Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Boulder sues over historic 'Old No 30' locomotive.

Images from Forest Crossen
She was the stuff of dreams--glistening, powering her way through the snowdrifts, pulling her load of passengers to the mountaintops and ore from the gold and silver and tungsten mines. And into the hearts of children everywhere--I think I can, I think I can.

After her years of service, she was moved in 1952 to her final resting place in Boulder's Central Park, to be cherished and admired and honored for her place in history. The image here is from Forest Crossen's book, and he is fittingly seen in the window at the Engineer's seat. I've also recorded an image of the commemorative plaque placed during this ceremony.

In 2004, No 30 was removed for restoration, by a city still in love with her after all these years.

Dismantled at Uhrich Locomotive Works in Strasburg, Colorado, it was reported to be prohibitively expensive to get her operational again, and it was my understanding that the city was contemplating which direction to go. Evidently the decision was to rebuild her for cosmetic purposes--not to functioning status.

Now it turns out that the shop she was transferred to reports missing parts when they received her--"hundreds of missing parts -- including 10 grease cellar boxes, two eccentric crank keys, 221 boiler tubes and 34 mounting bolts," according to the report in the Daily Camera

These heartbreaking photos were taken by Jim Poston, posted online at the website of The Colorado Historic Train Preservation Association. Thanks to Jim and the folks at TCHTPA. 

It pleases me no end to see that something is happening here, after no apparent movement for five years, and along the way there is some recognition of the historic importance of not just No 30 but the railroad links to the mountain communities.

She deserves more than this.

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