Wednesday, January 12, 2022

And They're Off...

The locomotive on the front of this post card was part of the “Great Locomotive Chase” during the American Civil War.
Some details about the chase are included in the information below. There is another locomotive that was involved in that chase that has also been preserved and restored. There will be more about this one next week. The locomotive in today’s post is called “The General”. I found this information about the engine on line all at this website: The Western & Atlantic Railroad No. 3, named The General, is a type of 4-4-0 "American Standard" steam locomotive that was built in 1855 by The Rogers, Ketchum & Grosvenor Company of Paterson, New Jersey for the Western and Atlantic Railroad, and was involved in the "Great Locomotive Chase" of the American Civil War. (To whom it was owned by the Confederacy of the United States during the Civil War) During the Civil War, the "General" was designed to haul freight and passenger trains between Atlanta, GA, and Chattanooga, TN. It often transported Confederate soldiers as well as numerous officers, including the famous Robert E. Lee. The "Great Locomotive Chase" was an event which occurred April 12, 1862, in northern Georgia when the General was hijacked by a group of Union spies led by James J. Andrews while the train was stopped for breakfast at Big Shanty (now Kennesaw, Georgia). Their goal was burn bridges, destroy telegraph lines, and railroad tracks between Atlanta, GA, and Chattanooga, TN. The train's conductor, William A. Fuller, pursued the train, first on foot, then on a push-cart, and later on other locomotives encountered, one of which being the Texas. After an eight hour pursuit, just two miles north of Ringgold, GA the General had run out of fuel and the spies abandoned it. After the war, the "General" continued on the Western & Atlantic. When the railroad began numbering engines, as it was the 39th acquired, the "General" was numbered #39. In 1880, it was renumbered #3. Then in 1891, The General retired from service and it was stored on a siding in Vinings, GA, until it was restored for display at the 1899 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago, IL. In 1890, the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railway overhauled the General and provided the locomotive for public events and to promote the line's Civil War history (to drum up the tourism trade) up through the 1930's. From 1901-1959 the locomotive used to be on static display at Chattanooga Union Depot in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The locomotive is now preserved on static display at the Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History in Kennesaw, Georgia, and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The post card was published by the Hivnor Card Company out of Zanesvill, Ohio. I could not find anything about them on line. It is a relatively modern post card, of the Photochrome or Plastichrome variety. The "K" inside the diamond is interesting, but I cannot find anything on line about this symbol either.

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If you know anything about the history of the cards, the trains or the locations, please add them.