Madison RR Dedicates Tribute Locomotives

The Indiana-based Madison Railroad held a ceremony on Memorial Day to dedicate its “Memorial Fleet” of three locomotives painted in liveries that honor the U.S. Armed Forces and NASA.

The three locomotives painted for the fleet were placed at the stub end of a track once used to bring coal into the power plant at the Madison State Hospital.

The special units include two engines built by Baldwin Locomotive Works.

No. 4 was built for the Atlantic Coast Line as its No. 15, was rebuilt in the 1980s for the Crane Naval Weapons Support Center and is now known as Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division, No. 65-00620.

No. 5 was built for the Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis as its No. 30 and rebuilt in the 1980s for the Navy as No. 65-00530.

Nos. 4 and 5 have been designated as model VO-1000M units after being rebuilt with EMD 567-type prime movers. Both kept their Baldwin operating cabs.

Also present at the ceremony was former NASA Railroad SW1500 No. 3, built for the Toledo, Peoria & Western as its No. 306. It served NASA for decades at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Each locomotive was given emblems along with a quotation beneath its cab.

The 22.7-mile Madison Railroad operates between Madison and North Vernon, Indiana, and has seven employees.

A former Pennsylvania Railroad line that is now owned by the City of Madison, it is best known for its hill from the Ohio River in Madison to North Madison, a distance of 7,012 feet with a grade of 5.89 percent.

The railroad no longer operates over the grade, but the tracks are still in place.

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