security system was installed.
The planned engine house will be built at the group’s current work site and will be made of steel with concrete footers.

Kirby said that he anticipates that the engine will have its first steam-up sometime next spring. Work is still being done on the electrical system, brake stand, lubrication system and the superheater assemblies are finished and ready for installation.

To make a contribution, go to www.gofundme.com/SantaFe2926.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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