Walter Strong


image 151. Alaska Railroad Number 1052 RF1 a classic photo of a rare locomotive seen no where but on the Alaska Railroad where they were ordered built from war surplus RSD1 Alco locomotives.
image 152. The front pilot of 2-8-4 Mountain Number 801 looms over the switch maintainer. The challenge of keeping the points, throwbars and switch stands functioning in sub zero weather was constant.
image 153. Nice detail view of RSD1 Number 1035 next to the Diesel house.
image 154. RSD 1 Number 1030 in black with yellow trim behind the Diesel shop.
image 155. Alaska Railroad Number 1203 is one of four 600HP SW1 locomotives on the Roster. They were used in the Anchorage Yard and Elmendorf and Fort Richardson to do local switching. They faded to a baby blue with yellow stripes and black lettering.
image 156. RSD1 Number 1017 obtained an odd one of a kind paint job. Cannot tell from the photo if it is Blue or Black with yellow stripe and lettering. Glad it did not catch on.
image 157. RF1 B unit 1075 demonstrates a common feature on these locomotive bodies. Notice the vertical grab irons are all recessed into a half tube indentation in the car side. Remember these were built over the RSD1 chassis. Postulation is that once the car body was built adding the grab irons would exceed normal width limitations. The solution was to recess the grab irons.
image 158. ARR F7 Number 1502 in MU with a pair of GP7u locomotives with a North bound freight near Wasilla.
image 159. Alaska Railroad Number 162 was a GI class s160 and the only one built by Alco that made it to Alaska. All her other 11 sisters were built by Baldwin. While virtually identical in performance and appearance, you could find Alco casting marks on some of the parts like the cylinder block.
image 160. Alaska Railroad FP7 1514 in the original EMD applied blue and yellow paint scheme. She was the last FP7 built by EMD.
image 161. Alaska Railroad F7 1502 is hear paired with F7 B 1503 shortly after arrival in 1952. Both locomotives have extended fuel tanks as seen here protruding beyond the skirt. That is FP7 #1514 on the far end. The FP7 units were equipped with steam generators to heat the passenger cars of the day.
image 162. 1502, 1503 and 1514 next to the Diesel shop in Anchorage.
image 163. Alco RF1 b unit Number 1053 next to the Diesel Shop in Anchorage. This is the location of the present day fueling rack.
image 164. Just leaving the North end of the Mears Memorial bridge with a gravel train is the Nenana yard switcher Number 318 an ex U.S. Army 0-6-0.
image 165. See description #164
image 166. See description #164
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image 168. See description #164
image 169. See description #164
image 170. See description #164
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172. See description #164

image 173. See description #164
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image 176. See description #164
image 177. Alaska Steamship Co. added a new twist in 1963 with the Trainship Alaska III which was an enclosed railroad ferry with a capacity of 50 rail cars. She is seen here on her first arrival in Whittier. Over the next 11 years she completed 500 round trips between New Westminster BC and Whittier.
image 178. Trainship Alaska III was created for service from gulf ports to Cuba and was not built in the United States. As a result it did not meet the Jones Act requirements for only American bottoms in service between U.S. ports. As a result it was limited to service between Whittier and Prince Rupert BC as a southern terminus.
image 179. As a stern loader the vessel had to back into the ramp. Here she is opening the stern door for the approach. An elevator in the bow allowed railcars to be moved down one deck into the hold.
image 180. Pennsylvania Railroad Gon 387713 is loaded with pipe as it comes ashore out of the car deck of the Trainship Alaska III.

Special thanks goes to the Walter Strong family for providing these images!
Thanks also to Pat Durand for the extended commentaries.

Page created 3/24/11 and last updated 3/29/11
© 2011 Walter Strong collection unless otherwise noted

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