Maine Central / Portland & Rumford Falls / Somerset / Washington County 4-4-0 "American" Locomotives of the USA

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class 1/H (Locobase 2151)

Data from Catalogue Descriptive of Simple and Compound Locomotives built by Brooks Locomotive Works, Dunkirk, NY (Buffalo, NY: Matthew-Northrup Company, 1899). (Builder info from B.Rumary, 25 Kingscombe, Gurney Slade, Radstock, BA3 4TH, ENGLAND and Jeremy Lambert as supplied by Allen Stanley in March 2004.) Works numbers were 2948-2950 in April 1898 and 3275 in July 1899.

The Washington County Railroad Company ran in Maine as an independent line until its takeover by the Maine Central in 1911. According to a list compiled by Mr. Bradley L. Peters in 1976 and preserved on (visited 5 Aug 2004), it was chartered in 1893 and its major lines opened in 1898. Altogether it operated 115 miles connecting Ellsworth, Machias, and Eastport

The class shown shared the same firebox and had the same number of fire tubes as the fiveTen-Wheelers that went into production just before in Brooks' Dunkirk Works; see Locobase 2983.

Obviously there was little use for a small 4-4-0 in the MEC as each of these locomotives operated for a little over 20 years, after which they were scrapped.

Road # Year Changed to new # MEC Scrapped

1 21 in 1900 117 Sept 1921

2 22 in Nov 1905 118 Feb 1920

3 23 in Jan 1907 119 Sept 1921

4 24 in May 1906 120 June 1916

Class 10/E (Locobase 11434)

Data from "Locomotive Building," The Railroad Gazette, Vol XLI, No 9 (31 August 1906), p. 56. Works numbers were 41438-41439 in October 1997.

This Maine short line connected the town of Oakland on the Maine Central to Moosehead Lake (passing Moxie Pond on the way). The lake was a major attraction for nature-loving excursionists.

According to 8th-grade Morgan Hisler's hist orry of the Somerset (in the Main Memory Network at, last accessed 10 July 2010), the Somerset cost $30,000 per mile to build. Construction comprised three phases: 1872 to 1876 covered the 25 miles from Oakland to North Anson. Beginning in 1887 through 1890, the next stretch of 16 miles between North Anson to Bingham was completed. Finally, in 1904, 49 1/2 miles of track through the North Woods (no, really, the North Woods) reached Moosehead Lake.

In 1911, the Maine Central bought out the Somerset, which then was known as the Kineo branch. Passenger service ended in 1933, which also saw the uprooting of all track north of Bingham.

Class 9 / H (Locobase 12172)

Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University, Volume 20, p. 40. Works number was 144489 in October 1895.

The P&RF was based in Rumford, Maine and grew steadily. Its location and traffic levels led the Maine Central in 1907 to lease it and the Rumford Falls & Rangeley Lakes for 999 years. This Eight-wheeler served both railroads until the MEC scrapped it in December 1911.

Class D (Locobase 11112)

Data from Schenectady Locomotive Works, Illustrated Catalogue of Simple and Compound Locomotives (Philadelphia: J B Lippincott, 1897), pp. 28-29. Works numbers were 4224-4228 in November 1894.

Schenectady's catalogue says that the engine was " service on the fast heavy seaside passenger trains between Portland and Bar Harbor, Me."

Specifications by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
Class1/H10/E9 / HD
Locobase ID2151 11434 12172 11112
RailroadWashington County (MEC)Somerset (MEC)Portland & Rumford Falls (MEC)Maine Central (MEC)
Number in Class4215
Road Numbers1-4/21-24/117-12010, 12/86-879 / 13877, 81, 84, 156-157/ 193-195
Number Built4215
BuilderBrooksAlco-ManchesterBurnham, Williams & CoSchenectady
Valve GearStephensonStephensonStephensonStephenson
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase8' 8.75' 9.17'
Engine Wheelbase22.67'22.83'24.08'
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheebase 0.35 0.38 0.38
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender)48.92'45.75'45.58'46.67'
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle)
Weight on Drivers70800 lbs61500 lbs64000 lbs72000 lbs
Engine Weight107000 lbs98000 lbs100000 lbs111800 lbs
Tender Light Weight85000 lbs78000 lbs
Total Engine and Tender Weight192000 lbs176000 lbs
Tender Water Capacity4000 gals3200 gals3200 gals3400 gals
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal)8.5 tons5 tons tons tons
Minimum weight of rail (calculated)59 lb/yard51 lb/yard53 lb/yard60 lb/yard
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter62"63"62"68"
Boiler Pressure180 psi180 psi160 psi160 psi
Cylinders (dia x stroke)18" x 24"17" x 24"18" x 24"19" x 24"
Tractive Effort19189 lbs16845 lbs17057 lbs17328 lbs
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 3.69 3.65 3.75 4.16
Heating Ability
Firebox Area134 sq. ft142 sq. ft156 sq. ft
Grate Area21.80 sq. ft18 sq. ft17.60 sq. ft18.32 sq. ft
Evaporative Heating Surface1490 sq. ft1400 sq. ft1598 sq. ft1828 sq. ft
Superheating Surface
Combined Heating Surface1490 sq. ft1400 sq. ft1598 sq. ft1828 sq. ft
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume210.79222.05226.07232.10
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation3924324028162931
Same as above plus superheater percentage3924324028162931
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area2412002272024960
Power L15684053986005
Power MT353.980371.89367.74


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