Southern Pacific 6051

Southern Pacific 6051

Infobox Locomotive
name=Southern Pacific 6051


caption=6051 enters the transfer table at the former Sacramento SP Shops
powertype=Diesel-electric
gauge=4 ft 8½ in (1435 mm)
railroad=Southern Pacific Railroad
builder=General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD)
buildmodel=E9
number=6051
builddate=1954
currentowner=California State Railroad Museum
disposition=operational
numinclass=9

Southern Pacific Railroad's (SP) number 6051 is an EMD E9 diesel locomotive. It was one of nine E9s built by EMD in 1954 in a final bid to rid steam from all passenger operations. This allowed the dieselization of the "Coast Daylight", the "San Joaquin Daylight", and miscellaneous other trains. These units operated with E7s and ALCO PAs as required. SP 6051 is the only surviving Southern Pacific passenger-dedicated diesel locomotive, and it currently resides at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento, California.

6051 was delivered in the "Daylight" paint scheme, with Farr-Aire intake grilles, nose MU connections, Nathan model M5 air horn, and a freight pilot. In 1958, SP 6051 was painted in the experimental "halloween" paint scheme, but this likely didn't last very long. SP 6051 received the gray and scarlet "bloody nose" paint scheme shortly afterward. SP 6051 was retired in 1971 at the dawn of Amtrak, and was donated to the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society. It in turn was donated to the California State Railroad Museum and placed on display near the Sacramento train station until the California State Railroad Museum was built. SP 6051 was cosmetically and mechanically restored in the early 1980s and is in its original 1954 appearance in the "Daylight" paint scheme. SP 6051 was also part of the 1981 "Railfair" festivities to celebrate the opening of the California State Railroad Museum.

Southern Pacific 6051 is occasionally used as an ambassador outside of the museum for special occasions in California. Highlights include SP 6051 leading an Operation Lifesaver excursion train in 1987, attending the Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal's 50th anniversary celebration in 1989, and in September of 2005, SP 6051 and Amtrak 281, an EMD F40PH that is also preserved at the CSRM, made a trip from Sacramento to San Francisco, where it picked up Southern Pacific 2467, a 4-6-2 steam locomotive at the Golden Gate Railroad Museum, and brought it to Sacramento for display at the CSRM. SP 6051's most recent voyage outside of the museum was in August, 2006, when it attended the unveiling of Union Pacific's Southern Pacific Heritage Unit, UP 1996.

The only other surviving "Daylight" engine is Southern Pacific 4449, one of the steam locomotives originally displaced by diesels like SP 6051.

References

* [http://espee.railfan.net]
* [http://www.csrmf.org]


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