RailPictures.Net Photo: BLE 643 Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad Steam 2-10-4 at McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania by Timothy E. Pavlic II
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Since added on October 23, 2019

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» Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad (more..)
» Steam 2-10-4 (more..)
» McKees Rocks Bottoms 
» McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania, USA (more..)
» October 20, 2019
Locomotive No./Train ID Photographer
» BLE 643 (more..)
» Unknown
» Timothy E. Pavlic II (more..)
» Contact Photographer
Remarks & Notes 
Naked and Unafraid

Bessemer & Lake Erie Texas type #643 has had a rocky history over the past couple decades. Restored to operating condition in the mid/late 1980s, it was all dressed up with nowhere to go (except a few feet inside a warehouse). Since then, 643 has sat and has been for sale for a number of years for a rather high price. Queue the panic when the locomotive turned up for sale for a lower price this past summer--on eBay, of all places, with the news that its home had been sold and the new property owner wanted it out of there in two months, whole or otherwise.

While this photo shows 643 missing a number of things (notably the massive tender and smokebox door), it's not in any danger of meeting the torch. The Age of Steam Roundhouse announced on August 5, 2019 that it had (finally) successfully acquired the giant ore hauler and would move it to Sugarcreek, where it call the center stall home. AOSR founder Jerry Jacobson had pursued the locomotive several times over the years prior to his passing. While extremely unlikely to ever operate again (its working order weight of 454 tons and rigid wheelbase exceed the maximums allowed on the OHCR), we can all take comfort in knowing this rare survivor has escaped the torch yet again (and hopefully, for the last time).
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