Salt Lake & Alta Railroad (1913-1917)

This page was last updated on April 23, 2019.

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Salt Lake & Alta operations began in November 1913.

Salt Lake & Alta operations ended on August 27, 1917, and the corporation itself was suspended in 1918.

Description Builder Builder
SL&A 1 42 Ton Two Truck Shay Lima 2715 Nov 1913

General Notes:

  1. Salt Lake & Alta no. 1 had 10x12" cylinders and 29-1/2" wheels, and was shipped from the Lima factory on November 8, 1913.
  2. Salt Lake & Alta no. 1 was purchased from Lima Locomotive Works on a lease-to-own agreement signed on November 8, 1913. Payment on the lease was to be in the form of 12 bi-monthly payments of $500, at 6% interest. The first payment was due on May 8, 1914, and the last was due on April 8, 1915. None of the payments were made, and on April 19, 1915 the lease was extended for a year. No payments were made in the subsequent period, and on April 6, 1916, the lease was extended for another year. On July 31, 1917, Lima published a public notice in the local Salt Lake Tribune newspaper that on August 10, 1917, the 42-ton Shay locomotive was to be sold at auction to recover the amount owed to Lima. (Salt Lake County Recorder, Leins and Leases, Book 2Z, pages 190-192; Book 2Q, pages 578-579; Book 3B, pages 578-579; Salt Lake Tribune, July 31, 1917)
  3. Salt Lake & Alta no. 1 was sold to Winton Lumber Company, Bovill, Idaho, before February 1920 when it was shown in Lima records as being converted to burn oil; sold in February 1922 to Deer Park Lumber Company, Deer Park, Washington; sold in February 1930 to Stone & Webster Engineering Corporation no. 4, Rock Island, Washington; sold to Washington Electric Company (same location); sold in July 1938 to Star Machinery Company (dealer), Seattle, Washington; sold in April 1939 to Jose Soriano & Company, Manila, Philippines. (More information at

Salt Lake & Mercur no. 9 (a 60-ton, three-truck Shay; Lima, 1787, December 1906) was leased briefly to Salt Lake & Alta during its rebuilding of the D&RG branch (both Salt Lake & Alta, and Salt Lake & Mercur were owned by J. G. Jacobs). Salt Lake & Mercur no. 9 was sold in March 1914 to J. H. Chambers & Son no. 9, Cottage Grove, Oregon; sold to U. S. Logging Company, Cottage Grove, Oregon; sold in September 1919 to Brown Lumber Company, Cottage Grove, Oregon; sold to Western Lumber & Export Company no. 9, Cottage Grove, Oregon by May 1920; sold in September 1924 to Anderson & Middleton Lumber Company no. 9, Cottage Grove, Oregon; sold to Oregon, Pacific & Eastern Railroad no. 9, Cottage Grove, Oregon; sold in 1941 to The Dalles Locomotive & Machine Company (dealer), The Dalles, Oregon. (More information at


George Pitchard found the following:

Information from the Lima "drawing card index" for construction number 2715:

Locomotive No. 2715 Order No. 557 Plan No. 2066
Built for: J. G. Jacobs, Salt Lake City, Utah
Road No.: 1 Name: Salt Lake and Alta
Shipped to: Midvale, Utah Date shipped: 11/8/13
Gauge of track: 56-1/2"
Style of Locomotive: 42-ton Shay, 2 truck Cylinders: 3 - 10x12"
Wheels, diameter: 29-1/2" Total empty weight: 69,500 lbs.
Working pressure: 180 lbs. Fuel: Coal Tank capacity: 1560 gallons water
Rebuilt to oil-burner: Feb. 1920 (apparently by the Winton company in Idaho)