Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures

ATSF Freight Train on SPRR Siding

Newhall, California

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An Atcheson, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway freight train is stopped on a Southern Pacific Railroad siding in front of today's William S. Hart Park in Newhall, circa 1954. If the picture were taken today, the historic SPRR Saugus Depot would probably be just out of view to the right, as seen in this comparable view. Of course, it would be a few years before there was a Hart Park and a few decades before the Saugus Depot moved there.

The view is to the southeast. The large, white oil tanks in the distance would be some of the ones seen here.

Both the "A" and "B" units of the diesel-electric locomotive No. 236 can been seen (assuming the "B" unit is also numbered 236). The "A" or "cab" unit is the component with a driving cab and control system. Lacking those, the "B" or "booster" unit is operated by, and in tandem with, the "A" unit. General Electric designed this F-7 locomotive type in such a way that the "A" and "B" units looked like a single, streamlined engine when coupled.

GE's Electro-Motive Division produced more than 3,800 of these 1,500-hp EMD F7's from February 1949 to December 1953. They were designed for freight, but some were used for passenger service. The Santa Fe purchased a total of 215 "A" units and 247 "B" units; it used Nos. 202-280 (both "A" and "B") for freight service.

By comparison, the Southern Pacific purchased a similar number: 250 "A" units and 220 "B" units.

LW3745: 9600 dpi jpeg from 5x7 copy print (probably made from color transparency), purchased 2020 by Leon Worden.
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