Molossia Railroad



Coyote is a 2-4-2 Baldwin Columbia, built in 1890 by Baldwin Locomotive Works. The 2-4-2 Columbia type got its name because one of the first ones manufactured was exhibited at the World's Columbian Exposition at Chicago in 1893. This type of engine was not very successful and saw limited use worldwide. Coyote however has proven to be a workhorse for the Molossia Railroad, hauling lighter consists throughout the entire road without fail.


Rattler is an 0-4-0 Porter Medium Side Tank Engine, built in 1887 by the H.K. Porter Locomotive Works. Side tanks keep the water cooler in hot weather and keep the center of gravity lower than saddle tanks. The design is extremely good for a haul of moderate distance, over sharp curves and uneven track. It is sturdily built for extra hard service. Rattler is a tough little locomotive and frequently out-pulls the bigger engines.


On semi permanent loan from the nearby Virginia and Truckee Railroad, Number 25 is a Baldwin 10-Wheeler built in 1905. The prototype is now in display in the Nevada State Railroad Museum, Carson City, Nevada, USA. This engine type replaced the 4-4-0 American type in the latter half of the 19th century in fast freight and passenger service. It was larger than the 4-4-0 and could pull a heavier load. The 4 wheel leading truck allowed good tracking at fairly high engine speeds.

"V & T's Number 25 was puchased new from Baldwin in 1905, costing $8,425. It was converted to oil in 1907 and thereafter operated primarily as a back-up engine to the road's famed "Reno." On occasions, No. 25 hauled both passenger and freight trains between Reno, Carson and Virginia City. From 1911 to 1947, the busy 4-6-0 ran 80% of the time, averaging as many as 30,000 miles a year. Characterized by V & T engineers as fast, light and easily handled, No. 25 made a niche in history by pulling the last scheduled passenger train to Virginia City in May, 1938. When that line was scrapped in 1941, the contractor hired the engine to assist in its dismantlement. As railroad cars became heavier and longer, the V & T sought a more modern engine as a replacement and sold No, 25 to RKO Pictures in 1947 for $5,000. For the next ten years the ex-V & T engine starred in a number of motion pictures. No. 25 last operated under its own power in 1955 when the 50 year old locomotive hauled a special train between Los Angeles and San Pedro commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Union Pacific Railroad's Salt Lake Route. Following the 1958 purchase of the old RKO movie studios, which included No. 25, by Desilu Productions, Inc., the locomotive was sold to Hurlbut Amusements of Buena Park, Ca. six years later. In 1971, the State of Nevada acquired No. 25 for $16,000, preceding an effort by rail fans to bring home vintage V & T equipment. No. 25 is now in occasional service during selected steam-ups during the year."
(Text from the Nevada State Railroad Museum website)

Here in Molossia, we have the pleasure of running our own Number 25 several times a year, and riding on the original at the Nevada State Railroad Museum at least once a year.


Number 18, "Zephyr", is a 2-6-0 "mining" Mogul, built by Baldwin Locomotive Works. The first 2-6-0 Mogul locomotive appeared in 1852. The 2-6-0 was an outgrowth of the 0-6-0. The 0-6-0 was too rigid for the undulating track of the period, so in the early 1860's, a radial lead truck was added to the locomotive, creating a 2-6-0. The Mogul has 50 percent more tractive power than the 4-4-0 American. Moguls were light of foot, which allowed them to operate on tracks with light rail and minimal ballast, making them popular with short lines. Zephyr is smaller than a standard Mogul, hence the term "mining" Mogul.


Number 14, Bighorn is a Baldwin 10-Wheeler built in 1918. Bighorn was purchased from the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad and is still burning wood, having not yet been converted to coal or oil. Much like the 2-8-0 Consolidation, the 4-6-0 was a go-anywhere, do-anything locomotive that carried freight and passenger cars, and was also used for industrial applications. The 4-6-0s were utilized throughout the steam era, with some locomotives seeing use in the American South as late as the 1950's. Bighorn is the workhorse of the Molossia Railroad fleet and hauls the bigger consists of the road, both frieght and passenger.


Number 3, Mustang is a Porter 0-4-0 saddle tank engine, built in 1908. Purchased new, Mustang is a oil burner, and is intended for general use use on the Molossia Railroad. The H. K. Porter Company was one of the best known locomotive manufacturers. It was the third largest producer, in terms of number of locomotives built, and was the leading producer of what Porter called 'Light Locomotives'. These were engines built specifically for industrial applications, mining, logging, plantations, or lightly built narrow gauge railroads. They helped to build the West, and are found in every country from Argentina to Zanzibar. Mustang is the latest addition to the Molossian locomotive fleet.

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