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Requiem for a heavyweight | by 95wombat
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Requiem for a heavyweight

This half-million pound hulk is a GG1, once the most handsome electric locomotive on the rails.


The Pennsylvania Railroad brought on the great industrial designer Raymond Loewy to tweak the design after the first GG1 was completed in 1935. He rounded and smoothed the corners, added the famous five-pinstripe paint scheme, and got rid of the rivets in favor of welded body panels. (I wonder if this particular locomotive would be even more corroded if it had thousands of rivets holding its body together.)


Some 139 more GG1s were built and they ran for almost 50 years, right up until the early 1980s, when I was getting interested in trains. I got to see the last of these art deco machines rolling through Newark Penn Station a few times, which was nice.


I've photographed this particular GG1 at least a half-dozen times and had no intention of ever doing so again. But we were only five miles away one evening, and my son, who's had his first DSLR for six weeks, started talking about the golden hour and the ideal time to take pictures ... our truck was soon zipping east on a detour to Cooperstown Junction.


There's one other GG1 parked here, and 350,000 mosquitoes.

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Taken on September 18, 2010