September 20, 2017

Trains are part of New Town history

By Edna Sailor
Engine 451 that currently takes its place of honor at the east end of New Town Main Street deserves a second look. We drive by it every day, but there is much about it that most of us probably don’t know.
That type of engine was tagged “The Iron Horse” back in its day. Our engine is unique. New Town has the only F-9 class Soo Line 2-8-0 engine preserved in the United States. Harvey has a 2-8-0 but it is an F-8 class. In the entire United States there are only four Soo Line 2-8-0 steam locomotives preserved. North Dakota has two. The third is located at Iron Horse Museum in Chicago City, Minn., and the fourth is located in Marshfield, WI. The builder was Alco and was located in Schenectady, N.Y.
Dawn and Kent Ohlfs were the Soo Line Historical & Technical Convention Chairs when they visited New Town with the group of eighty train enthusiasts. Both were impressed with the presentation from United Quality grain, another stop on their tour.
“We were so impressed with the information from the gentlemen at United Quality Grain. We were also delighted to find that the train turn around still exists over by the tracks,” Dawn Ohlfs said.
Kent Ohlfs has some advice for community members in New Town.

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