Union Pacific may restore largest steam engine ever built

Thursday , March 06, 2014 - 12:52 PM


CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- Union Pacific Railroad says it will try to restore one of the largest steam locomotives ever built to operating condition.

The railroad said Tuesday it reached an agreement to acquire a "Big Boy" locomotive from the RailGiants Train Museum at the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds.

It will be moved to Union Pacific's Cheyenne shops, where the railroad maintains other operating steam locomotives.

The railroad says it's uncertain when the move will occur.

Twenty-five of the massive and powerful engines were built in the 1940s to haul heavy Union Pacific freight trains over Wyoming and Utah mountains.

The last was retired in 1962. RailGiants museum acquired one for display.

Restoration will be an enormous undertaking given the locomotive's age and complexity.

Union Pacific is based in Omaha, Neb.

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