A new exhibit of a 7.5 inch gauge, live steam engine, intrically machined and built by Curtis B. Silver, named the “Silverado Railroad” will be dedicated at the Toledo History Center. Saturday, November 22nd from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. The exhibited 2-6-0 balloon-stack locomotive, tender and box car is some 13 feet in length and weighs just short of 1,000 lbs.
Donated to the Railroad Society by B.& B. Silver of Depoe Bay, the engine took almost three years to build. Steam is created by the propane powered boiler, the propane tank housed in the metal box car. A small seat can be installed on the tender for the engineer/operator. Having no immediate place to operate the Silverado, the Society was seeking an appropriate venue to display the train so that folks could appreciate the fine craftsmanship. The train was first introduced to Toledo, riding on a float in the Summer Festival. Members of the History Center stepped forward and indicated that space could be provided in their facility.
Live steamer aficionados and operators run their equipment at specially designed sites. A group known as the Pacific Northwest Live Steamers offer demonstrations and rides at Brooks, Oregon. Passengers ride on flatcars with small seats. Train Mountain in Southern Oregon, hosts engineers from several countries that even fly their equipment in from overseas. Most of these live steamers were built by skilled machinists and were very popular in many public parks. Much of the machining of materials is now being done by computerization.
Full scale drawings, information about the builder and the history of railroad building in Lincoln County will be presented during the dedication.