Display engine in Fort Smith?

Discussion in 'General' started by tripphd, Aug 22, 2005.

  1. tripphd

    tripphd Member

    I have a question about the engine that used to be on display at Kay Rogers Park in Fort Smith. I have not been by it in a long time, and wondered if it is still there, and if there are any plans to rebuild it? I don't remember it's layout or engine number, I just remember when I was young crawling around on it.
  2. AM104

    AM104 Guest

    Frisco #4003 is not at Kay Rodgers Park anymore. In 1998/1999, the board of directors for the park decided to have it scrapped in order to make room for a new exhibit hall. Members of the Fort Smith Trolley Museum convinced the directors to not have it scrapped. Instead, we were given the engine and tender provided we moved it ourselves. With the help of a house mover, 4003 (a 2-8-2a) is now sitting at the entrance of the Fort Smith Trolley Museum at 100 S. 4th Street in Fort Smith. The drive rails are off of the engine and are being housed in another storage building. It has been repainted and still looks great.

    We did have a steam engine specialist examine 4003 for possible restoration. The good news is yes it's restorable. The bad news is it will be around $750,000 roughly. The trolley museum does not have the funding to complete such a task nor can we even operate it if it was restored due to insurance and lack of training.

    Instead, we try to keep it as clean and presentable as possible. We even decorate it tastefully for Christmas complete with headlight and number boards lit up. Due to our insurance, we cannot allow anybody to climb aboard.

    Hope this helps you out.

    Daniel Moore
    Fort Smith Trolley Museum
  3. tulsamackman

    tulsamackman Member

    I grew up in Ft. Smith and as a 10-11 year old kid watched them move engine #4003 to Kay Rodgers Park. I think that it was around 1956-7. They laid temporary tracks across Midland Blvd and Waldron Road and drove it under it's own power to the park. I remember that as a kid it was very impressive. Was this engine part of the "Meteor" line that served St. Louis, Oklahoma City, Tulsa & Ft. Smith? I thought that the "Meteors" (4500 series) were all 4-8-4's? If not a Meteor, what passenger line did it run? Freight maybe? I'm glad that you guys have it now and look forward to seeing it again when in Ft. Smith, it's been a long time since I've seen it.

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