Virginia & Truckee @ Sacramento, CA.
Virginia & Truckee Railroad ordered steam locomotive No. 13 early in October 1872, soon after the Nevada short line had completed its connection with the transcontinental Central Pacific at Reno.
Locomotive No. 13 was delivered to the V&T in February of 1873. Empire was an appropriate namesake: Empire City, located three miles east of Carson City, was an important territorial town and station on the Overland Route, and site of several cord wood yards and ore reduction mills. The engine quickly entered freight service on the line from Virginia City to Carson City and Reno. From the late 1880s to 1902 as frantic traffic conditions abated, the V&T held No. 13 in reserve. With an upswing in the economy, the No. 13 received a major overhaul and was once again placed in regular freight service. In 1910 the Carson City shops converted the Empire from wood to fuel oil. Because V&T engine crews considered No. 13 an unlucky number, the number was changed to V&T second No. 15 at this time.
Photographed by Bruce Macdonald, May 4, 1981.
Added to the photo archive by Bruce Macdonald, September 16, 2021.
Railroad: Southern Pacific.
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