ARRT'S    ARRCHIVES



Copyright © JUNE 3, 2005     Arthur John Huneke
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


LONG   ISLAND   RAIL   ROAD   COMPANY

ENGINE   NUMBER   THIRTY   NINE

CLASS   G5s   -   BUILT   1928   JUNIATA   SHOPS



PAGE NEW JUNE 3, 2005




MAY 27,   2005 - NEWSDAY REPORTS THAT TODAY SUFFOLK COUNTY EXECUTIVE STEVE LEVY WILL PRESENT THE RAILROAD MUSEUM OF LONG ISLAND WITH AN $800,000 CHECK FOR THE RESTORATION OF ENGINE 39.

A MAN WHO APPARENTLY RODE BEHIND A STEAM ENGINE AS A CHILD DESCRIBES TRYING TO CATCH CINDERS THROUGH THE OPEN WINDOW.   AT ONE TIME THE WINDOWS HAD SCREENS TO KEEP THE CINDERS OUT BUT THEY WERE REMOVED TO SAVE MONEY - BESIDES, THE DIESELS WERE COMING.   THIS 60 YEAR OLD GENTLEMAN EXPLAINS THAT ENGINE 39 TOOK PASSENGERS FROM LONG ISLAND CITY TO OYSTER BAY PULLING SIX OR SEVEN CARS.   (AND THAT SPRINGS UNDER EACH CAR MADE THE RIDE BUMPY!   IMAGINE THE RIDE WITHOUT SPRINGS!!)

THIS BRINGS TO MIND THE PUBLICATION PUT OUT BY THE L.I.R.R. IN 1959 STATING THAT THE STEAM ENGINES SELDOM PULLED MORE THAN SEVEN OR EIGHT CARS AND AN ANDREW SMITH NEWSDAY ARTICLE A FEW YEARS AGO.   SMITH WAS WRITING ABOUT THE NEGLECTED OYSTER BAY BRANCH AND CLAIMED THAT THE LAST STEAM LOCOMOTIVES WERE RELEGATED TO THE BRANCH, CALLING THEM "LUMBERING STEAM LOCOMOTIVES".

LET'S CLARIFY THE SITUATION.



ENGINE 39 WITH A TEN CAR GREENPORT SPECIAL IN 1955   -   Photo by Frank Goldsmith


39 WITH TEN CAR RONKONKOMA TRAIN NUMBER 236 LEAVING MINEOLA IN 1954


ENGINE 39 ON THE WYE AT PORT JEFFERSON WITH TWELVE CAR TRAIN NUMBER 4625


39 ON THE TEN CAR OYSTER BAY CLUB CAR TRAIN NUMBER 552.
THIS TRAIN HAD STEAM UNTIL THE VERY END - OCTOBER 1955.
STEAM WAS MOST RELIABLE AND PROVIDED MORE HEAT FASTER THAN THE DIESEL.


FIFTEEN CAR TRAIN NUMBER 229 DEPARTING HICKSVILLE BEHIND A G5s IN EARLY 1955.



AND THERE WAS JUNE FIFTH...........

JUNE 5, 1955 PASSENGER EXTRA 39 TO GREENPORT


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