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Wasatch & Jordan Valley Railroad (1872-1882)

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This page was last updated on June 25, 2015.

(Return to Wasatch & Jordan Valley Railroad page)

Overview

All locomotives built by the National Locomotive Works (also known as Dawson & Baily), of Connellsville, Pennsylvania; there are no known construction numbers assignable to these engines. (Read more about National/Dawson & Baily)

The 1883-84 "Engines in Utah Service" list shows the W&JV with an 0-6-0 numbered "1" and a 4-4-0 numbered "2," with an 0-6-0 of Dawson & Baily build as Utah & Pleasant Valley No. 1. This leaves a question about which ex W&JV locomotive went to U&PV. Since U&PV number 1 (2nd) was a locomotive with six drive wheels, it is likely that when W&JV number 2 was transferred to U&PV, W&JV number 3, a 4-4-0, was renumbered to become W&JV number 2 to fill its vacant slot. (see Salt Lake Herald, August 3, 1881)

The Hill Climber

Wasatch & Jordan Valley number 2, "Deseret," was equipped with James S. French's "Improvement in Locomotives", U. S. Patent 144,271. The patent was granted on June 7, 1873, and consisted of a rear set of drive wheels that were grooved in the middle of the wheel tread, with outside flanges that were designed to grip both outside edges of the railroad rail. These special rear drive wheels were held away from the rail surface until a force was applied by the engineer by use of a lever, lowering the special drive wheels to the rail surface, thus increasing the tractive power of the locomotive. The design could only be used on a railroad that was built specifically to accept the special drive wheels due to the special guard rails and frogs required on turnouts. (Read more about U. S. Patent 144,271)

"...two new locomotives are also on the way, one of which has French's patent attachment for climbing. This invention has been tested at Connellsville, where the locomotive was built, and advices from there received here are to the effect that it is a great success." (Salt Lake Herald, July 19, 1873)

"On the 6th of September the National Locomotive Works shipped six-wheeler 'Deseret' to Salt Lake City, Utah. Col. McAleer and E. T. Duckworth accompany her to test the feasibility of overcoming heavy grades with light machinery, by French's Patent." The item goes on to say that the loco is "...intended to run on grades of 500 feet to the mile; to accomplish this the hind drivers have a grooved tire that is applied to the rail by a small steam cylinder attached to the engine similar to an air brake and can be applied to give any amount of adhesion." (Uniontown [Pennsylvania] Standard, September 11, 1873) (500 feet rise in one mile = 9.4 percent grade)

The 'Col. McAleer' mentioned was L. F. McAleer, recently made Superintendent of the National Locomotive Works; and E. T. Duckworth a traveling engineer, in charge of set-up and initial operation of new locomotives.

"...the Company have purchased, or ordered, a locomotive of the patent improved climbing variety, manufactured by French, of Virginia, which, it is said, is capable of making ascents of four hundred feet gradient to the mile, the climbing apparatus acting as a brake on the down grade." (Deseret Evening News, September 17, 1873) (400 feet rise in one mile = 7.5 percent grade)

There seems to be no mention in the local press concerning the arrival of this odd locomotive, or its initial performance, other than a note in the Salt Lake Tribune's "Hotel Arrivals" column for October 5th, 1873, which notes the arrival of one L. F. McAleer, of Pennsylvania, at the Valley House in Salt Lake City.

The design was apparently a failure, with W&JV number 2 being rebuilt to a conventional 2-6-0, or at least an 0-6-0, since later D&RGW records show the locomotive as having six drive wheels. As a side note, Mr. French continued to work on his design. On March 10, 1874, U. S. Patent 148,439 was granted by the Patent office, showing French's "Improvement in Driving Wheels for Locomotives." (Read more about U. S. Patent 148,439)

(Read more about the Hill Climber locomotive, also known as "Mr. French's Improvement")

Locomotive Roster

(This roster is based on the unpublished research completed by George Pitchard.)

Wasatch & Jordan Valley Railway 2-6-0 -- 2 locomotives

Road
Number
Name Builder Builder
Number
Date
Built
Date To
W&JV
1883 D&RGW
Number
1886 D&RGW
Number
Date
Vacated
Later
Number
Notes
W&JV 1 Chamois National [191] Feb 1873 28 Feb 1873 D&RGW 111 D&RGW 3     1
W&JV 2 Deseret National [192] Sep 1873 Oct 1873 D&RGW 110 D&RGW 2 May 1880 U&PV 1 2

Description:

Drive Wheel Diameter: 36 inches
Cylinders: 11x16 inches

General Notes:

a. Wasatch & Jordan Valley number 1, "Chamois," was received in Salt Lake City on Friday, February 28, 1873, "having been four weeks on the journey," in charge of J. A. Lantz, Superintendent of the National Locomotive Works (see Salt Lake Herald, March 1, 1873). Cost of this loco was reported as $9,045.00, plus freight. The tender was reported as being 600 gallons capacity, mounted on six wheels, with a single axle at front and an ordinary four-wheel truck at rear. First operation of this locomotive on the W&JV was on March 3rd or 4th, 1873, under the direction of J. A. Lantz.
b. At some unknown date, but probably prior to the D&RGW takeover, W&JV number 1 was changed from a 2-6-0 to an 0-6-0.

Notes:

1. Wasatch & Jordan Valley number 1 was built in 1873, named "Chamois"; to D&RGW 111 in 1883; to D&RGW number 3 in 1886; further disposition unknown.
2. Wasatch & Jordan Valley number 2 was built in 1873, named "Deseret"; equipped with a special set of rear drivers that included a patented "Improvement in Locomotives" that was tested and found to be a failure; rebuilt to standard 2-6-0 (or 0-6-0); to Utah & Pleasant Valley number 1 in May 1880; to D&RGW 110 in 1883; to D&RGW number 2 in 1886; further disposition unknown.
   

Wasatch & Jordan Valley Railway 4-4-0 -- 1 locomotive

Road
Number
Builder Builder
Number
Date
Built
Date To
W&JV
1883 D&RGW
Number
1886 D&RGW
Number
Date
Vacated
Notes
W&JV 3 National [202] Dec 1874   D&RGW 114 D&RGW 5   1

Description:

Drive Wheel Diameter: 42 inches
Cylinders: 12x16 inches

General Notes:

a.

(Research continues)

Notes:

1.

Wasatch & Jordan Valley number 3 was built in 1874; to D&RGW 114 in 1883; to D&RGW number 5 in 1886; further disposition unknown.

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