S.P. 219

Southern Pacific Lines

Steam-Powered Locomotive

Built by:

Baldwin Locomotive Works – 1880

Wheel Arrangement:

0-4-0T  Shop Switcher


20 Tons

On Permanent Loan from:

Railway & Locomotive Historical Society

Southern California Chapter – 1954


currently undergoing restoration

to operating condition

The old locomotive was a featured attraction at the Grand Opening of the new Los Angeles Union Station in 1939. Noted railroad historian, Gerald Best, posed in the cab before the big parade on Alameda Street.

The locomotive known to visitors of Travel Town as “Southern Pacific 20” was originally built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1880 for the proposed Market Street, Park and Cliff Railroad of San Francisco as their “Number 2”.  The locomotive was built an 0-4-2T tank engine and was covered by wooden street car body – making it what was referred to as a “steam dummy” or “motor”.  The practice of disguising street railway locomotives was common at the end of the 19th Century – in an attempt to fool horses that were accustomed to sharing the roads with streetcars, but frightened by the newfangled steam engine

"Steam Dummy" No. 20 in its 'street car disguise' while working on the California Motor Road.

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More Interesting Information:

Locomotives often have several different numbers during their years of service.  In 1900, old “Motor No. 2” was sold to the Southern Pacific, renumbered “20” and moved to Colton, California to work on their Southern California Motor Roada three-mile-long railroad running between San Bernardino and Colton, California.  In 1905, the Southern Pacific’s Los Angeles Shops rebuilt the locomotive to a 0-4-0T configuration, removing the trailing wheels and the ‘street car disguise’. Now renumbered “219” she worked for several years as shop switcher at the Los Angeles Shops until being transferred up north to the Southern Pacific’s Bay Shore Shops near San Francisco. Notoriety came to the locomotive in 1939 when she was dressed up as a fictitious Cahuenga Valley Railroad No. 2 for ‘performance’ in the Gala Pageant at the Grand Opening of then brand-new Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal.  The locomotive eventually became the property of the Southern California Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society, which presented her to Travel Town in 1954.   After display in Griffith Park for over 50 years, the locomotive was completely disassembled and is now undergoing a restoration back into operating condition.

As 'shop switcher' No. 219 at the Southern Pacific's Sacramento Shops in 1937.