Rare Steam Locomotives of the Historic Golden Age
Summer means the big boys come out to play. The rare steam locomotives of the historic Golden Age debut alongside the vintage diesel brigade for rail tours throughout the summer season. Launching on May 26, trains depart from either the Rusk or Palestine depot every Thursday, Friday and Saturday with a few special events sprinkled throughout the busy summer calendar.
In addition to the vintage steam engines that power many of the present-day excursion trains, Texas State Railroad is home to extremely rare Texas & Pacific steam engine #610. Many would consider this massive locomotive a dinosaur, but Texas State Railroad has preserved it as an endangered species to be coddled and protected. The sole survivor of the T&P’s fleet of 70 engines with the 2-10-4 (Texas) wheel arrangement, #610 dignified the rails during the golden age of steam. Its design combined a high-capacity boiler with a modern valve gear and a four-wheeled trailing truck which became the prototype for American steam locomotives and a tribute to American engineering genius.