Last weekend I attended a train show over in Ponchatoula, Louisiana. While there I ran across an old friend that I hadn’t seen in perhaps 25 years. He mentioned that he had been checking out the photos that I have posted, and wondered if I’d perhaps post something more local to this area (South Louisiana). I informed him that the vast majority of my slide collection had been lost in the Great Flood of 2016, therefore I had precious little to share. But digging through my “scraps”, I came across this photograph I’d taken of the former Southern Pacific steamer #745.
The #745 is a class Mk-5 Mikado (2-8-2), and was built in the Espee’s shop in Algiers, La. back in 1921. She operated on the Texas and New Orleans subsidiary of the Southern Pacific. She has been restored back to operating condition by the Louisiana Steam Train Association (LASTA) in New Orleans.
In 2005 the #745 and her train were on a tour around the state. It’s the month of May, and the train had been on display in Hammond, Louisiana for the day. In late afternoon I captured this view as the train departed for Baton Rouge, the next leg of it’s trip. Looking north, we see the train backing down the Canadian National’s McComb Subdivision mainline (this is the line between Chicago and New Orleans). The switch in the background is the beginning of the Hammond Subdivision, where she will stop and reverse direction, then head west for Baton Rouge.