Press Releases

The Machine That Built America Returns to the Naugatuck Valley, After More than 60 Years


THOMASTON, Conn., May 10, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- The hiss of steam, the steady chugging of the engine, the call of the whistle echoing off the hills... These were the sounds of the iron horse, the American steam locomotive, The Machine That Built America. Those sounds will be heard again in Thomaston this May, for the first time in 62 years, when the Railroad Museum of New England will host Flagg Coal Co. #75.

Flagg Coal Co. #75 is a 40 ton coal-fired steam locomotive built in 1930. It worked in coal mines and quarries until it was retired in 1953. It rusted away, forgotten until 1991, when it was purchased by father and son team John and Barney Gramling. The Gramlings moved #75 to their Indiana farm and carefully restored it to operating condition, completing it October 2001. Since then, #75 has traveled as far as Florida, Michigan, and North Carolina as a living, breathing ambassador of American steam railroading.

Between the 1830s and 1960, steam locomotives carried passengers and freight to every corner of America. They became part of our national history, a symbol of mobility and strength. Technology advances after World War II changed the face of railroading forever. By 1948, steam engines were gone from the Naugatuck Valley, replaced by modern diesel locomotives on the New Haven Railroad out of Waterbury, ending an important era in modern industrial history.

Don't miss this unique opportunity! Trips will be operated over our scenic railroad between May 22 and 31, departing from Thomaston Station. This is a special event you will not want to miss! Call 860.283.7245 or visit for more information! On the web: Railroad Museum of New England: Latest news and updates from RMNE: Pictures on Flickr: SOURCE Railroad Museum of New England Copyright (C) 2010 PR Newswire. All rights reserved -0- KEYWORD: Connecticut INDUSTRY KEYWORD: TRN