Lehigh Valley ALCO RS2's at Jim Thorpe . Watercolor . 12" x 16"
... Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, was founded as the town of Mauch Chunk in 1850 and in 1851 the Lehigh Valley Railroad (LVR), under the control and leadership of Asa Packer, laid track along the course of the Lehigh River from Mauch Chunk to Easton. By 1887 the Central Railroad of New Jersey (CNJ) also had a huge presence in Mauch Chunk and built a train station, designed by the Wilson Brothers & Company of Philadelphia, on the west side of the river. This must have irked Asa Packer no end. He had built his mansion high on a hill overlooking the town and now down at what grew into a sprawling CNJ yard complex. The LVR did build a depot in Mauch Chunk... further downstream... around the bend... on the other side of the river... and... the indignity... it was purposely burned down as a training excercise by the Jim Thorpe Fire Company in the early 1960's. The LVR and CNJ eventually mereged their lines in 1965 and abandoned redundant trackage. The CNJ station remains.
The ALCO RS diesel electric Road Switcher, is a workhorse, locomotive produced in variants beginning with the RS1 of 1941 through the RS36, ending in 1963... available as either a 4 axle or 6 axle. I have no idea how many of these the Lehigh Valley had... nor how many different paint schemes they appeared in. I have seen photographs of RS2 #212, illustrated circa early 1970's, in multiple stripe versions with two different LVR reds, and with two different short hoods and number boards... following some front end collision repair.