Born in May 1944 the AT&SF 2926 ran a million miles in the American Southwest before being retired in an Albuquerque City park in 1953. Rescued from that park in 2000 the giant steam locomotive is being restored to operation by the all volunteer crew of the New Mexico Steam Locomotive and Railroad Historical Society.
NMSL&RHS (New Mexico Steam Locomotive & Rail Road Historical Society) is a non-profit organization staffed solely by dedicated volunteers whose mission is to fully restore the Baldwin 4-8-4 Steam Locomotive, AT&SF 2926, to operational status while promoting and educating the public about the ties of State economic development with rail transportation. WWW.NMSLRHS.ORG is the only Official Website that represents the project. We have also registered WWW.2926.US as a shorter, easier to remember alias which points to the exact same website.
In the mid 1990s a group of train enthusiasts formed NMS&LRHS for the express purpose of restoring the 2926 to full running condition. At about 10:30 in the morning on June 23, 2000, the giant drive wheels rolled for the first time in forty years, as the 2926 was towed out of the park. This began a two-year pirouette, as the Society moved her about twelve blocks to their newly established "World Headquarters", as the restoration site is called, at 8th and Haines Streets. At the World Headquarters, a group of dedicated volunteers is performing the challenging tasks associated with putting the 2926 back in full running order.
In late October 2019, the locomotive was successfully steamed-up for the 3rd time and subsequently received a successful boiler fire-up report from the FRA (Federal Railroad Administration) who witnessed and monitored the event. The cylinder pistons were not installed at the time for a number of reasons, including to more fully allow evacuation and exhaust of any remaining rust and debris in the engines plenums and ducting, as well as to avoid the wear & tear on the pistons and rings and the constant lubrication that would be required for the pistons while spotting and moving the engine later when it wasn't under its own power.
The engine was drained of water for the remainder of the 2019-2020 winter season to avoid problems with freezing or paying expensive heating bills, with the intent to resume work on the locomotive in earnest in the early spring of 2020 once temperatures permitted. The expectation was to finally install the pistons, steam the engine up for the 4th time, and move it under its own power for the media and public to witness.
Unfortunately, the New Mexico Governor's Public Health Orders have severely limited our volunteers' freedom to assemble and work on the locomotive for most of the year 2020. Still, preservation and work on the locomotive continues albeit at a snail's pace currently. We have also since acquired and are re-conditioning a used Amtrak baggage car to carry our work crew, tools and supplies if/when we finally get under way with pulling private and public passenger excursions trains someday - which remains the ultimate goal.