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Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range: Locomotives

By | April 19, 2021

The DM&IR is Classic Trains' Railroad of the Month for April 2021

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2-10-4 steam locomotive
2-8-0 steam locomotive

2-8-0 steam locomotive No. 1215

Missabe Road engine 1215, seen at Proctor in July 1950, was from a group of 25 Consolidations built by Baldwin for the Duluth, & Iron Range during 1906–10.

Photograph by Henry J. McCord
2-8-0 steam locomotive
2-8-8-4 steam locomotive

2-8-8-4 steam locomotive No. 225

The last word in DM&IR steam power was the class of 18 M-3 2-8-8-4s built by Baldwin in 1941 and 1943. They were based on Western Pacific’s 2-8-8-2, with a four-wheel trailing truck to carry a larger cab.

Bob Hundman
2-8-8-4 steam locomotive
Two road-switcher diesel locomotives

SD9 diesel locomotives Nos. 129 and 130

DM&IR dieselized its road operations in the late 1950s with a fleet of 93 EMD SD9 and SD18 road-switchers. Two of the SD9s — Nos. 129 and 130, pictured here — were equipped for passenger service. Six Alco RSD15s (1949), 10 ex-UP C630s (1973), and 20 secondhand SD40-3 rebuilds (1996–97) rounded out the road power roster.

DM&IR
Two road-switcher diesel locomotives
0-10-2 steam locomotive

0-10-2 steam locomotive No. 607

DM&IR 607 was one of nine big 0-10-2s the Missabe acquired from the Union Railroad, a sister U.S. Steel carrier, in 1949. Equipped with all-weather cabs and tender-truck boosters, the giants were built by Baldwin in 1936–37.

Photograph by Henry J. McCord
0-10-2 steam locomotive
Road-switcher diesel locomotive

SD38AC diesel locomotive No. 204

The Missabe acquired eight EMD SD38ACs (including No. 204) and five SD38-2s during 1971–76. A sixth SD38-2 arrived from the Bessemer & Lake Erie in 1980, followed by seven straight SD38s from B&LE and Elgin, Joliet & Eastern in 1992–93.

Louis A. Marre collection
Road-switcher diesel locomotive
2-10-4 steam locomotive

2-10-4 steam locomotive No. 710

Missabe 710, getting a bath at the Proctor roundhouse, was one of 18 2-10-4s transferred from the Bessemer after World War II.

Photograph by W. G. Fancher

2-10-4 steam locomotive
4-6-2 steam locomotive

4-6-2 steam locomotive No. 401

Tall-stacked Pacific 401 was one of three 4-6-2s Baldwin built for the Duluth, Missabe & Northern in 1913. DM&IR’s other 4-6-2s were a quartet from the D&IR, also 1913 Baldwins.

Photograph by Albert C. Andrews
4-6-2 steam locomotive
Switcher diesel locomotive

SW9 diesel locomotive No. 17

The Missabe’s all-EMD diesel switcher fleet consisted of a single 1949 NW2 and 15 1953 SW9s. A member of the latter group shows off its wing-trimmed lettering, a modified version of the design applied to the tenders of the road’s 2-8-8-4s.

EMD
Switcher diesel locomotive
2-8-8-2 steam locomotive

2-8-8-2 steam locomotive No. 210

DM&IR 210 was one of four 2-8-8-2 Mallets that Baldwin built in 1916 and ’17 for the DM&N. From sandbox on the pilot deck to ludicrously small trailing truck to stubby, built-up tender, it’s a marvel of mechanical detail.

Photograph by Franklin A. King
2-8-8-2 steam locomotive
2-10-2 steam locomotive

2-10-2 steam locomotive No. 506

Forty years of modifications have largely obscured the USRA ancestry of Missabe 2-10-2 No. 506, built for DM&N by Alco’s Brooks plant in 1919. The 10 USRA engines followed six Baldwin 2-10-2s of 1916.

Robert C. Anderson
2-10-2 steam locomotive

All through April 2021, Classic Trains editors are celebrating the history, heritage, and grit of the Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railroad. Please enjoy this photo gallery of DM&IR locomotives selected from the files of Kalmbach Media’s David P. Morgan Library.

Only from Classic Trains!

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