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Abandoned and Historical Railroads in the Northwest
|This article is a spur of my Longview Portland & Northern - Gardiner Branch Page.
That's the line that this historical locomotive served on for much of it's working life
|Last Update: May 11, 2005
|The LP&N # 111 working the LP&N Gardiner branch sometime in the 1980s.
Photos were taken by and are courtesy of Stan McCollough
|American Locomotive Company (Alco) S-2
Builder Number: 76933
Frame Number: S-3105-08
Build Date: July, 1949
Generator: One GT-553
Traction Motors (4): GE-731
1000 h.p. TURBOCHARGED 539 TYPE DIESEL ENGINE (E-1540)
The ALCO S-2 was built with a single McIntosh & Seymour 539 6 cylinder engine, with cylinders 12 1/2 inches in diameter and a 13 inch
stroke. Normally, this engine is rated at 660 horsepower, but with a turbocharger (as installed on the S-2 series) it develops 1,000
horsepower. The maximum RPM is 740.
|LP&N number 111 was built by ALCO (American Locomotive Company) in July, 1949 at
it’s Schenectady, NY plant. This is one of 1502 ALCO S-2 models produced from April, 1940 through June,
1950. Its first and only operational owner would be the Longview, Portland and Northern Railroad. It's not
clear what other LP&N Divisions the # 111 served early in it's working life, but it serve as least most of it's
later life on the LP&N Gardiner Division.
The LP&N Gardiner Division railroad was constructed around 1952 to connect the Southern Pacific Coos Bay
Branch to a saw mill in the Oregon coastal town of Gardiner, just north of Reedsport, Oregon. Sometime in
the 1960s, the International Paper Mill was constructed just north of the saw mill. This kept the several miles
long connecting railroad busy, interchanging mill cars with the Southern Pacific.
Number 111, shared it’s duties at Gardiner with at least two other locomotives in it’s working history,
including number 1002, a Baldwin VO-660, which was scrapped by 1975, and number 130, an EMD SW1500.
During the 1980s and 1990s, number 130 and 111 were the only two locomotives used on the Gardiner
By the early 1990s, the saw mill located south of the paper mill was closed and within a few years, it was torn
down. This reduced traffic on the branch to only the International Paper mill, but by 1999, that mill was closed
down too, ending the need for the LP&N railroad forever.
Number 130 was sold to BDLX (BDL Company) and began to serve at a Dow Chemicals plant in Taft, Louisiana.
It’s current status is unknown.
Number 111, was taken out of service by the LP&N and remained in storage at the Gardiner engine shops for
several years. International Paper, which owned the LP&N, decided to donate the locomotive to the Oregon
Coast Historical Railroad, which is a small railroad historical organization based out of nearby Coos Bay, that
was restoring a steam engine for static display in that town. The club does not operate a railroad, but plans
to publicly display the number 111, along side its Coos Bay Lumber # 104 steam engine. Sometime around
2003, the number 111, was painted in new blue and orange colors and remained stored in the Gardiner
locomotive shops. In November, 2004, International Paper announced the mill would permanently close,
probably be torn down and the property sold off. The OCHR was told to move the number 111 from the
locomotive shops so that IP could prepare to tear them down as well. On December 22, 2004, the number
111, moved again for the first time in several years, but not under its own power.
Number 111 was inoperable at the time and a backhoe was loaned by IP to push the locomotive out of the
shops and about halfway down the LP&N track to Bolon Island. That’s where American Bridge Company has a
brand new manufacturing facility and has recently begun to use a short section of the ex-LP&N railroad to
receive and ship items, via the Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad. This is where I spotted # 111 and took the
below photos of it. The number 111 will be stored here for at least several months, until the OCHR can get it
moved down the Central Oregon & Pacific (formerly Southern Pacific) track into Coos Bay where it will go on
|Photos by Brian McCamish, unless otherwise indicated
|In late January 2005, Shane Gill, my father in law Bill Marks and myself visited the site where # 111 is currently being stored. One
month prior, the # 111 was removed from the ex-LP&N locomotive shops in Gardiner, and pushed about half way down the LP&N line by
a backhoe to this location. Here it will sit on the tracks for at least several months until OCHR can figure out how to transport it to Coos
Bay for static display. While it could be made to run, the # 111 has not run for several years and it will most likely be towed to it's
future home. The line north of here is abandoned, but just south of here (behind the locomotive) the rails are being used once again by
the newly built American Bridge to ship parts to and from it's facility via the Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad. In the far right photo,
you can see some of the American Bridge flat cars sitting behind the # 111.
|The colors you see here were painted onto the locomotive in the last year or so. This is not the colors it wore while serving the LP&N.
Apparently, the Oregon Coast Historical Railroad, considers blue and orange to be it's club colors and that's why # 111 was painted
that way. The OCHR decided to retain the numbering, 111, and lettering on the locomotive indicates that it was donated by
International Paper and the Longview Portland & Northern Railroad. However, it's new owners proudly display their lettering and logo.
|The Alco S-2 was painted professionally and it does
look pretty good. I imagine further cosmetic work
will be done after it's moved to it's new home in Coos
Bay. It will eventually be placed under cover.
|The top of the hood is currently painted in bright orange.
The LP&N hood color was black so as not to blind the
crew, but this engine will not see service. On the left, the
diesel smoke stack. On the right, the sand filler door,
directly in front of the cab for the rear truck. Thanks to
J. Radtke for the correction. I had mislabed this as the fuel
|Here you see the trucks and traction motors. It's the trucks that distinguish an S-2 from an S-4. The S-2 uses Blunt trucks while the
S-4 is basically an S-2 with AAR trucks. The Alco S-2 has four GE-731 traction motors, two per truck. The device in the far right picture
that is touching the wheel, is a flange lubricator. Thanks to Will Pickering for the info.
|Photo on the left shows the front coupler, recently painted. Photo on the right shows a spare coupler, carried by most
locomotives. In this case, attached to the port side battery box.
|The twin air tanks are located in
between the portside battery box and
the starboard side tool box. The fuel
tank is located directly under the
cab, I believe.
|Inside the port side battery box.
Obviously empty of batteries, since
it's not currently operational.
|One of the main bearings. It seemed
to have more water than lubrication,
|Inside the cab, as viewed through the windows. The OCHR indicated that they've restored the # 111 both inside and out. The cab is
fairly clean, but not quite pristine. I'm not sure how far they plan to go. Note the forward, side and rear visibility out of the cab is not
bad with this model.
|The roof of the cab, along with
the flooring appears to be made
of wood. Reminiscent of the
steam locomotives which were
still in production when this
locomotive was built in 1949.
|The fireman/conductors view.
Note the large brake wheel at
the rear of the cab. This
appears to only control the
brakes on the rear truck.
|The fireman/conductors view of
the engineer's control stand.
|More Historical Photos
|These photos were taken at Longview, Washington by Dan Davis in the 1970s and show that during that time,
number 111 served at the Northern Division of the LP&N. Courtesy Dan Davis.
My LP&N Gardiner Branch Article (The owner of this locomotive)
My Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad Article (interchanged with the LP&N when it operated)
The Oregon Coast Historical Railroad number 111 Website
The Engineer's Manual to operate the Alco S-2. Lots of interesting pics and info on the Alco S-2 Locomotive
|If anyone has any further information or pictures about the Longview Portland and Northern Gardiner branch, especially past pictures,
please let me know. Any pictures and info including current would be appreciated. You can Email me anytime. Thanks.
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|Copyright © 2004, 2005 Brian McCamish, All Rights Reserved
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